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TNH's ultimate guide to downtown Durham


Main Street

Aroma Joe’s Coffee:

When you need your morning energy jolt but don’t feel like going to the dining halls, downtown Durham offers several choices. Aroma Joe’s Coffee is the closest to campus. Customers can order their own flavors of iced coffee or go with the establishment’s signature flavors. The “Rush” is Aroma Joe’s own energy drink brand that comes in a variety of flavors. Located at 72 Main St. connected to Subway.

Durham Bike & Sports:

Located at 72 Main St., Durham Bike & Sports has an inventory of high quality bicycles, swimwear and long boards. The shop offers additional services such as bike repair, skate sharpening and ski tuning.

Town & Campus:

This UNH staple has been serving the needs of students since 1960. The store sells everything an incoming student could want or need, except textbooks. They have the largest selection of UNH clothing and gifts marked at competitive prices. Town and Campus is locally owned and operated, and encourages students to support local businesses. Located at 56 Main St.

The Knot Irish Pub:

Although primarily known as a bar, the Knot does have a full menu open to all ages until 9:30 p.m. on most nights. It is located at 58A Main St. adjacent to Town and Campus.

Red Carpet Florist:

This locally crafted flower and gift shop has been in business since the 1960s. Located to the left of the Knot when facing Main Street, the flowers are supplied by a local grower, and may be delivered or picked up in-store by purchasers. Perfect for Valentine’s Day needs –or any holiday, really.

Breaking New Grounds:

The other super-popular coffee shop downtown, ‘BNG’ is located at 50 Main St. The shop features great tasting, freshly roasted and brewed coffee served in a relaxing and friendly atmosphere. Many students enjoy BNG as a study spot when Dimond Library is overcrowded.

Young’s Restaurant:

This family-style breakfast and lunch restaurant will be celebrating its 100th anniversary in September. The menu is popular with UNH students; and owner Kenny Young is well known in Durham for his conservation and environmental work. Young’s is located at 48 Main St.

Franz’s Food:

Franz’s Food serves breakfast and lunch dishes until 3:30 p.m. every day. Located inside the Laundromat at 46 Main St., Franz’s has large portions for reasonable prices and  a friendly staff. The “JB” –which comprises two fried eggs in a grilled white wrap with American cheese, bacon, ketchup and two hash browns– is their most popular sandwich. Also worth noting are Franz’s buttery grilled blueberry muffins. Ideal fast food to cure rough mornings.

Hayden Sports/Outback Gift Shop:

Hayden Sports is a favorite among students for its UNH-themed apparel. They almost exclusively sell UNH gear and sporting goods, as well as a wide selection of hats and team t-shirts. The store also features a custom framing shop and offers an alternative to the MUB for buying dorm posters and other decorations during move-in week. It is located at 44 Main St.

The Candy Bar:

The Candy Bar sells authentic candy from all over world, including treats from Australia, Italy and Great Britain. They offer 12 different flavors of ice cream, as well as “make-your-own” waffle cones and their signature “Extreme Pretzel.” Visitors are allowed free samples before purchasing treats, and staff members are as sweet as their employer’s product. Located at 44 Main St.

Main Street Makery:

Located at 42A Main St., the Main Street Makery has a great collection of local arts and crafts for the artistically-inclined. The shop also offers workshops taught by local artisans that are held in a special gathering space within the store.


DHOP actually stands for “Durham House Of Pizza,” but don’t refer to it as that unless you want to make your first year status clear to upperclassmen. Perhaps the most popular and legendary pizza restaurant in downtown Durham, DHOP is also notorious for being extremely busy, especially late on Thursday through Saturday nights, when the pizza house stays open until 2 a.m. Located at 42 Main St.

Main Street Barbers:

Located at 42 Main St. next to DHOP, Main Street Barbers is open Tuesday through Saturday from 12-5 p.m., and closed Sunday and Monday. Students can book appointments with either of the two barbers by either calling in or using the Booksy app.


