Chapel Hill, North Carolina is a college town. Home of the United States' first state university, Chapel Hill has the eclectic feel of a major university, complete with a variety of restaurants and local shops, lots of sidewalks for students and a large string of teaching hospitals and facilities!

The town spans 21.1 square miles and has a population of 51,519. Despite its modest size, Chapel Hill has a friendly Southern feel paired with big city aspirations.   

Seated within Southeastern Orange County, Chapel Hill has an ample selection of cultural and artistic activities for its residents and visitors. Morehead Planetarium (which shows approximately 8,900 stars), Ackland Art Museum, the 600 acre North Carolina Botanical Gardens and many more attractions are a point of pride for this little city. In fact, the town council of Chapel Hill allocated one percent of selected capital projects to help maintain and create permanent works of public art.

The Tar Heel city attracts more than just students and art appreciators. Medical professionals, professors, teachers and insurance professionals all flock to the area due to the town's four major employers: Orange County schools, Blue Cross/Blue Shield of North Carolina, UNC-Chapel Hill and the hospitals of UNC. Still, it's a young town, with a median age of 30.4 years. And the restaurants and shops reflect an equally balanced blend of local and "chain" flavors. It's quaint, but a little cosmopolitan, too!

Chapel Hill was named after the Church of New Hope Chapel, which used to sit at the crossroads of a hill, and, despite its size, is one of the most recognized cities in North Carolina to nonresidents and residents alike. UNC-Chapel Hill is home of the Tar Heels, an Atlantic Coast Conference athletic department that boasts NCAA Division I National Champions in several sports, including the women's soccer and men's basketball programs - annual visitors to the NCAA playoffs. This athletic success has brought the city and the university even more national recognition.

With the generous blend of small college town and growing city, it's no wonder it was nicknamed "The Southern Part of Heaven."

Check out these great Chapel Hill locations!

City Overview

Population growth since 2000:
Median home cost:
Cost of living:  lower than U.S. average
Public Schools spending per student:
Unemployment rate:

Chapel Hill weather facts


  • The average warmest month is July
  • The highest recorded temperature was 106 degrees in 1988
  • On average, the coolest month is January
  • The lowest recorded temperature was -8 degrees in 1985
  • The maximum average precipitation occurs in March


Tax Rates

Town - $.5810
Wake County - $.7081
Total - $1.2466

Wake County - 2% 
State - 4%
NC Prepared Food - 1% 

Median Age Median Household Income Population
24 $47,424 48,715

* Based on 2000 US Census.


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