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Is Ocracoke Island Worth Visiting? (And How to Plan Your Trip)

There is no end to exciting and fun opportunities to explore on Ocracoke Island. This tranquil island is a gem whose pristine beaches and national parks give travelers unmatchable experiences, making their getaway memorable. Do you still doubt if Ocracoke Island is worth visiting?

You have so much to gain by visiting Ocracoke Island. This island offers an incredible way to escape the crowds that flock to the Outer Banks, North Carolina, whenever summer clocks in. You can experience real island life on this island, which also boasts one of the best beaches in America.

Have you been looking for a nice place to spend your dream vacation? Ocracoke brings your search to an end.

In this article, I will discuss why Ocracoke Island is worth visiting. You will love the relaxed atmosphere as you soak yourself in the soothing rays of the sun on Ocracoke’s pristine beaches.

Why Is Ocracoke Worth Visiting?

Although Ocracoke may feel far away, it is a perfect getaway package. Many people don’t know that it’s easy to get to the island and enjoy its generously stretched beach, restaurants, quality shops, and all the attractions that make it stand out.

Whether your vacation is for a day, two days, or a whole week, this gem has a magical way of making you forget your worries and get lost in the adventure of island fun.

Ocracoke Island has a lot of fun things to do, and here are some of them.

The Ferry Ride

This is the first thing you will enjoy on your visit to Ocracoke Island. You can only access the island by ferry unless you hire a private boat.

There are several routes to the island depending on your preference, but all of them are unique in their approach.

There is one free car ferry that goes to the island several times daily and another one that charges.

There is no more perfect time to relax and enjoy traveling by water than this. As the ferry cruises through the rolling waters, the beautiful view of the approaching island will please your eyes.

Explore Ocracoke Village

Ocracoke village might be the reason you will return to the island the next summer.

The charming village has lovely and warm locals and a lot to offer. You will love shopping around the quality shops and eating some skillfully prepared seafood in the village’s restaurant.

Although small, this nature-ruled village has lots of wildlife including raccoons, nutria, and deer, not to mention birds of all shapes and sizes.

There is also the David Williams House museum across the main parking area that you should visit. The museum has everything you need to know about Ocracokes’ history.

The best way to experience this village is by walking on foot or using a bicycle or a golf cart. The village’s streets are narrow, and it would be difficult to navigate by car.

Ocracoke Lighthouse

If you are already at the center of the village, you won’t have to look far to spot the Ocracoke Lighthouse, which dominates the town.

The lighthouse is one of the oldest buildings in North Carolina. It has remained the town’s greatest treasure even though visitors can’t go inside it. It serves as an excellent backdrop for taking photos.

Ocracoke Lifeguarded Beach

This is a uniquely beautiful beach and one of the best on the Outer Banks.

The beach is dominated by big surf, and you will love surfing, swimming, and beachcombing in this place during your summer afternoons.

This beach is famous for clean water, amazing dunes, and pristine white sand. Since it’s remotely located, you enjoy a quiet time at many observation decks along the beach.

Outer Banks National Scenic Byway

The Outer Banks National Scenic Byway is a beautiful stretch of pavement that happens to pass through Ocracoke, and it’s one of the best iconic attractions in North Carolina.

This Byway has properly marked signs indicating its entrance, unique elements, and designated points that could interest visitors. The 138 miles of byway crosses over Cedar island, Ocracoke island, and several other islands.

Along the way, the route crosses over 21 villages, all of which appeal to visitors on their way. Why not stop and explore Ocracoke for a day or two as you traverse the length of the National Scenic Byway?

Hammock Hills Nature Trails

Try the Hammock Hills Nature Trails if you’re longing to spend some time with nature and wildlife. It will usher you to some exciting terrain for a closer experience, specifically with plants.

The 0.75-mile trail starts right from the village center, and you can enjoy a beautiful view of the island as you listen to the serenading birds in the woods. Bug repellent is recommended.

Enjoy Wind Surfing and Kayaking

Make your days at Ocracoke memorable by trying windsurfing on the sound.

You will need the right gear and equipment for windsurfing, and if you have no experience, watersport outfitters are on standby to help you.

The place is also safe for kayaking and other water sports activities that will give you a thrilling experience. You can rent most of the watersports equipment on the beach at a fair price.

Ocracoke Island Golf Carts

You won’t get the full taste of life on Ocracoke Island if you don’t try the Island’s Golf carts. You will enjoy touring around in the open-aired four or six-seater electric golf carts.

The carts are easily and cheaply rented out, and you will navigate the island in them without any safety issues. Golf carts are the best way to tour the island and shop for some supplies if you have an extended vacation.

Deepwater Theater

Enjoy a night out in Ocracoke at the Deepwater Theater. If you have ever heard of a famous band known as Molasses Creek, this is where you will find it.

The theater is known for outstanding performances and thrilling concerts that will make your night on the island memorable. You will love everything from the songs to the stories and the overall entertainment.

How to Plan a Trip to Ocracoke Island

Proper planning is essential, whether you visit the Island for a day or a week. Here are some tips that will help you plan your trip.

Find a Perfect Accommodation

If your trip lasts for more than a day, you need to choose where you will stay. The first thing to do when choosing accommodation is to consider your budget.

Also, pick accommodation that will meet your needs. Remember to consider factors like safety and proximity to the beaches of Ocracoke.

Make a Bucket List of Activities

Ocracoke Island has a lot of things to do; if you don’t identify what you want in advance, you might waste time trying to figure out what to do once you’re there.

A list of activities you want to engage in will help you plan your movement and time. Once on the island, start with things that are far from town and finish with the ones that are within the town.

You can also talk to the locals and inquire about the places you want to visit.

Pack The Essentials

Packing for your vacation also requires some planning. When packing, consider activities you will participate in and the weather.

Ensure you pack comfortable shoes since you will end up doing a lot of walking.

Your packing list should include personal effects like a phone, identity card, and other essentials like sunglasses, and sunscreen, among others.

Remember that Ocracoke Island is a remote location, accessible only by ferry, so you might not be able to access some amenities you’re used to at home. Pack anything you think you can’t do without.

Ocracoke Island is a beautiful place and you should not hesitate to visit in the coming summer season. You will enjoy seeing the Ocracoke Lighthouse, surfing, kayaking, and exploring the Ocracoke village. I hope you will plan to visit the island and make the most of your time there.