Spanning 100 miles of coastline, the Outer Banks is a strip of barrier islands separating the Atlantic Ocean from the North Carolina mainland. Known for its pristine, uncrowded beaches and rich history, the Outer Banks is one of the most popular vacation destinations on the East Coast. Peppered with maritime villages and stunning coastal scenery, the Outer Banks hums at a scaled back pace and offers unique charm found in few other areas of the US. Visitors to the Outer Banks often find themselves returning annually with their families.
Beaches, attractions, and activities in the Outer Banks
Guests of the Outer Banks have unlimited access to miles and miles of clean, uncrowded, family-friendly beaches. While beach access within the villages is limited to pedestrians, ORV access is available in many areas within the National Park (permit required.) Walk or drive out to the beach, set up your umbrella and cooler and spend the day lounging and splashing with your family and friends. Your pup is welcome to join you at the beach as long as he remains on a leash. While most beaches in the Outer Banks are unguarded, there are designated life-garded beaches where you can safely enjoy swimming in the waters of the Atlantic.
The Outer Banks is home to some famous landmarks and pieces of national history. The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is the tallest brick lighthouse in the United States and the tallest of any kind in North Carolina. The most famous of the Outer Banks’ five lighthouses, the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse is an exciting climb and a popular location for family photographs. History enthusiasts must visit the Wright Brothers Memorial in Kitty Hawk. This stunning memorial marks the location of Wilbur and Orville Wright’s first flights on December 17, 1903. Numerous marinas throughout the Outer Banks attract mariners and sight-seers all year long. Many of the area’s most popular attractions are baked right into the history and lifestyle of the Outer Banks.
While most people are content to relax on the stunning shores of the Outer Banks’ pristine beaches, some folks are seeking a little more action. Fortunately, the Outer Banks offers up some of the best surfing, kiteboarding and windsurfing on the east coast of the US. The close proximity of the Gulf Stream provides outstanding fishing; fisherman flock to the Outer Banks for offshore and inshore charter fishing, and plenty more enjoy surf fishing or casting from one of many local piers. Visitors are able to rent bikes, golf carts, kayaks, surfboards, chairs, umbrellas and virtually any other beach equipment you may need for an action-packed vacation getaway.
Plan your stay in an Outer Banks vacation rental
With homes ranging from cozy beach boxes to sprawling multi-family properties, the Outer Banks has a vacation rental for everyone. With homes on the ocean, the sound, and everywhere in between, Vacasa offers one of the largest inventories of Outer Banks vacation rentals available. Once you’ve caught your first Outer Banks sunset, you will decide it can’t be your last. Browse our Outer Banks vacation rentals and start planning an unforgettable beach vacation in North Carolina.
Discover the Outer Banks
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