5 Things to do During the Off-Season in the Outer Banks

If you think the off-season is a bad time to take a trip to the Outer Banks, think again! With cooler temps, fewer crowds, and delicious food, one of our favorite ways to enjoy the Outer Banks is during the supposed “off-season.” Check out the list below for our favorite things to do during the cooler months.

1. Go Sightseeing, Without the Crowds

Not a fan of waiting in long lines? With fewer crowds, the offseason is the perfect time of year to explore all the sights that the Outer Banks have to offer. Take a trip to the Lost Colony or visit the famous Bodie Island Lighthouse. Whether you are a history buff or a nature fanatic, the Outer Banks offers something for everyone. Click Here for a detailed list of attractions in the Outer Banks region.

2. Enjoy Fresh, Local Seafood

Seafood is not just for summer. In fact, the cooler months bring out some of the best seafood the North Carolina Coast has to offer! Fresh oysters and big, sweet crabs are a staple of the Outer Banks fall. Prefer a more hands-on experience? Cast your own line at the shore, or head to your favorite pier to catch yourself some fresh dinner. Seafood, not your thing? Not to worry – there are plenty of other options for those who prefer more land-based meals. Click Here for all a guide to the best restaurants in the OBX.

3. Enjoy Spectacular Sunrises & Sunsets

While the sunsets and sunrises on the Outer Banks are beautiful year-round, it is known among locals that the most spectacular ones occur during the cooler months. Mostly attributed to the lack of haze and humidity, along with weather patterns that allow for dry, clean air to sweep across the coast, making for the most picturesque sky. Head to favorite spots, like the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge or Jockey’s Ridge State Park, for the chance to see unobstructed views and beautiful skies. 

4. Relax with a Fire on the Beach

In need of some relaxing? How about a beach fire? In the offseason, beach fires are allowed, on beaches in Nags Head and along the Cape Hatteras National Seashore (with regulations). The fall season also means 4×4 vehicles are allowed (some rules do apply, so read before you ride). You can even bring your pup along, depending on which area or town you’re in. Spend some time reconnecting with nature and your loved ones on the beach.

5. Take a Drive Up and Down Highway 12

Photo Credit: Grave Yard of the Atlantic Museum

With less traffic, the offseason makes for the perfect time to take drive up Highway 12. If you enjoy beautiful scenic drives, then NC Highway 12 is for you. Take a trip all the way north to Corolla, or head south. Continue south through Nags Head and explore the Outer Banks Scenic Byway. Drive all the way through Cape Hatteras National Seashore, where you can even ferry over to Ocracoke. You’ll be able to explore the Outer Banks in all its glory, without having to worry about sitting in traffic or long ferry lines.

Whatever you choose to do, the Outer Banks off-season has something for everyone! Book your next trip today!