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North Carolina Beaches

With more than 300 miles of Atlantic Ocean coastline, there’s a beach in North Carolina with your name on it. Choose from rowdy urban stretches of sand or hidden wilderness surf where you won’t see another soul. One of the state’s most iconic beaches is found at Cape Hatteras National Seashore. This park protects more than 70 miles of sand from Ocracoke Island to Bodie Island. There’s a visitor center near the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse and you can also stop in at the Museum of the Sea if you need a break from the sun.

Wrightsville Beach is accessible from the mainland and in addition to blue ocean and moderate surf you’ll find a wide range of activities and tons of amenities – rent a paddleboard for a sunrise session or dine on fresh-caught seafood at the end of the day. Topsail Beach has been a family friendly destination for ages – it’s laid back and just the spot if you want to relax. Similar to Topsail is Kure Beach, which features the oldest fishing pier on the Atlantic Coast and the North Carolina Aquarium.

Accessible primarily by boat, Carova Beach has surf and wild horses which roam freely through the dunes.

Carolina Beach State Park

Set on Cape Fear River, Carolina Beach State Park covers 761 acres on Pleasure Island – found on the North Carolina coast. Founded in 1969, the park is located near Wilmington in New Hanover County.Carolina Beach State Park yields six miles of hiking trails, picnic spots, and fishing at the marina. Other activities include wildlife and nature viewing, natural history exhibits in the visitor center at this North Carolina state park.

Kure Beach

Set in New Hanover County, Kure Beach is a coastal community set on the Atlantic Ocean near Wilmington. A scenic spot on the North Carolina coast, Kure Beach is located on Pleasure Island north of Fort Fisher. Kure Beach features eight public beaches, a multiple of seafood eateries, and the historic Kure Beach Fishing Pier. Check out beachside boutiques like the Blue Marlin Beach Shop, the Ft. Fisher Trading Post, and the Sand Box Gift Shop.

Wrightsville Beach

Home to 2,600 people, Wrightsville Beach is a beach-community located on the North Carolina coast just east of Wilmington. Wrightsville is known for Harbor Island and a four-mile island in the Atlantic Ocean. Visitors to Wrightsville Beach may enjoy fishing on Johnny Mercer's Pier, try surfing with WB Surf Camp or the Tony Silvagni Surf School, or walk the 2.5-mile Wrightsville Beach Loop. Browse through surf shops, enjoy fresh seafood, and check out holiday events and surf competitions on the beach.

Hammocks Beach State Park

Plan your next visit to the NC coast and check out Hammocks Beach State Park. Located near Swansboro, Hammocks Beach is on Bear Island along the Atlantic Ocean. The island is accessible by private boats and passenger ferries only. Visitors to the island love strolling along the unspoiled beaches, fishing, swimming and relaxing. Have fun exploring this coastal island paradise. Poke around the tidal pools and mudflats to watch the little marine life animals scurry around. Climb up a soft sand dune and enjoy the coastal breeze. Kids and adults alike, enjoy playing in the sand and taking a break from the main land.

Cape Hatteras National Seashore

A prime destination of the Outer Banks, the Cape Hatteras National Seashore is chock-full of outside activities. Enjoy your time at the North Carolina coast and explore miles of sandy beaches, nature viewing, fishing, and nature trails. The seashore is a short drive south of Kill Devil Hills.

Don't forget to take in the breath-taking views at the top of Bodie Island Lighthouse and Cape Hatteras Lighthouse or take to the water at one of the many boat launching sites on NC-12. Discover a serene experience with a canoe or kayak trip on the peaceful Pimlico Sound or go swimming and surfing with the waves of the Atlantic Ocean.