The Bluewater Vacation Rental Blog has everything you need to know for your Crystal Coast vacation, plus so much more that you’ll want to know, too! You get it all straight from the locals at Bluewater Vacation Rentals who live and play here along the coast.

We’re covering Emerald Isle to Beaufort and everything in between to ensure you make the most out of the time you spend with us right here in coastal North Carolina. Can’t find what you’re looking for? No worries, just reach out to our Guest Relations team by phone or send us a message on social media. We’re always happy to help!

banner image of clouds and sky for the 6 Crystal Coast Vacation Itinerary Options post

6 Crystal Coast Vacation Itinerary Options

banner image of clouds and sky for the 6 Crystal Coast Vacation Itinerary Options post

6 Crystal Coast Vacation Itinerary Options

Planning a vacation can be a bit of a daunting task. We thought we’d take some of the guesswork out of what to do and give you 6 different Crystal Coast vacation itinerary options to choose from. There’s certainly no shortage of things to do. You just need to decide how to get in all in. Mix and match or use one of our suggested itineraries. Whatever you choose, have fun! 

  1.  Keep Them Occupied: A schedule to wear out the most enthusiastic kids

    • Day 1 – Catch a Marlins Baseball game in Morehead 
    • Day 2 – Go Geo Cashing around town. It’s like a giant treasure hunt. See www.geocaching.com/play. When you’re done, grab some pizza at Pizza Inn! 
    • Day 3 – Have the little ones compete to see who can find the biggest seashell or shark’s tooth on the beach.
    • Day 4 – Take the kids to one of our many parks and let them burn off some energy! See: Jean Preston Memorial Park Playground and Emerald Woods 
    • Day 5 – Ride a Banana Boat with the whole gang at Island Water Sports
    • Day 6 – Take the kids to MacDaddy’s for bowling, skeeball, pinball, and a video game room full of fun!
    • Day 7 – Ride the ferry to Ocracoke and take the kids to see the Ocracoke Banker Ponies
  2.  A Little Romance: A list of activities that are sure to put a spark in your vacation
  3.  Adventure Enthusiasts: Accept the challenge of these adrenaline-filled activities
    • Day 1 – Rent bikes and go on a bike ride in the Croatan Forest
    • Day 2 – Try your hand at hang gliding with Kitty Hawk Kites 
    • Day 3 – Go on a paddleboarding adventure with Paddle NC!
    • Day 4 – Try scuba diving NC off the coast of Beaufort where our world-famous shipwreck graveyard leaves lots to explore 
    • Day 5 – Go kayaking on Hammocks Beach and Bear Island
    • Day 6 Go skydiving
    • Day 7 – Go deep sea fishing with Capt. Stacy
  4.  Rainy Days: In the chance of inclement weather here are a few ideas to keep you occupied
  5.  Adults Only: A list just for the grown-ups 
  6.  History Buffs: This Crystal Coast itinerary is for History lovers 

These 6 simple itinerary ideas are just a start! We hope they’ll help you find something that everyone will enjoy. Let us know if you decide to try some of these suggestions out. We’d love to hear from you! 

Photo of a person fishing at the beach: one of our favorite things to do in Atlantic Beach NC

Don’t Miss These 5 Things to Do in Atlantic Beach, NC

Photo of a person fishing at the beach: one of our favorite things to do in Atlantic Beach NC

Don’t Miss These 5 Things to Do in Atlantic Beach, NC

There’s a reason why so many people return to the Crystal Coast to vacation year after year. Maybe it’s the endless stretch of beaches or the diversity of activities available in the area. We think it’s the fact that every town on the coast is brimming with its own unique charm, landscape, history, and attractions. Today, we’re sharing a few great things to do in Atlantic Beach, NC. 

banner image for things to do in Atlantic beach

Put these 5 Things to do in Atlantic Beach, NC on your List

If you want to experience some of the best beaches, fishing, and parks in North Carolina, then Atlantic Beach is the place for you. There are many things to do in Atlantic Beach, NC, but you cannot miss these five things!

