A small suburb of Raleigh and a town in Wake County, North Carolina, Apex has experienced drastic population growth over the years, making it one of the fastest-growing suburbs in the country. With approximately 45,000 residents, Apex claimed the top spot on Money Magazine's best places to live in the United States while still maintaining its small-town charm.
From "peak" to "peak," Apex is well-named. It was originally called "Apex" since it was the highest peak on the Chatham Railroad Line between Jacksonville, Florida, and Richmond, Virginia. Today, it continues as a thriving, growing town that has earned its nickname "the Peak of Good Living."
As a center of trade, business, and shopping, there are numerous reasons why Apex has been named the number one town to live in North Carolina and why it's still projected that more people will move to Apex over the next few years.
The temperatures in Apex rarely go below 20 or above 95 degrees. The hottest month is July, with an average high temperature of 88 degrees, while the coldest month is January, with an average low temperature of 33 degrees.
If you’re moving to Apex from a colder place, you may want to consider discarding your snow shovel since there’s only an average of four inches of snow per year—usually in February—if it falls at all.
Affordable cost of living
With a cost of living index 13% higher than the national average, the cost of living in Apex may seem expensive, but its utility prices are 3% below the national average, its transportation expenses are 4% lower, and its grocery prices are 13% lower than the national average. Moreover, most neighborhoods within Apex have an attractive median sale price for homes on sale, making it a desirable option for homebuyers in the Triangle Area.
Since Apex is considered a relatively affordable place to live, the median household income for single adults is $57,625, which means that anyone earning the average national median salary of $63,214 can live comfortably in Apex.
The heart of this small Raleigh suburb is Downtown Apex, which has a historic main street known as Salem Street. With the first settlers arriving in the 1860s, Apex was officially incorporated in 1873 with its center around the railroad, which ended up being an essential part of Apex's history.
Officially named a historic district in 1994, Downtown Apex is one of the area's most intact, nostalgic railroad towns. It packs a tremendous punch of personality and a variety of local businesses and popular eateries ranging from an antique emporium to a coffee shop, a wine bar, a beer dispensary, and a tiny, birdhouse-like book library.
Surrounded by Queen Anne homes, late Victorian buildings, and Craftsman bungalows, Apex exudes charm and rich history. This historic district is the primary location for the town's festivals and special events, including the weekly farmers' market. It's also a central gathering place where families dine out on the weekends and kids stroll in groups after school.
Situated in the heart of the Piedmont region, Apex is close to major campuses, making it easy for faculty and students to get to work or school. It's also just a few hours' drive from Asheville, the North Carolina Mountains, Wilmington, as well as beaches along the Atlantic coast.
No matter your reason for moving to Apex, it’s a central location, and major interstate highways make it easy to travel around and outside the Triangle Area.
One of the best parts about living in this small town is the perfect access to top campuses, all located in or around Apex and within a few minutes' drive.
Apex is home to some of the best universities in the country, including North Carolina State University, Duke University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Meredith College. Most residents are students or college alumni working at one of the top companies nearby.
Apex is also part of Wake County Public Schools, one of the state's most highly-rated public school systems.
If you’re moving to Apex with school-aged children, it may be best to learn more about the area and determine which neighborhoods are perfect before buying a home in Apex.
Apex has plenty of parks throughout the city for outdoor recreation. From skate parks to dog parks and soccer parks, there's no better way to explore the area than by spending time at one of its many beautiful parks with family and friends.
There are parks with battling cages, disc golf, and agility courses as well as parks with impressive outdoor amphitheaters for summer festivals and concerts.
Favorite Apex parks
Crowder County Park: This 33-acre park features forestland and landscaped grounds as well as multiple playgrounds, an outdoor amphitheater, shelters, an observation deck, a pond, and a boardwalk. It's a favorite location for kids to have fun on the boardwalk walking over the lake while feeding turtles. The observation deck has rocking chairs, making it a quiet place to watch birds and wildlife.
Apex Community Park: Enjoy this 160-acre park with multiple courts and sports fields, playgrounds, a fitness court, restrooms, and fitness trails. It offers excellent fishing spots, canoes, kayaks, and other non-motor boats.
Apex Jaycee Park: Join some of your favorite sports, including soccer and softball, at this 23-acre park. There's a batting cage, a picnic shelter, and multiple athletic fields.
Hunter Street Park: A small park just across Town Hall with soccer and baseball fields, playgrounds, and a paved walking trail.
Hosting various festivals and events throughout the year, Apex’s calendar stays occupied much of the year. There's always something fun going on during the weekends to ensure the whole community stays close.
With festivals involving food, entertainment, drinks, and local vendors, walking along the streets of Apex and joining the local celebrations is a terrific way to meet new people and gain an appreciation for the area.
Some of the beloved festivals you'll experience in Apex include:
- Apex Music Festival
- Fourth of July Celebration
- Pig Fest
- Founders Day
- Christmas on Salem Street
- Easter Egg Hunt
- Family Basketball Ham Toss
- Apex Latino Arts Festival
Home to trendy taprooms, cozy cafés, the occasional pub and grill, and laidback taverns, Apex is full of delicious restaurants and eateries that’ll satisfy all of your culinary cravings. Some of the best restaurants include Vegan Community Kitchen, Abbey Road Tavern and Grill, Dallas Famous Chicken Restaurant, Scratch Kitchen & Taproom, Doherty's Irish Pub & Restaurant, and JD's Tavern.
From international cuisine to classic Southern cooking, there’s always a great restaurant to dine at that’ll ensure you return for more.
For a small suburban town, Apex has some fantastic cultural arts resources. There are various ways to enjoy arts in Apex, from classes and family dance events to jazz and classical concerts.
Some of the popular cultural arts resources in Apex include:
The Halle Cultural Arts Center: Enjoy music concerts, family dances, Arts & Craft Saturdays, and visual art exhibits. You can also take a drama or voice class or enjoy a pizza and a movie.
Koka Booth Amphitheater: Located in South Cary a few minutes from Downtown Apex, this is a beautiful and scenic place to visit. From classic rock to modern music, bluegrass, and more, this is a fabulous theater. In addition to great music concerts, the annual Chinese Lantern Festival is thrilling. The surrounding Symphony Lake creates a beautiful backdrop for concerts and the 4th of July Fireworks and Carnival.
Apex Arts Council: Supports local art by providing resources and funding to bring traveling events and shows to the area, hosts local arts and craft shows, and supports community theater and writers’ guilds.
Experience Apex, NC with the Triangle Experts
Apex is an excellent option to consider if you’re looking for beautiful weather, affordability, plenty of educational and job opportunities, festivals, and top amenities.
As Raleigh realtors, we’ve developed a significant understanding of the best neighborhoods in the area, so if you’re moving to Apex, we can help you find the perfect homes for sale or the best neighborhood in Apex that’ll appeal to your lifestyle. Our incredible team of experienced and knowledgeable Raleigh real estate agents is here to help you and answer any questions you may have about Apex or the homebuying process. Contact us today for more information about Apex homes for sale.
You can also refer to our unique resources, including our collection of area guides containing convenient and valuable information about moving in and around Apex, such as moving to Durham, Chapel Hill, and Raleigh.