1. Climb Currituck Beach Lighthouse

Corolla Map It

The distinctive red brick Currituck Beach Lighthouse towers over the Corolla landscape and is a must-see for any visitor with a distinct love of history, Outer Banks icons, and all-around unparalleled views. The lighthouse grounds, which are well-landscaped with native foliage and feature an on-site gift shop in the former keeper's quarters, are open for explorers year round, while the lighthouse can be climbed seasonally for adventurous vacationers without a fear of heights. It's a steady and intimidating 220 step climb to the top of the historic 1876 structure, but reaching the small circular deck and First Order Fresnel light comes with a heck of a reward - namely, the view. Spanning all the way from the Virginia state line to the central Outer Banks, shutterbugs will want to take plenty of pictures of the sky-high vistas that can only be found at the top of the Currituck Beach Lighthouse, a full 162' feet above sea level.

2. See Corolla's Wild Horses

Carova Map It

The most famous local residents in the Northern Outer Banks are notoriously shy and may be hard to spot, but are nevertheless an incredible and unforgettable sight for visitors who are lucky enough to cross their paths. The Wild Colonial Spanish Mustangs(Corolla's Wild Horses) are thought to date back more than 500 years as the descendants of shipwrecked Spanish mustangs, and today freely roam the beaches north of Corolla's paved town borders. Carova and 4WD beach explorers have the best chance of catching a glimpse of these beauties, which are slightly smaller in stature than modern horses, and visitors who are staying in the 4WD area may even encounter a view of the wild horses grazing in their own vacation rental home's backyard. Carova visitors will want to have a camera handy at all time in case these locals make an appearance, and despite their docile appearance, beach-goers will want to keep their distance, as these Outer Banks horses are unmistakably and ultimately completely wild. Visitors who want to learn their story can also make a stop at the Corolla Wild Horse Museum or sign up for a Corolla Wild Horse Tour for an in-depth look at these amazing OBX locals.

3. Watch The Sun Set at The Whalehead in Historic Corolla

Corolla Map It

The distinctive mustard yellow Whalehead in Historic Corolla has been an icon on the Outer Banks scene since it was first built in the 1920s as an opulent, private retreat, and has easily become one of the region's favorite attractions since it was opened to the public in 2002. A unique combination of attractions that includes a well-tended park, the historic "club" itself, and plenty of water access to enjoy an adventure on the Currituck Sound, visitors will soon discover that it's easy to spend an entire day at the Whalehead in Historic Corolla and never run out of things to do. Take a tour of the grand club's interior, which has been meticulously returned to its original glory years when it was first built by the wealthy Knight family, bring the kayaks along for a Currituck Sound paddle, or spread out a picnic blanket under one of the dozens of evergreen Live Oaks. An incredible site which cements Corolla's longstanding reputation as an elite yet rustic destination for the wealthy, the Whalehead in Historic Corolla is sure to impress Outer Banks visitors of all interests.

4. Go Boutique Shopping

Avid shoppers are thrilled when an occasional rainy or cloudy day hits the northern Outer Banks, as this is a prime excuse to take advantage of the multitude of shops that can be found throughout the towns of Duck and Corolla. In Duck, visitors will enjoy plenty of centralized parking and easy walking-distance access to a number of quaint and coastal plazas, like the Waterfront Shops, the Osprey Landing Shops, and the town's famed Scarborough Faire. Not to be undone, there are plenty of plazas to be found in neighboring Corolla too, including the Timbuck II Shopping Village and the Corolla Monteray Plaza Shopping Center. Browsers will find that all of the shopping centers in both towns feature coastal art galleries, summer clothing boutiques and surf shops, gift shops and jewelry stores, coffee shops and book stores, and a wealth of other locally owned establishments with one-of-a-kind and distinctive treasures. Off season and shoulder season visitors have the best chance of scoring the best bargains, especially on "Black Friday" and the fall months, when end-of-season sales give visitors the perfect opportunity to load up on deeply discounted, seaside themed gifts and holiday presents.

5.Stroll Through Duck Town Park and Boardwalk

Duck Map It

At just 11 acres in size, the Duck Town Park packs a lot of outdoor entertainment and incredible natural landscapes within a small, soundside locale. The park is an engaging destination for nature lovers of all varieties, including bird watchers, water lovers, walkers and joggers, and anyone just looking for a cool, breezy destination off the beach, and features picnic shelters, shaded gazebos, and plenty of hiking trails that lead through the maritime forest. Best of all, the Duck Town Park serves as the launching point for the expansive waterfront boardwalk which meanders along, and even hovers over, the miles-wide Currituck Sound, providing incredible sunset views and some of the best bird watching opportunities in the northern Outer Banks. Take a leisurely stroll around dusk to soak up Duck's romantic side, and enjoy incredible waterfront scenes at the very edge of this barrier island.