1- Sandy Beaches

It should go without saying that Atlantic Beach is home to beautiful beaches (it’s in the name, after all). Whether you want to relax with the sand between your toes or spend a day on the water, there are three available beach accesses in town. Spend your days at the beach swimming, shelling, surfing, or stand-up paddleboarding. Stop at Island Water Sports if you need a rental to explore the water. 

2- World-Class Fishing

Atlantic Beach has been named one of the top ten “Best Fishing Towns in America” by the World Fishing Network. So if you are an angler, Atlantic Beach is the coastal town for you! Spend a day casting your line into the water at the Oceanana Fishing Pier or fish with an expert on one of the fishing charter boats at the Atlantic Beach Causeway.

3- Fort Macon State Park

Fort Macon State Park in Atlantic Beach is one of the most visited state parks in North Carolina. History buffs will love touring the Civil War fort and the fascinating exhibits in the museum. But, this state park has something for everyone, with hiking trails, fishing, picnicking, and swimming all available here. Don’t miss out on the attractions at Fort Macon when vacationing to the Crystal Coast.

4- Seafood Restaurants

With all the things to do in Atlantic Beach, it won’t be long before you work up an appetite. If you are fishing at the Oceanana Pier, you might as well head inside the Pier House Restaurant for a delicious seafood lunch with a view. Popular spots for dinner in Atlantic Beach include the local’s favorite Amos Mosquito’s, where you can get a variety of fresh fish and decadent desserts – and make sure Bahia House and Island Grille are on your list as well.

5- Parks and Trails

The Crystal Coast is a popular destination for families, so there are many family-friendly activities in Atlantic Beach. Spend an afternoon at the AB Town Park playing a round of miniature golf, taking the kids to the skateboard park, or cooling down at the splash pad in the summer months. If you’re looking for a relaxing place to take a short walk, visit the Hoop Pole Creek Preserve. This nature preserve offers an easy hike everyone can enjoy while taking in beautiful waterfront views.  

Photo of living room overlooking the beach at one of our Atlantic Beach vacation rentals

Atlantic Beach Vacation Rentals

If these things to do in Atlantic Beach, NC, piqued your interest, then start planning your Atlantic Beach getaway with us today. Our Atlantic Beach vacation rentals are centrally located and just a short drive away from all of the previously mentioned attractions. Join us in Atlantic Beach and make memories that will last a lifetime during your Crystal Coast vacation. 

What is your favorite thing to do in Atlantic Beach? Let us know in the comments below!

banner image for the vacation rental home 2 step

Take a Peek Inside 2 Step on Emerald Isle

banner image for the vacation rental home 2 step

Take a Peek Inside 2 Step on Emerald Isle

We’re giving you the scoop with a peek inside this lovely vacation home. Take a closer look at 2 Step on Emerald Isle and decide if this is the perfect rental for you and your family on the Crystal Coast.

2 Step Details

2 Step is a 3-bedroom, 3-bathroom, ranch-style home with beautiful views of the ocean and just a couple of steps from private beach access to the sand and sea!

With 2 Steps, gathering your belongings and groceries doesn’t require climbing a full flight of steps! Plus, there is no need to leave your fluffy four-legged friends at home because this gem is pet-friendly. The added convenience of a large, level yard makes this the perfect vacation spot for all of your outdoor games with the family, and for your pets to run around freely.

Master bedroom #1 has a king bed, its own private ensuite bathroom, and a TV. Bedroom #2 has a queen bed, a private bathroom, and a TV. Bedroom #3 has a queen bed, a twin bunk, and a TV. A full bathroom is conveniently located in the hallway. There are ceiling fans in each bedroom that can be controlled via the light switch along with the bedroom lights. The fully-equipped kitchen has stainless steel appliances and the home is equipped with a washer and dryer!

Scroll through to take a look inside

Guest Testimonials

Wonderful, comfortable home that is close to the beach. My family loved that the house was updated. We enjoyed the board games as a family and the big dining table to play on and eat together every night. We rented bikes and had fun biking and the island and on the beach. We would definitely stay at this beach house again! – Stephanie H. | March 2021
2 Step has been the perfect home for our family of 4, plus our dog! A short walk to the beach and a short drive to the grocery stores and restaurants. The home is well stocked and is very clean. We would definitely rent again! – Mary L. | July 2019

Take a closer look at all 2 Step has to offer you and book online below! Questions? Prefer to have one of our Vacation Planners help you book? Call us at (866) 231-5892  between the hours of 8:30 AM – 5:30 PM, daily.

