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About Outer Banks

This impressive stretch of barrier islands extends along 200 miles of the North Carolina coast, protecting the state’s mainland from Atlantic swells and providing endless beaches and beautiful vistas for locals and tourists alike. Get ready to dive into the sandy shores and coastal culture on your next trip to the Outer Banks.
 

A Short History of the Outer Banks

Though the Outer Banks were settled by the English in the late 16th century, these barrier islands remained remote and isolated from North Carolina until the 1930s. As a result the culture here has remained distinct, and many natives even speak with a telltale brogue. You’ll also find wild horses on many of the islands, and if you believe the stories, they’re the descendants of mustangs who survived Spanish shipwrecks just offshore. There’s also plenty of pirate lore here, as the famous pirate Blackbeard met his end on the Outer Banks.
 

What the Outer Banks Do Best

Numerous islands make up the Outer Banks, and each offers its own reason to visit. Swim the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, visit the Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kitty Hawk, run with the wild horses in Corolla, and go back in time on Ocracoke.
 

Cape Hatteras

Home to much more than just sand and waves, Cape Hatteras National Seashore offers excellent swimming, iconic lighthouses, and impressive wildlife. Approach the seashore from Nags Head in the north or Ocracoke in the south, and keep in mind that while visiting the seashore is free, there’s a fee for climbing Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. If you’re looking for a home base in the Outer Banks, Cape Hatteras is a great choice with many vacation homes.
 

Kitty Hawk

Kitty Hawk is usually credited as the location where Orville and Wilbur Wright made their first flight, but Kill Devil Hills was actually the location of this momentous 1903 achievement. Today, visitors can feel the famous winds here and visit several attractions at the Wright Brothers National Memorial. Start at the visitor center, home to models and tools that the Wright brothers used; tour the hangars, reconstructions of the original sheds where the brothers lived and housed their plane; and walk along the original flight path.
 

Corolla

If you’re looking for the perfect blend of city and shore, make Corolla your destination. The village has plenty of boutiques for shopping, spas for relaxing, and restaurants for enjoying a nice ...

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