6. Explore Carova in a 4x4 Vehicle

Corolla Map It

There are few beaches along the East Coast that are as rustic, desolate and isolated as the 11 miles of shoreline that lies just north of Corolla, and longtime northern Outer Banks fans wouldn't have it any other way. The Carova area, also known informally as the "4WD Beaches," can only be accessed by a 4WD vehicle, as the name would suggest, from a sand ramp located at the very edge of Corolla's town borders. Though there are ample rental homes in the region, ranging from soundside cottages with fantastic Currituck Sound access to 18+ bedroom oceanfront mansions, there are no commercial businesses, no restaurants, no major amenities, and virtually no distractions apart from the miles of undeveloped seashores. This region is known for its exceptional solitude, great shelling, solid surf fishing, and occasional visits by the local wild horses, and visitors will find no shortage of open space to spread out a beach towel. Vacationers who didn't bring a 4WD vehicle along to explore the shore can even rent a Jeep for the day, or embark on a guided tour of the area which covers the sand from the town line to the Virginia state line, located miles away.

7. Enjoy Waterfront Fine Dining

The restaurant selection in Duck and Corolla is varied and decadent, with plenty of fantastic options for couples to enjoy a romantic dinner experience that will top the list of Outer Banks memories. For a more casual outing, vacationers will find plenty of waterfront bars that offer quick lunches and cool afternoon cocktails after a hard day at the beach, but the region really shines when it comes to decadent fine dining dinners that specialize in fresh local seafood. For an upscale evening out, check out local waterfront favorites like Aqua Restaurant, Kimball's Kitchen, or The Blue Point Bar and Grill. Many establishments are open late in the summertime, with seasonal live music, and couples will most certainly want to book a table around dusk to ensure the best chance to catch a waterfront sunset that compliments the overall spellbinding experience. Reservations are often encouraged or even required in the height of summer, so be sure and book early to ensure a spot at a scenic, waterfront table.

8. Try Currituck Sound Watersports

It's hard to beat the Atlantic-facing beaches in Duck and Corolla, but visitors would be remiss to miss the exceptional waterfront adventures that can be found in abundance in the Currituck Sound. This expansive and generally gentle body of water offers miles of outdoor fun for water enthusiasts of all varieties, and a trip on the sound is a perfect opportunity to dive into a favorite sport, or discover an entirely new way to enjoy the wide open waters. Stand up paddle barding and kayaking are two easy waterfront sports that are both readily available, and can be launched from virtually any locale along the Duck and Corolla soundside. Rentals are available by the hour or the day, while specialized sunset or eco-tours are perfect for newcomers who don't want to miss out on the fantastic views and abundant bird watching that this region is known for. Seafood lovers will want to try their hand at kayak fishing, crabbing or even clamming, which are all favorite soundside angling activities, while high-adrenaline adventurers can rent a jet ski for the afternoon, or sign up for a parasailing or banana boat tour that covers miles of this open water terrain. Regardless of how a visitor breezes through the water, the gorgeous sunsets, exceptional wildlife watching, and serene waterfront landscapes will surely make anyone a new and devoted Currituck Sound fan.

9. Listen to Live Music

If a cool drink and a little outdoor entertainment is a vacationer's idea of heaven, then Duck and Corolla will truly be a coastal paradise. The small town community has a surprisingly vibrant music scene, with plenty of outdoor venues that are unimposing and wide open to the public. Both The Whalehead in Historic Corolla in Corolla and the Duck Town Park feature weekly summer afternoon and evening live performances, while a large number of local restaurants and bars feature bands and performers on any given summer night for a little dining with a musical ambiance. The summer Outer Banks music season arguably cumulates on Columbus Day Weekend in Duck with the renowned annual Duck Jazz Festival. This celebration of all things jazz features two whole days of incredible music, attracts more than 7,000 musicians and jazz lovers every year, and is an ideal way to dive into the local music scene. The Mustang Music Festival on Columbus Day weekend brings live music to Corolla each year for the benefit of Corolla's Wild Horses. Regardless of how you soak up the local sounds, music lovers will find plenty of ways to unwind, kick back, and enjoy the local OBX music scene in these otherwise small and subdued coastal communities.

10. Relax On The Beach

On the Outer Banks, the beach is always the star attraction, and the northern section of shoreline that stretches from Duck all the way to the Virginia border in 4WD accessible Carova is among the Banks' best. With few crowds in any given part of the communities, wide sandy beaches, and plenty of waves for surfing and body boarding, the beaches in Corolla and Duck are essentially hard to beat. Visitors won't find hopping boardwalks, busy public accesses and parking lots, or concession stands on these shorelines, but they will find miles of room to roam, exceptional fishing, good shelling, (especially after a storm), plenty of bird watching, and an altogether serene atmosphere that will melt anyone into a vacation state of mind.

 

Southern Shores Realty

Southern Shores Realty

Southern Shores Realty offers over 700 Outer Banks rentals from Corolla to S. Nags Head.  We've been an Outer Banks tradition since 1947, providing families just like yours with memories that last a lifetime.  Take a moment to search through our extensive selection of Outer Banks rentals, choose your favorite, and book online today!