Dog friendly establishments on the Crystal Coast

Dog-Friendly Places on The Crystal Coast

Dog friendly establishments on the Crystal Coast

Dog-Friendly Places on The Crystal Coast

If you’re a dog lover, you know it isn’t always easy to find pet-friendly places while you’re traveling. Today, we’re sharing dog-friendly places on the Crystal Coast so you and your dog can have a worry-free vacation with us.

restaurants that are pet-friendly on the crystal coast

Dog-Friendly Establishments

The Growler 

This local bar has plenty of beer and good times! With lots of different beers on tap and others in constant rotation, this place is perfect for everyone. Oh yeah, your pup is welcome too! Bring your pup inside to enjoy the bar or outside for games and fun!

Carolina Home and Garden

This nursery is filled with gorgeous plants and landscaping and inside they have a boutique and store! Friday and Saturday nights are filled with wine, beer, music, and your pup! Dogs are very welcome to come and enjoy as well.

Muttigans Coffee

This pet store/coffee shop is an island favorite! Their dog-themed lattes and the dog-loving atmosphere are perfect for a morning coffee with your best friend. They have two locations; one in Swansboro and one in Emerald Isle.

The Trading Post

This southern food restaurant is also dog-friendly outdoors! Located right on Emerald Isle this place is perfect for a night out with your dog! They have an outdoor area with corn-hole and games to enjoy as well!

Mythic Brewing

This beer garden bungalow is a perfect place to bring your pup! Enjoy some beers with your furry pal! Its located in Cedar Point and is a highly recommended stop with your dog.

34 North

Enjoy drinks, live music, food trucks, and a game of Cornhole in their outdoor patio 

Bring your dog to the crystal coast

Take Your Pup To the Beach

  • Dogs are always welcome on the beach
  • Dogs must be on a leash on all public beaches
  • Make sure to clean up after your dog

Dog-Friendly Activities

  • Take a ferry ride and explore the Barrier Islands, Cape Lookout, and Shackleford Banks
  • Take a “w-a-l-k” on the bike path in Emerald Isle

Pet-Friendly Parks and Trails

  • Emerald Isle Park Trail
  • Fort Macon State Park
  • Hammocks Beach State Park
  • PAWS Bark Park

Dog treats you can make while on vacation

Cool Treats for your Dog

Peanut Butter and Berry Puppy Pops

Blend yogurt, bananas, peanut butter, and berries in a food processor. Pour the liquid mixture into a mold. Freeze for 2-3 hours and enjoy!

Watermelon Carrot Pupsicles 

Cut up some watermelon and carrots and make sure there are no seeds. Puree starting with the carrots and then add the watermelon chunks. Pour into a mold, freeze until solid, and devour! 

Pet-Friendly Vacation Rentals on the Crystal Coast

Don’t forget, we have over 185 pet-friendly vacation rentals where dogs stay free. Find the perfect place for you and your best friend! 

 

banner image of a surfer standing at the shoreline

An Itinerary for Thrill-Seekers on the Crystal Coast

banner image of a surfer standing at the shoreline

An Itinerary for Thrill-Seekers on the Crystal Coast

Beach vacations for most of us can be summed up in one word: Relaxation. But a few thrill-seekers on the Crystal Coast look for an itinerary that’s a bit more adventurous. If that sounds like you, or someone you know, we’ve got some great suggestions for a vacation that’s a pure adrenaline rush.

1 – Hike or Bike the Crystal Coast

For thrill-seekers on the Crystal Coast looking for more than our sandy shores, there’s plenty to do. Maritime forests run wild through our coast, offering hiking and biking trails for you to discover. Fort Macon Nation Park has a wonderful trail along the beach and through the trees offering a great place to get your muscles burning while you enjoy the outdoors.

Welcome sign, map and Weetock Trail sign with forest trees in the background

Hikers in Western Carteret County might want to try the 5.5-mile segment of the beautiful Weetock Trail near Haywood Landing Boating Access Area off Highway 58 North of Cedar Point. This is a great trail for beginners or seasoned hikers.

