The Outer Banks of North Carolina is a long strip of barrier islands located off the northeast coast of North Carolina. The Outer Banks is known for its unspoiled, world class beaches that span the ocean villages of (from north to south) Corolla, Duck, Southern Shores, Kitty Hawk, Kill Devil Hills and Nags Head.
Outer Banks Attractions
The Outer Banks is best known for its miles of uncrowded beaches with windswept sand dunes. In addition to the rich natural beauty, the Outer Banks is also rich in history and culture. The Outer Banks is home to the first colony established in the New World on Roanoke Island, and the Wright Brothers put Kitty Hawk on the map with their first flight. Pirates like Blackbeard once frequented these islands as well.
The Outer Banks offers a wide variety of restaurants, shops, and activities to enjoy. Watersport enthusiasts enjoy some of the best surfing, windsurfing, kiteboarding, and kayaking that you can imagine. The Outer Banks close proximity to the Gulf Stream blesses our coast with warm waters most of the year, and fisherman enjoy the world-class fishing.
Landlovers can enjoy exploring the sand dunes, hiking in the maritime forest, and biking on miles of bike paths. History and culture lovers will want to explore the many lighthouses, find the wild horses in Corolla, discover the Lost Colony on Roanoke Island, or relive the first flight at the Wright Brother’s Memorial. There are so many adventures waiting for you on the Outer Banks.
Outer Banks Towns:
The Outer Banks consists of several towns and vacation communities.
Currituck County’s northern beaches around have been described by USA Weekend as ”one of the 10 best undiscovered beaches on the East Coast.” The northernmost accessible town on the Outer Banks of North Carolina has seen rapid development over the past ten years. Up until 1984, when the state extended Highway 12 north from the Dare County line, the town was a sleepy seaside village. Today, multimillion dollar Corolla Vacation Home Rentals dwarf the village proper and make Corolla one of the most desirable upscale vacation destinations in the country. Ironically, it was the opening of the road and the ensuing traffic that eventually led to the relocation of one of Corolla’s most famous attractions, the wild ponies…
Duck, North Carolina has been named by the Travel Channel as one of the best family beach destinations in the United States. Duck has beautiful, clean beaches and wonderful beach vacation rentals from ocean to sound. The village of Duck is a quaint waterfront town with boutique shops, world-class restaurants, entertainment, and a thriving sounside park. The Duck Town Park is the premier community recreation area with an 11-acre soundside maritime forest and features weekly music concerts, theatre, exercise and children’s events. Vacationer’s in Duck also love the walking and biking trails that connect all the Duck Rental Home Communities and the Village of Duck.
Your journey along Route 12 to the northern beaches begins in Southern Shores located between Kitty Hawk and Duck. Southern Shores is a beautiful town comprised mostly of single family homes. New homes incorporating the latest design features are situated alongside traditional coastal architecture. All streets have private beach access with some homes offering sound access, marina privileges and use of tennis courts.
Once a remote area, Kitty Hawk has grown into a summer resort area and provides some of the best beach recreation on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. When Orville Wright stepped ashore in Kitty Hawk Village in the fall of 1900, he probably knew that he and his brother were destined to make history as the pioneers of flight. Today, the once-tiny sound side village is one of the largest townships on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. On the ocean-side, thousands of rental homes, restaurants and shops are part of the development that has characterized the northern Outer Banks from Nags Head to Corolla.
Kill Devil Hills is located in the center of the Outer Banks with beautiful stretches of white sandy beaches. Many beach accesses have plenty of parking, shower and restrooms. Lifeguards are on duty in the summer months as well as ATV and 4-Wheel drive Ocean Rescue Division. Enjoy surfing, skim boarding, boogie boarding, paddle ball or just relax and read a book. The town also has many choices for restaurants, hotels and shopping.
Nags Head is the oldest of the Outer Banks resorts and to many it is synonymous with the Outer Banks. Since the middle of the 19th century families have been spending their summers in the seaside cottages and Nags Head Rentals that dot the oceanfront. Nags Head has still maintained much of its original architecture and charm that has appealed to vacationers for many years.