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!

5 Reasons You Should Visit The North Carolina Coast this Fall

Summer might be over, but your beach vacations don’t have to be! Fall is actually one of the best times to visit the North Carolina coast. Carolina Retreats provides plenty of relaxing stays year-round, and you’ll love having fewer crowds. To help you decide why you should start planning your trip to the coast, we’ve made a list of 5 reasons you should take a vacation to the NC Coast this fall.

1. Soak Up Mild Temperatures & Warm Water

High summer temps and humidity not for you? Warm days and chilly nights are a staple of the North Carolina coast during autumn. Averaging 70 degrees on most days, you can comfortably relax on the beach during the day or go on a nice boat cruise. While the nights are a bit cooler, they make for a refreshing evening, perfect for strolling around town. Especially nice are the water temperatures, averaging around 70 degrees, making it ideal for a relaxing dip or shell searching. It is also the ideal time to take some surf lessons or rent a kayak! 

2. The Best Sunrises and Sunsets

While our sunsets and sunrises are beautiful year-round, it is known among locals that the most spectacular ones occur during the cooler months. These picturesque skies are attributed to the lack of haze and humidity, along with weather patterns that allow for dry, clean air to sweep across the coast during the fall months. It’s the perfect time of year to cozy up on the back porch and soak up the beautiful views. 

3. Enjoy Lower Rates & No Fighting the Crowds

Fighting crowds for the perfect beach spot is not your thing? With the off-season in full swing, your dreams of a deserted stretch of beach have come true. With the busy summer crowds gone, there are plenty of wide-open beaches and shorelines to stretch out and relax. Additionally, the lower rates on rentals are the cherry on top! 

4. Fall Fishing!

There’s no better time than fall for fishing along the North Carolina coast. The beaches of the Outer Banks are favorites for surf fishermen, while the backwaters of Topsail are abounding with red drum, trout, and more. Looking for a more off-shore experience? Guided trips can be readily booked in whatever location you are visiting. Or, try your hand at pier fishing, with over 19 piers on the NC Coast, you are sure to find your perfect spot. Do you prefer more of a competitive edge? Plenty of annual fishing tournaments occur in the fall each year. Check out the annual Topsail Fall Surf & Pier Challenge in Topsail (https://www.fishermanspost.com/tournaments/topsail-fall-surf-fishing-challenge) or the Eastern Carolina Trout Tournament in Jacksonville (https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100039607877418

5. Take A Break From Your Routine

The North Carolina coast in autumn is the perfect setting to connect with nature and take a break from the stresses of the day-to-day. Whether it’s on a long walk on the beach, lying on a blanket on the sand, relaxing on the back porch, or enjoying the sunrise, these little moments will fill your soul and recharge your batteries. #You Deserve This!