2 – Dive the Crystal Coast

If you prefer an underwater adventure, take an excursion with a local dive company and scuba dive one of the hundreds of wrecks along our Crystal Coast. Explore the secrets the ocean floor has been holding onto for all these years. Marine life runs wild below sea level, so plan to discover marine life up-close that you never thought you would experience in your lifetime.

There is plenty to see, too. The NC Coast is known as The Graveyard of the Atlantic. Its historic shipwrecks make it a top destination for scuba divers, from beginners to advanced.

 

3 – Play on the Water

If exploring the depths of the ocean isn’t up your alley, don’t let that stop you from enjoying the ocean. The breaks of the waves at the surface can be your playground!  Choose from stand-up paddleboards, surfboards, kiteboards, skimboards, and bodyboards to play in the waves or at the shoreline – just choose your favorite board.

a surfer at sunset catching waves with a pink, blue and purple sky in the background

If you didn’t travel with your own board, no need to fret. There are plenty of surf shops and rental companies where you can rent one during your vacation. If you prefer not to venture out on your own – there are tours with guides that will show you our coast and give you a real local’s view of the waterways.

4 – Skydive the Crystal Coast

Looking for the ultimate thrill? How about breathtaking views of the Crystal Coast from above? Crystal Coast Skydiving will take you up to an altitude of 9,000 feet, and while you’re ascending you may have the opportunity to see large schools of fish, dolphins, sharks, and the wild horses on Shackleford Banks.

tandem skydivers on the ground celebrating their skydive

If 30 seconds of freefall sounds exhilarating then add this to your vacation itinerary while you’re staying with us on the southern Outer Banks.

Here are a few more ideas for Crystal Coast thrill-seekers:

Interested in a few more vacation activities while you’re on the southern Outer Banks? Check out the following blog posts:

Are you more of a thrill-seeker or someone who’d rather relax on the beach? Which of the activities we mentioned would you try first? Let us know in the comment below! 

Banner Image 2021 October Events on the Crystal Coast

Spotlight: October Events on the Crystal Coast

Banner Image 2021 October Events on the Crystal Coast

Spotlight: October Events on the Crystal Coast

Whether you’re vacationing with us or you’re a local, There’s always something to look forward to and always fun to be had. Don’t miss any of these October events on the Crystal Coast.

MILL CREEK’S HAUNTED WOOD

Every Friday and Saturday in October – Dusk until 10:30 PM

Eerie looking bird in a leafless tree at night during a full moon during spooky October Events on the Crystal Coast

2365 Miller Creek Road, Newport, NC 28570

Take a walk through Mill Creek’s Haunted Woods that features a blood cemetery, Noose Creek Bridge, Johnny’s Maze, The Butcher Shop Open Air Meat Market, Mill Creek Chemical Corp, smoke-filled tunnels, lots of monsters, ghouls, and candy for the kids.


5th ANNUAL ATLANTIC BEACH KING MACKEREL TOURNAMENT

Recurring daily from October 2, 2021 – October 23,  2021

Man surrounded by deep sea fishing poles on a boat

Out of all the October events on the Crystal Coast, this is an annual favorite! The Atlantic Beach King Mackerel Fishing Tournament is a non-profit fundraiser supported entirely by volunteers with the mission of purchasing lifesaving equipment for the AB Fire department.  All money donated is tax-deductible due to the 501(c)(3) status of the Atlantic Beach King Mackerel Fishing Tournament, Inc.


SIP AND SEA BEAUFORT WINE AND FOOD 2021

champagne flutes on a table with appetizers

October 7, 2021 – October 10, 2021 

beaufortwineandfood@gmail.com – (252) 515-0708

A wine and food weekend experience that pays homage to our rich maritime roots by pairing fine wine and spirits with the culinary talents of Carteret County.

10/7 | 5:30 – 9:30 pm: Featuring six talented chefs, craft cocktails, fine wine pairings, and an unforgettable setting. Join us for a five-course dinner and cocktail hour on Beaufort’s scenic waterfront.

