There are lists upon lists of things to do with kids on the Outer Banks, and they’re very helpful when planning a trip to the beach for the summer. As many of these activities are geared towards young kids, we’ve switched gears and compiled a list of five suggestions that teenagers might enjoy.
Do your kids or teens love the water? Farmdog Surf School in Nags Head offers 3 Day Surf and Adventure Camp for children ages 8-12, and a Teen Camp for teens ages 13-17. These camps run Tues-Thurs from 9-12.
Fly a Stunt Kite
The Outer Banks may be the best place anywhere to fly a kite!
Jockey’s Ridge State Park in Nags Head is considered a world-class site, and when the wind is right, flying a kite on the beach is magic. There is also the grounds of the Whalehead Club in Corolla; perched beside Currituck Sound with an open lawn, there is almost always a breeze that allows for kite flying.
Be sure to get a stunt kite—a kite with either two or four lines. Single line kites are great for a family outing, but once they’re up in the air there isn’t much more to do. Stunt kites, on the other hand, can perform amazing aerial acrobatics.
The recommendation is to get a dual (two) line kite rather than a quad (four) line. Dual line kites are easier to learn on and less expensive to purchase and repair…assuming initially there may be some repairs required.
Quad line kites allow the flyer to do some pretty remarkable tricks though, so there is a tradeoff.
A little bit larger kite will be better than a smaller one. The more surface area there is to capture the wind, the lower wind speed in which it can fly. That will allow the teenage pilot to fly the kite at home. Additionally, that larger surface area will be a lot more exciting when the wind is blowing at 12-15 mph.
Alternate kite flying suggestion: Go hang gliding. It’s really just a gigantic kite.
Take a Hike
There are four protected maritime forests on the Outer Banks—Currituck Estuarine Reserve, Kitty Hawk Woods, Nags Head Woods and Buxton Woods. All of these areas offer environments that, for someone who may have only explored the local beaches, are surprising.
Kitty Hawk Woods and Nags Head Woods in particular offer an environment that includes some hills, upland trees and in the case of Nags Head Woods, deep ravines.
There are also much easier walking paths at Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge on Hatteras Island and Pine Island between Duck and Corolla. Those paths take walkers into the world of marsh and wetlands.
Alternate Suggestion: Kayak eco-tour. There are a number of outfitters who offer them and it’s a great way to learn about the ecology of the Outer Banks.
Dockside Theatre – 2017 Summer Signup
During the school year, Connie Rose is the head of the theatre department at Manteo High School; when the summer comes around she runs two theatre summer camps—one for 6-9 year olds, and one for 9-18. She also has theater production during the school year with her Dockside Theatre.
Connie is an outstanding drama teacher. She is particular good at building the self-confidence of the performers, a life skill that is important beyond the stage.
This is only available at very limited times, but for parents of kids who have been itching to try acting, this is perfect.
Summer Camp 1
Summer Camp 2
Coastal Studies Institute Summer Camps
Geared toward kids 10-15, there are camps that combine the fun part of science with outdoor activities. The camps run from 9:00 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday so there is some time commitment involved, but for the right students, it doesn’t get any better than this.
CSI is part of the UNC system, so the camps are geared toward science, although there is an Art and Science camp that should appeal to the up and coming outdoor artist.
Surf Science Camp: June 12-16, 2017
Coastal Science Camp: Exploring Estuaries: June 19-23, 2017
Surf Science Camp: July 10-14, 2017
Coastal Science Camp: Marine Science: July 17-21, 2017
Science and SCUBA Camp: July 24-28, 2017
Art and Science Camp: July 31 – August 4, 2017