The rumors you’ve been hearing are true: Durham does not have a Chipotle. Now before you get upset and consider transferring next semester, rest assured that TacoMano, which opened downtown in fall 2014, offers a similar menu. The restaurant opens daily at 11 a.m., and has delicious, discounted burritos as part of its late-night menu on the weekends. Located at 38 Main St.

Durham Book Exchange:

The Durham Book Exchange is an off-campus alternative to UNH’s official bookstore, located in the MUB. The Book Exchange offers the lowest prices in town for your textbooks, bested by perhaps only used book buying on the internet. Students also have the option to sell back their used and old textbooks at the semester’s end. The shop carries notebooks and office equipment, as well as apparel. Located at 36 Main St., it is independent and privately owned and has been in business since 1980.

Campus Convenience:

Better known as ‘Camp Co.,’ this convenience store is located at 32 Main St. across the road from the two busiest bars in Durham: Scorpions and Libby’s. Camp Co.’s late night food window is infamous for its fried chicken “Freddie Special,” especially favored among bar goers. If you end up going there, which you will, be sure to say hello to the store’s friendly owner, Sammy.

THe Juicery/THe Soupery:

Newly opened in Durham just before last spring semester’s end, this restaurant serves all-organic and made-to-order juices and smoothies. They feature six different homemade soup options for customers every day. Located at 30 Main St.

Scorpions Bar & Grill:

When you reach the end of the left side of Main Street, and cross the street to start back up the other way, the first business location you’ll come upon is Scorpions Bar & Grill. Located on 45 Main St., the restaurant is commonly referred to as ‘Scorps.’ While primarily a drinking destination for students over 21 on the weekends, it does offer a full menu.

Village Pizza:

Another major pizzeria in downtown Durham, Village Pizza stands apart from the others by offering meal plans. It is located on Scorps’ left at 45 Main St. The casual restaurant has daily specials, sub style sandwiches, pasta and also offers catering services.

Libby’s Bar & Grill:

Libby’s has a reputation as the most frequented of the three downtown Durham bars by upperclassmen. However, the restaurant also has a spacious dining room and extensive menu. A family friendly daytime destination or simply a good spot to meet up with friends to share a meal, Libby’s serves delicious burgers and other foods from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. on most days. Located at 47 Main St.

Pauly’s Pockets:

Pauly’s Pockets has carved out a niche downtown by serving authentic Middle-Eastern cuisine. Their specialty recipe for falafel dates back over 400 years, according to Armenian owner, Paul Eja. Pauly’s authenticity draws many international students to the restaurant, and is a nice fast food alternative to DHOP and TacoMano across the street.

Hair Excitement:

Left of Pauly’s Pockets, Hair Excitement has a friendly, skilled staff and is open from 9 a.m.-9 p.m. every day except Sunday, when they open at 10 a.m. and close at 5 p.m. The salon also has tanning beds. Located at 49 Main Street in Suite 102.

SolSistar Boutique:

Located at 49 Main Street in Suite 103, this boutique offers a stylish and diverse array of quality women’s clothing. Specializing in a selection of high-end jeans, SolSistar also carries brand names, which include Free People, Mystree, Kut from the Kloth and Miss Me among others. SolSistar is a great place to find unique fashions without having to travel into Portsmouth.

Jenkins Court


This new burger joint opened February 22, 2016. Known for serving delicious food at exceptionally low prices, Lexie’s motto is “Peace, Love, Burgers.” If you frequent Lexie’s (which you probably will), you’ll soon learn how crowded the restaurant gets on a regular basis, so there’s always take-out as a second option. Lexie’s Durham is located at 10 Jenkins Court and has another location in Portsmouth at 212 Islington St., as well as a third location in Newburyport, Massachusetts.

The Spot:

Located at 8 Jenkins Court behind Lexie’s burger joint, the Spot specializes in organic Brazilian Acai bowls and blends. The restaurant focuses on using all natural ingredients filled with protein to keep customers energetic and healthy.

Elite Vapor:

Located at 7 Jenkins Court across the street from Lexie’s, Elite Vapor is the only vaporizer shop in downtown Durham. They offer 100 flavors of juice along with their own locally made juice.

