Keryn Means a RoamRight Blog Author

Exploring North Carolina’s Outer Banks With Kids

Outer Banks is a 200-mile long string of narrow barrier islands off the coast of North Carolina

The beautiful thing about the Outer Banks, especially the lower half of this section of North Carolina, is that there is very little to do other than enjoy the beach. Although you can certainly spend every waking hour in the sand and surf, there are also a few highlights you will want to make sure you don’t miss.

Cape Hatteras Lighthouse

Inside the Cape Hatteras National Seashore is one of America’s treasured lighthouses. For a small admission free you can enter the grounds, explore the historic buildings and climb to the top of Cape Hatteras Lighthouse, the tallest in the United States. Near by, also within Cape Hatteras National Seashore, you will find a great family beach to practice your boogie boarding skills. Make sure you pack your gear if you head down to the lighthouse to explore.

Jockey’s Ridge State Park

Grab your family and climb the tallest natural sand dune system in the Eastern United States. These hills were made for kite flying but hiking and hang gliding are also easy sports to do in the park. Keep in mind that during the summer months the sand can be 25 to 30 degrees hotter than the air. Early morning adventures are recommended, as well as shoes. Even sandals may not be able to protect you from the burning sand.

Wright Brothers National Memorial

Wilbur and Orville Wright changed the way we travel forever with their flight experiments in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. Kids can earn a junior ranger badge at the memorial and also take part in “Kite Flight,” a kite-building demo that will inspire your kids to build their own flying contraptions to take to the skies.

North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island

This tiny, but educational aquarium is great to keep your kids busy on a rainy day. Watch the river otter play and the turtles sun themselves before you move onto the alligator pond. Touch tanks filled with rays and invertebrates are a fun way to let you kids touch a few creatures they don’t normally get to see as they wade into the waters off the coast of NC. Special programs are regularly offered throughout the day including a program just for toddlers, and numerous behind-the-scenes experiences that are affordable for the whole family to enjoy.

Carova Beach

It’s not every day that you get to see wild Spanish mustangs on the beach; the horse, not the car. A 4x4 off-road vehicle is necessary to drive on the beach, but once there you can enjoy the beauty and peace and quiet of this hard to access spot. Tours are available to bring you out if you don’t have access to a 4x4 vehicle. Just remember to respect the horses’ space and read all signs you see. There are federally protected lands on this beach. Also note that horse sightings are not guaranteed, but a gorgeous beach atmosphere is always available.

Uncle Eddy’s Frozen Custard and 18-Hole Mini Golf

Not everyone may think of frozen custard as a destination, but once you have a taste you won’t question your decision to head down to the tiny town of Buxton on the Outer Banks ever again. It is the perfect treat for a hot summer day, whether you play a round of mini golf or not. Portions are not small, and flavors are as simple as vanilla or as fun as Samoa and Scotch Bonnet. Various sundaes and shakes are available, just make sure it has their homemade frozen custard in it. You won’t be sorry.

Have you been to the Outer Banks? What are your best tips?

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About the Author

Keryn Means

Keryn Means, a RoamRight Blog Author Keryn is an East Coast native living life as a freelance writer in Seattle surrounded by her two little boys and one incredible husband. When not dragging the men in her life across the globe you can find Keryn writing on her blog Walking On Travels, a site that gives hope to today's modern parent that doesn't see kids as a roadblock to travel, but an excuse to get out the door and explore. Keryn has laughed at the naysayers by bringing her boys to far off lands like China, Hong Kong, Japan, Hawaii, back and forth across the USA, Mexico, Canada, and even across Europe. Keryn loves to encourage families to take that first step out the door, the hardest step of all. Follow Keryn on TwitterFacebookInstagramPinterest, and Google Plus.

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