During your next Outer Banks vacation, why not schedule an adventure that includes exploring a few unique town highlights? This is a great way to learn more about Outer Banks’ towns and communities, while enjoying time spent with family and friends. Some selections are well known, while others are hidden gems, but all allow visitors to explore extraordinary features of the Outer Banks.
COROLLA: Outer Banks Center for Wildlife Education
Located in Currituck Heritage Park, the Outer Banks Center for Wildlife Education shares the grounds with the Whalehead Club and Currituck Beach Lighthouse, two sites that seem to receive all the press. The museum, though, is every bit as fascinating as its famous neighbors. This remarkable museum guides visitors through the history of Currituck Sound and its ecosystem and is filled with family friendly exhibits and hands-on demos.
DUCK: Duck Boardwalk
One of the most unique features in the town of Duck is its boardwalk. Not quite a mile in length, the boardwalk parallels the Currituck Sound shoreline. Constructed to be in harmony with the surroundings, the boardwalk provides a boat slip and kayak dock and offers views of beautiful Outer Banks sunsets.
SOUTHERN SHORES: Flattops
Interspersed among the modern vacation homes along NC12 in Southern Shores are single story homes with flat roofs. Built in the late 1940s and early 50s, the flattops were the creation of artist Frank Stick and his son, David, a well-known Outer Banks writer. They are now considered outstanding examples of period architecture. In order to construct affordable homes for a burgeoning tourist industry, the father and son team used native woods and Outer Banks sand for the cement walls. These homes are privately owned, so please observe them from the roadway or multi-use path.
KITTY HAWK: Sandy Run Park
A remarkably beautiful location, Sandy Run Park, is located on The Woods Road next to the Kitty Hawk Garden Center. This area is a great introduction to the marsh and maritime forest environment that is so much a part of the Outer Banks ecology. The park is made up of a mile long loop trail that wanders through woodlands and circles a pond. Suitable for children of all ages, the park provides an observation platform, kayak launch sites and catch and release fishing piers. A camera is a must-have accessory for a visit.
KILL DEVIL HILLS: KDH Cooperative
Located on the west side of the Bypass in Kill Devil Hills, there is an older bright blue building with a winged horse out front. This building is home to the KDH Cooperative, an artist’s co-op that houses an extraordinary collection of art of most every kind, including oil, acrylic, watercolor and pastel paintings, photography, ceramics, jewelry, fibers, pottery, glass, mosaic and metal art. It’s always staffed by one of the member artists, and the co-op consistently features some of the best art around.
NAGS HEAD: Jennette’s Pier
The most spectacular pier on the Outer Banks, Jennette’s Pier reaches 1000’ into the Atlantic Ocean. The newly constructed concrete structure replaces a historic wooden pier that was destroyed by Hurricane Isabelle. The pier is host to a number of annual events, workshops and family friendly activities that are regularly updated on their website. It is also a well known fishing location and is home to a small aquarium and gift shop that are a part of the NC Aquarium Society.
MANTEO: Roanoke Island Festival Park
A 25-acre waterfront park that is adjacent to downtown Manteo, the Roanoke Island Festival Park is a wonderful place to learn about our rich history while enjoying family friendly events and interactive displays. Don’t miss the Elizabeth II, a replica of a 16th century merchant ship, American Indian Town, The Settlement and The Roanoke Adventure Museum. The park also has an Indoor Theater and Outdoor Pavilion and hosts a multitude of seasonal performances and concerts.