Off the coast of North Carolina lies one of the East Coast’s most hidden treasures, the Outer Banks. Between beautiful beaches and historic culture, there is plenty to do when visiting the area. Here’s a comprehensive list of the best places to visit and where to stay during your beach vacation to the OBX!
Corolla is located in the northernmost section of the Outer Banks, about 12 miles away from Carova beach. The waves of Corolla are smaller, offering wonderful conditions to kayak and enjoy other watersports. The area is characterized by wide, beautiful beaches and new vacation rental homes, such as Sanderling Resort. Offering an outdoor pool, free wifi, a large oceanfront lawn with private beach access and beautiful sand dunes to explore, this Outer Banks Hotel is the perfect option for your coastal getaway. The beach is also pet friendly as long as your pets are leashed.
Duck was voted one of the top 10 most pet-friendly beaches in the United States by US Today and is home to many small boutique shops and restaurants. The beaches are much quieter compared to other parts of the Outer Banks because beach accesses are private but come with your oceanfront vacation home. The New Duck park spans most of the town and visitors can find a wooden boardwalk that offers spectacular views. There is also a playground for children and an amphitheater that offers live music and programs in the summer season.
Southern Shores sits between Kitty Hawk and Duck, providing convenient access to both. This quiet oceanside town offers seclusion and tranquility. There are no shops, activities or restaurants in Southern Shores, allowing you and your family to experience complete relaxation without the hustle and bustle that is so common among other coastal towns along the Atlantic Ocean.
Kill Devil Hills
Located in Dare County, NC, Kill Devil Hills is centrally located on the Outer Banks. This is the perfect area for families looking to take in as much of the local area as possible. The area is littered with miniature golf courses, go-karts, laser tag, and the Wright Brothers National Memorial. Kill Devil Hills also offers many vacation rental options. One of our favorites is Sea Ranch Resort, which offers 2 bedrooms, 2 bath oceanfront condos with beautiful ocean views. Each unit includes a private balcony and onsite amenities include a full-service restaurant and bar, beachside bistro, indoor pool, and fitness center. Another of our favorites, First Flight Retreat sits on some of the widest beachfront on the Outer Banks at Milepost 8.5 in Kill Devil Hills and offers luxury Outer Banks oceanfront condos with ocean views and premium resort amenities. One, two, and three-bedroom options are available. Finally, Days Inn by Wyndham Kill Devil Hills, located in Kill Devil Hills, between Kitty Hawk and Nags Head on Highway 12, offers a comfortable and affordable option for those looking to visit the area.
Much like Kill Devil Hills, Kitty Hawk is among the busier areas of OBX. Many shops and restaurants are scattered throughout the area. Only 10 minutes away from the Hilton Garden Inn Outer Banks. This hotel offers a free parking lot, free wifi, an outdoor and indoor pool as well as a concierge to help you explore all OBX has to offer.
Ramada Plaza by Wyndham is the perfect place to relax and unwind while on your coastal vacation. This property is oceanfront and is centrally located. Enjoy the sunrise of Nags Head on your private balcony before heading out to relax by the oceanfront outdoor pool. Close to shopping, historical sites, and outdoor parks such as Jockey’s Ridge State Park where you and your family can enjoy hiking, biking, and other outdoor activities, Nags Heads leaves little to be desired. If you are seeking an adventure-packed vacation, Nags Head is the place for you.
Manteo & Roanoke Island
Home to the Elizabethan Gardens and Lost Colony, Roanoke Island and Manteo are a beautiful day trip to take during your stay in the Outer Banks. Visit the North Carolina aquarium, located on the North end of the Island, to learn about local marine life. Venture to the South end of Roanoke and Wanchese to visit the Seafood industrial park where most of the local seafood served on the Outer Banks is brought in and packaged for delivery.
Hatteras Island & Ocracoke Island
Home to Buxton, Frisco, and Salvo, Hatteras Island is one of the larger barrier islands off the coast of North Carolina. One of our favorite resorts, Rodanthe Sunset Resort is located here and offers the finest sound front luxury condos on the Outer Banks. Amenities include a sound front pool, gazebo, and dock. Check-in for your partial or weekly stay and set out to find the famous Wild Horses of Rodanthe. Hatteras and Ocracoke Island are home to Cape Hatteras national seashore, Cape Hatteras Lighthouse and Avon Fishing Pier where you and your family can adventure in the sun all day!
Whether you stay in Duck, Kill Devil Hills, Kitty Hawk or any others, you are destined to have a great time. Take in all the Outer Banks have to offer by soaking up the rich history of the area, or seeing the beautiful wildlife. We hope you have a great time while you’re here, and happy traveling.