Perfect Tan:

Looking to get a tan without going on Spring Break? Perfect Tan, located at 13 Jenkins Court offers students three levels of tanning, with tanning and lotion specials every month. They also offer spray tans.

Thai Smile 2:

Located at 13 Jenkins Court, Thai Smile 2 is Durham’s only authentic Thai food restaurant. Their food is fresh and made to order, and you can choose how spicy you’d like it.

Madbury Road

Wildcat Pizza:

Located at 3 Madbury Road, this local pizzeria has a large, UNH Wildcats themed menu with numerous options other than pizza. In addition to serving up great pizza, the restaurant also offers calzones, pasta, burgers, salads, subs and wraps. They have recently included online ordering on their website, and also offer delivery. The restaurant is open every day of the week excluding Sunday.


Located at 9 Madbury Road, Fro-Zone has 12 flavors of  frozen yogurt, sorbet and custard, with over 30 toppings available. There are low-fat and dairy-free options, as well as freshly sliced fruit. The outdoor seating area is a nice place to sit in the shade while you enjoy your “froyo.”

Mill Road

The Freedom Cafe:

Located at 10 Mill Road, the Freedom Cafe is a great place for students to spend their Wednesday evenings drinking coffee and tea while contributing to a good cause. This nonprofit establishment features live open mic nights every Wednesday, among other events. All donations go towards the café’s goal to raise awareness and prevent human trafficking worldwide.

The Waysmeet Center:

Located at 15 Mill Road across from the Mill Road Visitor Lot, the Waysmeet Center welcomes all members of the Durham community. With a mission to enhance the spiritual and emotional wellbeing of its visitors, the center offers many free events throughout the year, which include drum circles, lectures, volunteer opportunities, meditation sessions and community dinners. Also, located beneath the center itself is the Cornucopia Food Pantry, open during the academic year on Tuesdays from 4-5:30 p.m. and Fridays from 12-2 p.m. Donations are accepted but not mandatory.

Mill Road Plaza

The Works Bakery and Café:

Located at 5A Mill Road next to Hannaford Supermarket, this bagel shop has fresh baked New York style bagels and bread every day. Breakfast sandwiches are made with local cage-free eggs, and sandwich meats are naturally cured, hormone- and antibiotic-free. The restaurant has gluten-free options, soups and salads, smoothies and assorted pastries and desserts. In addition to the multiple different flavors of cream cheese offered, they also carry Tofutti dairy-free cream cheeses. The Works is a New England-based chain with several locations, the closest of which is located at 9 Congress St. in downtown Portsmouth.

Bella’s Casual Dining:

Located at 5 Mill Road next to Rite Aid, Bella’s is a small, locally owned family restaurant. The menu is diverse, offering a range of American and Italian dishes, as well as fried seafood and daily lunch and dinner specials. The restaurant includes outdoor seating and full bar –a great place to bring visiting parents or go on a date.

Domino’s Pizza:

The classic delivery choice for students on a late-weekend night, Domino’s Pizza is located at 7 Mill Road. Its current location used to be Minos Roast Beef.

The Smoothie Bar:

Part of Wildcat Fitness, located at 7 Mill Road, the Smoothie Bar is intended as a refueling station for gym visitors, though it is also open to the public. Their recovery shakes will help keep your body’s metabolism in check after an intense workout session. In addition to unique recovery blends, the Smoothie Bar also has “guilt-free” dessert smoothies, low calorie options and “meal in a cup” recipes.

Mei Wei:

Located at 7 Mill Road, Mei Wei is the only Chinese/Japanese restaurant in Durham. In addition to a menu of familiar Chinese dishes, Mei Wei also has sushi, cocktails and a lunch buffet.

Pettee Brook Lane

Papa John’s Pizza:

Located at 10 Pettee Brook Lane, Papa John’s offers take out and delivery and has in-restaurant seating. The restaurant is Durham’s newest pizzeria, opened in December 2015.

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