There is something really special about the Outer Banks for me. We are fortunate in NC to have some amazing and beautiful beaches but for me, the Outer Banks takes the cake. For the most part, its quiet, feels secluded and non-commercial. I love that aspect of it so much. There is so much to do there - outside of your typical putt-putts and water parks so I wanted to share my favorite 5 things to do in the Outer Banks.
1. Jockey's Ridge Park - There is no other place like this. Jockey's Ridge is the tallest natural sand dune system in the Eastern United States. Our group has made it a tradition to go and watch the sunset here at least once on our trip. Because of the Dunes you are able to watch the sunset over the water (a rare occurrence on the East coast) and it is so beautiful. Its a great place to explore, fly a kite, have a picnic and just relax and enjoy the scenery. Also, you never know who you will run into - we came across several storm troopers and other star wars characters. We pretty much went crazy when we saw them.
2. Exploring Nature/Wild Horses - The northern Outer Banks happens to be the living quarters of Wild Horses - not to mention so many other great animals. There are many ways to see the horses, you can drive yourself on the beach (if you have 4 wheel drive), rent a 4 wheel drive vehicle or take a guided tour. However last year we decided to walk. Although we never saw any horses we did enjoy it. The northern tip of the outer banks is completly secluded - its all natural and its awesome. You can walk along the shores hunting for horses and gathering some of the largest shells I have ever seen. While staying in the Outer Banks we also saw deer, a fox, an osprey and its nest and so many other little creatures. Our nature/animal loving son looooves it.
3. Visit the Lighthouses - The Outer Banks has many lighthouses to visit and a couple that you can actually go inside and walk up to the top! Last year we visited the Currituck Beach Light House in Corolla and ventured up to the top. Its quite a little walk up , but really cool when you get there. This area also has a little museum with some aquatic animals and some little shops and eateries in the Corolla Village.
4. Kayaking - We had the best time kayaking this year. Probably because we turned it into a tournament (with a bracket system and everything) but it was also something really fun for Justin, Silas and I to do as well. The house we rented was right on the sound and had kayaks already there and available for us but there are a ton of places to rent them as well. The sound here in the Outer Banks is such a great place to go kayaking and I always feel like I'm getting a good workout while also relaxing somehow at the same time.
5. Eat something really tasty - Hello Duck Donuts. We actually stayed in Duck this year so we were really close to the original Duck Donuts so naturally we had to get a dozen or five! They are just so good. But I love how the Outer Banks is largely made up of local business. The best seafood I have ever had was in the Outer Banks. But it also has many other types of restaurants to choose from. If you have a larger group like we had I would reccomend Mulligan's in Nags Head (its also almost right across from Jockey's Ridge). It has plenty of room for larger groups, a nice environment and plenty of seafood/non-seafood options and different price ranges. Plus- the food was good! So enjoy the local fair and try something new!
So have any of you visited the Outer Banks? I would love to know some of your favorite things to do! Share in the comments!