Beaches
Sixteen miles of secluded, natural beaches with no houses or high rises in sight. It’s the perfect place for shelling, surf fishing, swimming, and endless walks. Grab take-out for dinner under the stars around a campfire on the beach. Or go for a sunrise drive along the water’s edge in a 4x4 vehicle. It’s all waiting to be explored.
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National Park Service
Undeveloped beaches. Wild ponies. A historic lighthouse. It’s all here for you to explore and enjoy thanks to the care and protection of the National Park Service.
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Ocracoke Banker Ponies
On a 188-acre plot of land, behind a wooden fence, lives the herd of Ocracoke Banker Ponies, descendants of Spanish mustangs turned wild ponies that survived a shipwreck hundreds of years ago offshore.
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Ocracoke Lighthouse
The oldest lighthouse still in operation in North Carolina and the second oldest in the nation. Hand-built in 1823 and boasting 5-foot-thick brick walls at the base, this is a piece of history that is cherished by locals, Outer Bankers, North Carolinians, and lighthouse aficionados, alike.
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Springer’s Point Nature Preserve
A tranquil maritime forest with abundant wildlife, centuries-old live oaks, and traces of historic structures. It’s also the beach where Blackbeard and his crew met their fate at the hands of the British Navy.
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Hammock Hills Nature Trail
Marsh views, old dunes, and a diverse collection of plants and wildlife. Bring your four-legged friends for an easy hike through some of the highest wooded points on the island.
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Portsmouth Island
Located a short boat ride away from Ocracoke Island stands a historic village on Portsmouth Island. Here, you’ll find a post office, church, schoolhouse, Lifesaving Station, and many lovely homes. The only thing missing is people.
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Fishing
An industry that fueled and sustained our island’s economy. A leisure activity for some. A competitive sport for others. No matter what drives your interest in fishing, all are welcome to cast here.
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Watersports
Sixteen miles of uncrowded shores boasting tropical water temperatures and gentle surf in the summer—and wetsuit weather with heavy waves in the winter—make watersports enjoyable year-round.
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Biking
With its comfortably flat terrain and bike racks aplenty, this island was practically built for being explored on two wheels. For locals and visitors, alike, biking is a relaxing way to move about the day.
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Kayaking and Paddle Boarding
Glide along the smooth open water of the Pamlico Sound. If you enjoy kayaking or paddle boarding—or ever wanted to try them in a safe, spacious place—Ocracoke Island is for you.
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Birdwatching
More than 400 species of birds, passing through, weathering a storm, making a home, or moving on. Grab your binoculars and download the latest birding app because you’re going to need them here.
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Marinas
From quick, no-frills slips to marinas with pubs, ramps, and abundant island activities (think: jet ski rentals and more), Ocracoke Island is more than a place to park your boat.
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Camping
Sleeping under the stars with the sound of the waves crashing outside your tent. Hanging out by the grill making new friends with fellow RVers. No matter your style of camping, Ocracoke has a place for you.
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Shelling
Whelks. Coquinas. Queen Helmet Conchs. Periwinkles. Sand dollars. And the elusive Scotch Bonnet. Bring a bucket or a bag, roll up your sleeves (and pants legs, too), and prepare for the haul of your life.
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Waterfowl Hunting
Our haven for migratory waterfowl makes for a sport gunner’s paradise. Experience what the Pamlico Sound has to offer and learn something new along the way with guides that grew up on these waters.
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