Surfing in the Outer Banks

Surfing in the Outer Banks

Forget Hawaii and California - on the East Coast, the best place for surf is on the Outer Banks, and this region is renowned as one of the best surfing destinations from New York to Florida. Surfers from all over the country and the world flock to the Outer Banks for the annual ESA tournament, or just after a storm swell, to paddle out to the Atlantic and enjoy some of the best waves on the coast.

Outer Banks Horseback

Outer Banks Horseback

We are the only company in the United States that provides horseback rides like its kind. It is an advantage that nobody should miss out on and an experience that you will never forget. We hope to meet as many of you guys as we can and be sure to look out for one of our newly added services in the Outer Banks - OBX this summer. Take care now!

Wright Brothers National Memorial

Wright Brothers National Memorial

The Wright Brothers National Memorial is a "Must See" attraction for any Outer Banks aviation enthusiast, history lover, and virtually any Kill Devil Hills vacationer who wants an up-close look at the towering granite structure that towers over the town's landscape.

Back Country Safari Tours

Back Country Safari Tours

Discover wild Spanish Mustangs and our unique Barrier Island ecology on the Wild Horse Safari. Explore over 30 miles of "off road" beach, dune and sand trail and ride with a professional naturalist guide in a custom 4x4 open-air Safari Cruiser or or experience the Beach Cruiser and Kayak Safari combination tour to paddle in the placid waterways of the wildlife rich Currituck Sound.  Beginner and intermediate paddles available. The Outer Banks Leader in off road Eco-Adventures! Where the Road  Ends....The Adventure Begins.

Sailing the Outer Banks

Sailing the Outer Banks

Vacationers will notice a handful of sailboats at every local Outer Banks port, either saddled up to the docks or breezing across the harbor, en route to the nearest sound for a cruise, or to the continent-spanning Intracoastal Waterway to continue a long coastal voyage. Some vacationers are even in it for the long haul, docking for a summer or a winter season at a number of local marinas that offer all the comforts of home. Clearly, sailing lovers of all varieties have plenty of options, but even newcomers to the sport can experiment with life on the water with a local sailing lesson, rental, or waterfront cruise.

TRiO

TRiO

Wine, beer and cheese lovers will love TRiO, an exciting retail and tasting destination in Kitty Hawk. Both a gourmet retail wine, beer and cheese shop as well as a bistro with a wine bar and tap house, TRiO offers the best of the worlds of wine, beer and cheese for your enjoyment on premise or in the comfort of your home. TRiO's bistro is elegant and comfortable, with a large bar and two-story dining and bar area. The gourmet bistro menu of appetizers, and light fare such as cheese and charcuterie, paninis and salads make TRiO a wonderful lunch and dinner restaurant. Unique and high-tech self service WineStations are available in the downstairs bar area, where you can sample full, half and tastes of wines of all regions at varying price ranges. If you prefer beer, you can select from 24 beers on tap or try a TRiO Flight and sample a taste of four beers. In the upstairs mezzanine, which is part of the bistro, you'll find comfortable lounge seating and a free pool table. TRiO also has live music from local and visiting artist 4-5 nights a week all year long.

Ocracoke Harbor

Ocracoke Harbor

The Ocracoke Harbor is easily the busiest quarter mile stretch of Ocracoke Island. Consisting of a small, lagoon-like section of saltwater, and lined by a semi-circle of docks, restaurants, shops, marinas and motels, visitors will find that any and all of the activities on Ocracoke Island can most certainly be found harbor front.

Donutz on a Stick

Donutz on a Stick

Stay, Play and Eat- Donuts, Ice cream and coffee treats!  Family Friendly, Duck's newest dessert shop features treats you've never tasted before!  Try their warm donutz on a stick with 35 toppings! They'll melt in your mouth!  Plus, try the 9 flavors of Tastefully Twisted soft serve.  Frozen yogurt, hand dipped and homemade ice cream flavors too.  Unique coffees and flavored-milks that will satisfy the whole family.  Mix-and-match candy and much more.  Take your picture with a 6ft Duck or show your skills on the Chalkboard Wall.  Come to Duck and bring the carnival to your mouth!

Event Homes

Event Homes

In the past few years, the Outer Banks has become a popular destination for large families and groups who are planning a beach wedding, a corporate retreat, or just a casual family reunion. This turn of recent events is due in no small part to the crop of sprawling vacation rental homes that have popped up throughout the coastline providing gorgeous accommodations, ample meeting or gathering spaces, and fantastic access to the nearby beaches and attractions.

Nor' Banks Sailing and Water Sports

Nor' Banks Sailing and Water Sports

Nor’Bank’s Sailing & Water Sports staff, equipment and location make them one of the premier water sports centers on the Outer Banks. Their friendly and professional staff make your visit with them both safe and fun. Their equipment is in outstanding condition and is kept to the highest safety standards. Nor’Banks sound front location has a grassy lawn, restrooms, showers, 200 foot pier and plenty of room for you to spend the day. Nor’Banks says its location, on the Currituck Sound just south of Sanderling, is ideal for water sports, “with low boat traffic, warm water, a sandy bottom and steady breezes!”