10/8 | 3 – 6 pm: The fashion event of the season featuring the latest trends, signature cocktails, delicious appetizers, and an exciting shopping experience!

10/9 | 2 – 5 pm: Shucking Good Time – Experience a one-of-a-kind seafood event, featuring local oysters, shrimp, and clam farmers paired with the best Chefs in town! Spirit tastings, local artisans, and live music will set the scene while overlooking the views of a down east waterfront oasis. The event will take place at Beau Coast Development

10/10 | 11 am – 2 pm: Blues, Bubble and Brunch – Featuring the talented Michael Lee behind acclaimed M Sushi, M Kokko, and M Tempura. Chef Lee will bring his big city taste to the town of Beaufort. Don’t miss this event that will bring local seafood to a new level. The event will take place at Beaufort Hotel.


2ND ANNUAL VFW POST 9960 OPEN CAR SHOW

October 9, 2021 – 9 AM – 3 PM

Beautiful classic cars lined up

Mac Daddy’s Entertainment Center – 130 Golfin Dolphin Drive, Cape Carteret, NC 28584 – Call: 252.393.6565

FREE – Registration will begin at 9 AM. Contact Dolly Witt at 919.922.9409 for details.

You could be one of these lucky winners: 

  • Best in Show 2021-1988
  • Best in Show 1987 – Older
  • Best in Bike
  • Sponsor’s Choice
  • Best Ford, General Motors, Mopar, Import, Engine, Interior, or Paint
  • Children’s Hot Wheels Race
  • 50/50 Raffle

Fun for the whole family! 


INTRODUCTION TO WOODEN BOAT BUILDING COURSE

October 9, 2021 – October 10, 2021 – 9:30 AM – 4:30 PM

Boat Building Course In October Events on the Crystal Coast

North Carolina Maritime Museum – 315 Front Street, Beaufort, NC 28516 – Call: 252.504.7758

Intro to Wooden Boat Building – Students explore the art of boatbuilding in this two-day hands-on course, beginning with lofting, and moving on to the setup, steam bending, and different methods of creating the backbone of small boats. They also learn planking methods, both carvel and lapstrake, and the use of appropriate fasteners. After two days, students will have the knowledge, skill, and confidence to choose a design and style of boat to build on their own. (12 hours).


OLYMPUS DOUBLE INSHORE DIVE

October 10, 2021 – 8:00 AM – 3PM

2 scuba divers in the water with the light above them

Olympus Dive Center – 713 Shepard Street, Morehead City, NC 28557 – Call: 252.726.9432

Price: $145

Take a 2-tank trip with Olympus Dive Center. This is an Inshore trip with a short boat ride and a max depth of 65 feet. There are several excellent wrecks to explore. This is a great way to get your first NC ocean dive under your belt. Meet at the dock at 8 am. Tanks are not included.

Minimum Requirements for In-shore dive trip:

  • A minimum of 10 logged dives.
  • At least 1 logged boat ocean dive.
  • At least 2 dives in the last 12 months.
  • The minimum age for an In-Shore dive charter is 12 years of age.
  • Minimum safety equipment-recommendation is a surface marker buoy suitable for diving in the ocean. Neon yellow is best for our area.
  • In addition to the basic scuba equipment, our Off-Shore charters require that each diver dive with a computer. Please be aware of how the computer functions as well as how to set the computer for the appropriate mix. In addition, having the computer manual with you on the dive boat is always advised.
  • For divers who are close to but do not meet all of the requirements to dive on the In-Shore dive, charter arrangements for a guide can be made through the shop.  Please contact us for more information at info@olympusdiving.com.

ALIVE AT 5 OUTDOOR CONCERT- THE EMBERS

October 14, 2021 – 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM

The Embers musical group standing together

Jaycee Park- 807 Shepard Street, Morehead City, NC 28557 – Call: 252.808.0440

Bring your lawn chairs and blankets and join them for music and dancing. Beer, wine, and sodas are available for purchase at the event. Jaycee Docks are available for boats to dock for free throughout the concert on most Alive at Five days. RSVP Here


BEAUFORT FILM FESTIVAL

October 21, 2021 – October 31, 2021 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM

A festival crowd of people in the street

The Beaufort Picture Show is pleased to present the first annual Beaufort Film Festival! We’re looking to treat and inspire an otherwise under-served (festival-wise) and appreciative audience of movie-lovers all along the so-called Crystal Coast — it’s beautiful here at the beach, and we’ve got our boats and our books and our beers all lined up, but what we’re looking for now is “boffo box-office, bay-bee.” 

