Things to do in the Outer Beach
Planning a visit to the Outer Banks of North Carolina? Our vacation guide was created to help you plan your dream vacation. Whether you’re here for a single night or all summer, and want to adventure on land, sea or air there are plenty of things to do on the beautiful Outer Banks. Our Local Take On The Best Places To Visit In The Outer Banks.
Visit One Of Our 5 Lighthouses
From the Bodie Island lighthouse in Nags head to the Currituck Beach Lighthouse in Corolla, the OBX has no shortage of lighthouses rich with history and panoramic views of the barrier island from the top. Make a day trip to visit each of the five by starting in Corolla and venturing down South, all the way to Ocracoke.
The current Bodie Island Lighthouse is the third that has stood in this vicinity of Bodie Island on the Outer Banks in North Carolina and was built in 1872. It stands 156 feet tall and is located on the Roanoke Sound side of a portion of a peninsula that is the first part of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.
The Currituck Beach Lighthouse, located in the heart of Corolla, borders the historic Whalehead in Historic Corolla and still functions as a guide for passing mariners. At 162' feet tall, the lighthouse's First Order Fresnel light, (the largest size available for American lighthouses), can be seen for 18 nautical miles as the light rotates in 20 second increments.
Brush Up On Your Wright Brothers History
The Wright Brothers Memorial and Museum are both located in Kill Devil Hills. Once you finish an unforgettable tour of these monuments, head over to Kitty Hawk to see the marker where Orville and Wilbur once lived. Still not satisfied? Take an aero tour and experience what it’s like to fly in a biplane or helicopter for yourself!
Wright Brothers National Memorial, located in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, commemorates the first successful, sustained, powered flights in a heavier-than-air machine.
Try Our Local Seafood
Fresh oysters, mouth-watering shrimp, the most flavorful tuna you’ll ever eat – these are just a few of the delicious fresh catches you can find on local menus. We’d be lying if we said eating some of this amazing fare wasn’t one of our favorite things to do in the Outer Banks.
There’s no shortage of world-class seafood on the east coast. From Maine lobster rolls to Cape Cod oysters to Maryland crab, the list goes on. But North Carolina holds its own. With its rich colonial history and warm southern hospitality, the razor-thin barrier islands offer a myriad of unique locally-sourced dishes. You’ll find the highest quality sustainable seafood here, making OBX a special place for your next seafood excursion.
Water Sport Activities
From surfing to parasailing, and kayaking to paddleboarding, there are watersport options available for people of all ages and experiences. Local water sport instructors love what they do and where they live and are excited to introduce you to the thrill of the outdoors in the OBX.
Outer Banks Jetovator is exited to offer the first Jetovator and Hoverboard experience in the Outer Banks. The Jetovator is the latest addition to the "jet pack flyboard" craze! The Jetovator is a water propelled flying jet bike powered by jet-ski propulsion. It allows the rider to fly up to 20 feet above the water!
Hit The Shops!
As with any vacation, shopping is a must! The Outer Banks has a multitude of options from quaint souvenir boutiques to surf shops to help you find the perfect items to remember your trip and share it with those you love. The shops in Duck are one of our personal favorite places to visit as they’re neatly lined along the waterfront, making them the perfect spot for a quick photo op too!
The Outer Banks of North Carolina is full of locally owned shops, boutiques and specialty outlets. You will discover homey charm in any privately owned shop you visit. Treat yourself to a nice vacation shopping spree and find memorabilia that will preserve your vacation for a lifetime.
Stop By Jockey’s Ridge State park
Located in Nags Head, Jockey’s Ridge is one of the most popular state parks in North Carolina and features over 400 acres of majestic sand dunes! If you’ve never been hang gliding, we can’t recommend a better place to do it. For more risk-averse folks, the hiking in Jockey’s Ridge is unparalleled, too.
Jockey's Ridge State Park is a North Carolina state park in Dare County, North Carolina in the United States. Located in Nags Head, North Carolina, it covers a 427-acre area, and includes the tallest active sand dune system in the eastern United States. It is the most visited park within the NC park system.
Explore OBX 4x4 Beaches
Just south of the Virginia border, this eleven-mile stretch of beach is collectively known as, “The 4×4 Beaches.” Unlike EVERY other Outer Banks town…there are no paved roads, no shops, and no restaurants. A four-wheel-drive vehicle or all-wheel-drive vehicle with at least 7.5 inches of ground clearance is needed to access vacation homes here, as visitors actually have to drive on the sand to get to their rentals, an exciting and unusual endeavour for many who choose one of the spectacular vacation rentals on the 4×4 Beaches for the first time.
This uncomplicated area is made up of dense maritime forests, marshy sounside coves and protected nature preserves. Home to the wild horses of Currituck County, The 4×4 Beaches make the extraordinary possibility of catching a glimpse of these unique creatures practically commonplace.
One of the last and least developed areas of the Outer Banks, vacation rental homes on The 4×4 Beaches range greatly in size, available amenities and cost. This one-of-a-kind coastal area is the perfect vacation spot for families looking to spend more time together, artists seeking inspiration and solitude, and for those seeking a more adventurous beach vacation. Twiddy invites you to experience the hidden treasure of the Outer Banks…the untouched, wide-open rarity that is The 4×4 Beaches.
Explore Nags Head
Established in the 1830’s, Nags Head epitomizes the essence of the Outer Banks with its 12 miles of oceanfront coastline stretching from Milepost 10 to 22. With more than 40 public beach accesses to the ocean, and six to the sound, Nags Head is teeming with opportunities to get out on the water for a day of fishing, watersports or just good old-fashioned rest and relaxation. The northern end of Nags Head from Milepost 10 to 16 is also where many of the favorite restaurants and shopping on the Outer Banks can be found, such as Blue Moon Beach Grill (Milepost 13) and the Outlets Nags Head (Milepost 16).
Nags Head is just an hour’s drive to Cape Hatteras and a little more than two hours to Ocracoke Island, providing visitors the opportunity for a day-trip to explore these wildly beautiful southern areas of the Outer Banks. In 2011, Nags Head performed beach nourishment to help bring sand back on to the shore. Stay up to date on the latest news and schedules for beach nourishment in Nags Head.
Why Vacation in Nags Head?
Experience the unparalleled 360-degree view of Nags Head from sound to sea as you fly a kite atop Jockey’s Ridge, the tallest natural sand dune system on the east coast. (Milepost 12)
Discover one of the 5 landmark lighthouses of the Outer Banks at the Bodie Island Lighthouse.
Eat like a local at one of the many family-operated restaurants in town. Cast a pole from one of the three major fishing piers found in Nags Head: Nags Head Fishing Pier (Milepost 11.5), Jennette’s Pier (Milepost 16), and Outer Banks Fishing Pier (Milepost 18.5).