The North Carolina Outer Banks will leave you timeless moments and priceless memories. Here is a sampling.
Historic Beach Cottage Row
Walking along the shore, you may come across Cottage Row. In the late 1800s to early 1900s, cottages began to appear long the coast of Nags Head located in the North Carolina Outer Banks. Notice the wood post buried in the sand. These are called sand fences. Erosion is an ever-present concern on the Outer Banks and these fences help significantly with the formation of protective sand dunes. The cottages share many similarities: large, shaded porches and unpainted, wood-shingled exteriors. Collectively, this row of cottages has acquired the nickname – The Unpainted Aristocracy. A few of them are available as rentals.
While the cottages are fun to look at, the view opposite the cottages will also impress.
Drive Along Highway 12
Highway 12 runs the length of the Outer Banks and offers spectacular views…especially in the southern segment. In the photo below, I am facing north with the Atlantic Ocean on the right and Pamlico Sound on the left. I would estimate that in some points along this road, there is less than 100 yards of sand separating the two bodies of water. You can pull over at your leisure to explore either or both sides.
I previously devoted a post to North Carolina Lighthouses. You can get to these three lighthouses while vacationing in the Outer Banks.
The Corolla Wild Horses
A tour or solo excursion to visit the Corolla Wild Horses seems to be an experience far too many vacationers miss when visiting the Outer Banks. I have post, The Wild Horses of Corolla, that discusses the history of these horses and includes many photos. Here are a few from that post:
There is an abundance of top-notch restaurants to visit in the Outer Banks. If you go this route while “in season”, plan ahead and make reservations. Aqua Restaurant & Spa provided for an excellent dinner location and perfect spot to take in a sunset. Dinner choice: sautéed shrimp with maple smoked cheddar grits, grilled zucchini, pearl onions, andouille sausage and a roasted red pepper coulis.
On another evening, anticipating the Chef’s special of the evening – seared tuna – at Blue Point Restaurant in the Outer Banks town of Duck.
One of the many cool aspects of being at the Outer Banks is that you get awesome sunrises on the Atlantic Ocean and equally gorgeous sunsets on the opposite shore of the island overlooking the Albemarle Sound.