We sought submissions of all stripes: student films, experimental films, shorts, feature-length, you name it. And now we’re selecting the “coolest” flicks to screen at one of our (honestly) cool movie venues — we’ve got a retro-hip Drive-In (made out of shipping containers!) at Gallant’s Channel, plus we’ve got a more intimate indoor venue (right next door to a micro-brewery!) – Mill Whistle Brewing, and there’s all manner of “great lawns” about town where we can celebrate both the art of film and the practice of maintaining social distance (if need be).


CRYSTAL COAST HIGHLAND GAMES

October 23, 2021 – 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM

men in kilts walking on grass

Gallant’s Channel Event Space- 293 W. Beaufort Road Extension, Beaufort, NC 28516 – Call: 603.496.4546

Price: $12 in advance and $20 at the gate.

Don’t miss the Crystal Coast Highland Games! This will be a day of family fun for all ages, there will be demonstration Scottish dancing, Heavy Athletics, Scottish vendors, kids area, clan tents and of course the sound of bagpipes. Bring the family for a look at Scottish heritage. There is no refund rain or shine. Questions? Email: NCHighlandgames@gmail.com 

Calendar of Events

Looking for more fun along the Crystal Coast? Check out our 2021 Crystal Coast Calendar of Events page! 

man swinging a golf club on the crystal coast of nc

Love Golf? Plan a Crystal Coast Golf Vacation!

man swinging a golf club on the crystal coast of nc

Love Golf? Plan a Crystal Coast Golf Vacation!

If you love golf, I bet when you think of a golf vacation, places like California or Florida are probably the first places that come to mind. But, if you haven’t considered North Carolina’s Crystal Coast as a golf destination, put it on your list, now.

North Carolina has been a golf destination since the 1890s, and the legendary Pinehurst course has been dubbed the “Home of American Golf.” There are hundreds of golf courses in the state, but one of the most underrated places to play is on the Crystal Coast. The breathtaking coastal landscapes combined with the excellent beaches and mild weather truly make it a golfer’s paradise.

Golf vacations have become a popular way for tourists to unwind and experience new places. And, golf is much more than just a fun activity; it has excellent mental and physical health benefits. These benefits include reducing stress, maintaining mental alertness, and exercise. We’re sharing a few reasons why you should plan a golf vacation in North Carolina, specifically on the Crystal Coast.

Crystal Coast Golf Courses

man dressed in blue golfing on a beautiful, lush, green golf course with vivid green trees in the background.

Golf lovers, put the Crystal Coast on your radar. There are dozens of golf courses, both on the coast and within short driving distance, you can choose from, ranging from beginner to championship courses. We invite you to explore our scenic courses and experience everything our slice of paradise has to offer. So why not start planning a Crystal Coast golf vacation? It’s good for your health!

Crystal Coast Country Club

The Crystal Coast Country Club is an 18-hole championship golf course in Pine Knoll Shores. The beautiful rolling terrain here provides a picturesque background for your day at the course. You can play on the newly renovated championship golf course, fit with new tee boxes, fairways, bunkers, and more. And when you’re ready to play, you can book your tee time at Crystal Coast Country Club here.

Star Hill Golf Club

The fairways of Star Hill Golf Club have been a favorite spot to golf on the Crystal Coast for over 50 years. This challenging golf course in Cape Carteret features 27 holes on beautiful greens. All rates include a golf cart, and the course is open, rain or shine. Call (252) 393-8111 to reserve your tee time at Star Hill Golf Club, a favorite among locals. 

Brandywine Bay Golf Club

Golfers of any skill level will love playing a round of golf at Brandywine Bay Golf Club. There are even junior holes perfect for beginners or young children, so you could even make your golf vacation a family golf vacation! The newly renovated greens recently reopened so now you can play the entire course once again. If you’re interested, you can find the Brandywine Bay Golf Club rates here. 

