Visitor hours & parking

Hours: The Gardens outdoors are open every day of the year from 8 a.m. to dusk. The visitor center restrooms and information desk are open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., except on holidays. The Terrace Shop is closed until March 1. The Terrace Café will reopen in early spring.

Admission: It's free to explore Duke Gardens. But Duke University charges a fee for parking.


Spring parking alert: Duke Gardens' parking is limited and often fills to capacity by 10 a.m. daily, particularly in springtime. In 2023, spring blooms are already beginning, and they are attracting large crowds. Please plan ahead for potential parking delays, be aware of the overflow parking lots noted below, and consider using public transportation or rideshare options such as Uber or Lyft.

Parking fees & machines: Duke University Parking & Transportation charges $2 per hour for parking at Duke Gardens, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week.

To pay for parking, you will need your vehicle's license plate number. We suggest that you take a photo of it for easy reference.

How to pay to park in Duke Gardens' parking lots:

Pay via the PayByPhone mobile app, website or phone number. We recommend downloading the app and setting up an account while you're at home, so you'll have the strongest WiFi or cell reception possible for a quick download. Reception can be spotty at the Gardens. Once you have the app on your mobile device, you'll be able to pay for your parking on site with ease. 
When you arrive at the Gardens and are ready to pay for parking using PayByPhone, our location number is 3109.
What you need to sign up for a PayByPhone account: Your license plate number, an active email address, and a credit card.

Pay at the university parking machine located in the lower parking lot at Duke Gardens. Your license plate number will be required. The machine only accepts cash, but it does not provide change. You will have an option to print a receipt, but you do not need to place the receipt on your dashboard. If a machine is malfunctioning, please inform a volunteer or staff member or contact Duke University Parking & Transportation online or by phone at 919-684-7275.

Overflow parking options

Daily overflow parking is available 7 days a week on Lewis Street, which is a left turn off Anderson Street just north of our main entrance. The PayByPhone zone for these on-street spaces is 11119, and PayByPhone is the only way to pay for this overflow option.

Weekend overflow parking is also available in the Campus Drive lot, on the corner of Anderson Street and Campus Drive. The PayByPhone zone for the Campus Drive lot is 3121, and PayByPhone is the only way to pay for this overflow option.


How to get here: See our "getting here" page for directions by car or public transportation.

The Doris Duke Center is closed on the following holidays:

Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Memorial Day
Independence Day 
Labor Day
Christmas Eve & Day
New Year’s Eve & Day

Restrooms: The Doris Duke Center restrooms are open during limited hours, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. daily, except some holidays. There are also restrooms in the Terrace Gardens and the Asiatic Arboretum that are open from 8 a.m. to dusk and remain open on holidays.

If you have a question in advance of your visit, please call the information line at 919-684-3698.

banner says save time, download paybyphone app, location 3109