Charm of North Carolina's Outer Banks

What makes the Outer Banks so special?

"No boardwalks, no loud theme parks, and no high rise hotels blocking the views of the ocean. No flashy nightlife, no neon lights, or main street tourist traps. Often times, I can set my chair anywhere on the beach and not have another person within 100 feet of me."

The natural beauty of the fragile islands and the pristine beaches is what makes the Outer Banks so unique. These beaches are well known to be family-friendly, making it a perfect destination for a family vacation, and an ideal place to unwind and relax. With miles of sandy beaches and loads of off-shore fun, the Outer Banks offers a wide variety of outdoor activities that are well suited for everyone.

North Carolina’s Outer Banks is one of America’s most spectacular and unique vacation destinations. The beaches of the Outer Banks stretch over 100 miles long and are surrounded by 900 miles of water and is preserved by National Park Service, which protects more than 70 miles of the coastal region. The barrier island’s mix of rolling sand dunes, beach grasses, and beautiful beaches has been charming visitors and residents for generations.

What make Outer Banks So Special

The Outer Banks is made up of historic islands, quaint towns, and secluded villages. An Outer Banks vacation provides a lifetime of memories If you have visited the Outer Banks during the summer, you're well aware it's popular beach vacation destination, and has been for decades. 

"We have been vacationing at the OBX going on 12 years and we refuse to go anywhere else. There is a little something for everyone without the "sensory overload" from typical resort beach towns with boardwalks and side-by-side hotels."

Adventures on the Water

Pick a watersport, any watersport and you can find it here. The Outer Banks is an outstanding location for OBX water sport activities! The Outer Banks offers many water activities including jet ski rentalskayaking, diving adventures, surfing, parasailing, fishing charters, dolphin cruises and more.  With constant winds, the Outer Banks is renowned as one of the best kiteboarding and windsurfing places in the world..

Outer Banks MapNorthern Outer Banks: Corolla & Duck

Located at the northern tip of the Outer Banks, Corolla is an ideal destination for a family beach vacation. Corolla is known for its relaxed pace and vast, stretches of natural beach. Corolla is the perfect place to unplug, relax and dig your feet in the sand. Corolla has plenty of things to do for families and kids, including great golf courses, bike rentals, water sports, eco-tours, great restaurants and shopping. Corolla (pronounced: "Kuh-RAH-Luh"), wide selection of great vacation rentals.

Duck is an Outer Banks community located between Corolla and Southern Shores and is regularly voted one of the best beaches in America for families. Almost exclusively a residential beach town, Duck caters to family vacations. The town has a quaint village-like charm, and the ocean and sound views and are spectacular. Duck offers family-friendly beaches, and wide selection of great vacation rentals with plenty of things to do for families and kids. The beach is the main attraction, ideal for boogie boarding, surfing and swimming. The sound offers up a perfect playground for nature lovers and sports enthusiasts who seek calmer waters.

"One Word...Breathtaking! My husband and I finally found a beach that we completely and absolutely loved. It wasn't crowded and the water and sand was beautiful."

Nags Head, NC is an Outer Banks town located between Kill Devil Hills and Hatteras Island. Nags Head offers family friendly beaches, a wide selection of great vacation rentals and has plenty of things to do for families and kids.

Hatteras Island

Hatteras Island draws visitors from all over the world who have read and heard of its rich history and pristine beaches. Best known for the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse and the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, the island has beautiful sandy beaches that are ideal for sunbathing, fishing, watersports, shell hunting, and driftwood collecting. Hatteras Island’s simplicity and unusual geographic location provides relaxation plus countless opportunities for sightseeing. The island is part of North Carolina's Outer Banks and includes the towns of Rodanthe, Waves, Salvo, Avon, Buxton, Frisco, and Hatteras. Hatteras Island is connected by bridge to the northern Outer Banks. Hatteras Island is a unique barrier island located nearly 30 miles from the North Carolina mainland. About 70 percent of the island is protected from development. There are a wide variety of recreational activities to enjoy on Hatteras Island.

Roanoke Island

Roanoke Island is an island on the Outer Banks of North Carolina and is about eight miles long and two miles wide. Roanoke Island lies between the mainland and the barrier islands near Nags Head and Kill Devil Hills. The town of Manteo is located on the northern portion of the island. Roanoke Island combines recreational and water activities with historical sites and an outdoor theater to form one of the major tourist attractions of the Outer Banks.

Ocracoke Island

Ocracoke Island is part of the Outer Banks of North Carolina. With over 15 miles of natural, unspoiled beaches guest can enjoy popular activities such as swimming, boating, surfing, kayaking, hiking, history tours, biking, fishing, fine dining, horseback riding, dolphin tours, parasailing, crabbing, shelling, or simply relaxing.

The Outer Banks offers ideal vacation temperatures in the summer season. Outer Banks weather is a combination of bright sunny days tempered by gentle ocean breezes. The area enjoys around 200 sunny days each year, with a year-round average hovering around 70°. Wind is an everyday occurrence on the Outer Banks, and can range from gentle southwest breezes to strong northeast storm winds.

Famous Facts
  • Jockey's Ridge is home to the largest sand dunes on the East Coast.
  • Wild Ponies still run wild along the coast of North Carolina. 
  • The current Cape Hatteras lighthouse is America's tallest lighthouse at 198 feet high. It is also the worlds tallest brick lighthouse.
  • A 400 year old mystery haunts Roanoke Island. Here, 117 men, women, and children lived for a short time - then vanished without a trace, leaving historians with a mystery that has never been solved.  
Well Done! You're ready for the best Outer Banks vacation ever!
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