Crystal Coast Vacation Rentals

crystal coast golf enthusiast getting ready to tee off

Now that you’ve read about a few of the Crystal Coast’s golf courses, it’s time to start planning your North Carolina vacation. Our vacation rental properties are the perfect setting for your getaway. Whether you’re visiting the Crystal Coast on your own, as a couple, or if you’re traveling with a bigger group, you’ll find something everyone can enjoy! Browse all of our properties here, and we’ll see you on the golf course!

Have you been golfing on the Crystal Coast? Let us know your favorite courses in the comments below!

a boat sitting off the coast of cape lookout with the cape lookout lighthouse in the background

Southern Outer Banks North Carolina Things to Do

a boat sitting off the coast of cape lookout with the cape lookout lighthouse in the background

Southern Outer Banks North Carolina Things to Do

Along the Southern Outer Banks of North Carolina is a stretch of 85 miles of breathtaking sandy shores. The crystalline blue water of this region is why it is often referred to as the Crystal Coast. There are several beach towns here that have distinct histories, natural areas, and activities to enjoy. No matter what beach town you’re looking to visit, we here at Bluewater Vacation Rentals offer a wide variety of vacation homes all along the Crystal Coast. 

Nature enthusiasts will fall in love with the area’s numerous state parks, kayaking, boating, biking, hiking, and beachcombing opportunities. Additionally, history buffs can spend their time on the Coast exploring museums and historic sites. There are so many things to do on the Southern Outer Banks of North Carolina, so read on for the best ways to explore this beautiful slice of paradise. 

Boat Rentals and Tours on the Crystal Coast

men on a crystal coast fishing charter boat with fishing poles cast into the water

One of our favorite ways to experience the Crystal Coast is on the water. Rent a boat for the day from Crystal Coast Boat Charters and Rentals and traverse the Intracoastal Waterway and Bogue Sound near Emerald Isle, NC. Take the boat out island hopping to the uninhabited barrier islands along the Crystal Coast or spend the day fishing. 

If you want to experience the best fishing spots with a local expert, take a fishing charter with  Capt. Stacy Fishing Center in Atlantic Beach, NC. From shark fishing to full-day fishing trips, Capt. Stacy has a trip for anyone to enjoy. For a customized and private excursion, book a tour with Crystal Coast Ecotours. Take a boat tour and see salt marshes, birds, ponies, and maritime forests along the way. The other tours include dolphin watching, fishing, wild horse watching, surf fishing, and more. Check out all of the exciting trips with Crystal Coast Ecotours here.

Bike Rentals and Tours on the Crystal Coast

an assortment of pastel colored bikes with baskets along the beaufort nc waterfront

The best way to explore the Crystal Coast on land is on a bike or beach cruiser. Beachside Bikes have locations in Atlantic Beach and Emerald Isle. Rent a bicycle for the day and cycle to the best sites and things to do on the Crystal Coast. Hwy 58 Bikes offers rentals for electric and cruiser bikes on the Crystal Coast. A bike rental is an exceptional way to experience and explore the breathtaking beauty of Emerald Isle. 

You can find a unique selection of biking tours at Hungry Town Tours in Beaufort. The Beaufort culinary bike tour includes three stops for appetizers, entrees, and dessert. The tour works with restaurants that offer fresh and local products. Peddle through history on the hidden Beaufort tour. See hundreds of historic homes while learning the significant history of this port town.

Spacious Vacation Rentals with Bluewater 

the interior of a beautiful bluewater vacation rental home with a relaxing color scheme and wood floors and stainless steel appliances in the kitchen

After a day exploring the southern Outer Banks of North Carolina and the things to do, you’ll be more than ready to unwind. Our vacation rental properties are the perfect setting to relax during your getaway. Take in a spectacular sunset from the porch of one of our Emerald Cottages, ideal for families. Browse our complete collection of vacation rentals here and call us at 866-231-5892 if you have any questions!

What’s Your Favorite Thing to Do?

What was your favorite thing to do on the Crystal Coast? Have you heard the Crystal Coast referred to as the Southern Outer Banks before? We’d love to know. Kick off the conversation in the comments below!