Good Times and Good Vibes at Carolina Beach
WINTER SUNLIT SOJOURN
You don’t have to wait until spring break to enjoy a beach getaway. Winter at Carolina Beach mingled with mild temperatures and off-season rates offer ways to get that sunshine feeling and joy by the water. Search for fully-intact shells at Freeman Park Recreation Area where a required permit allows you to have your own beach fire and end the day roasting s’mores. Take a guided Biological Wonderland Hike at Carolina Beach State Park learning about the maritime forest, ecosystem and biological wonders that call this area home. Nights are made cozy in the beach house rental with a steam pot to-go from Cape Fear Boil Company or hit the town and try the famous clam chowder at Michael’s Seafood Restaurant. After, get a taste of city life nearby in Wilmington with a concert at The Wilson Center.
SPRING IT ON
A Carolina Beach spring is the perfect time to witness carnivorous plants and the native Venus flytrap in bloom, take in waterside views or hike the trails throughout Carolina Beach State Park. Surf like a pro with lessons from Tony Silvagni Surf School or party on a pontoon or pedal boat with Wheel Fun Rentals or Carolina Beach Pontoon Rental. Nearby on the island, sample seafood and sing the blues at the 25th Annual Pleasure Island Seafood, Blues & Jazz Festival, April 13-14. Row your way into May attending the Carolina Beach Dragon Boat Regatta and Festival on May 4, cheering on colorful 45-foot watercrafts and staying the weekend for family-friendly festivities and outdoor concerts.
BEYOND THE BEACH
You will love these family trip ideas where kids play and explore and adults feel like kids again while on a Carolina Beach vacation. Cruise around town on a surrey bike rental accommodating up to eight riders or learn while you exercise on a self-guided bike tour through Wheel Fun Rentals stopping off at Island historic landmarks. “Get Squiggled” at Squigley’s Ice Cream & Treats that makes over 4,000 flavors blended in with a variety of toppings. Paddle out and explore marshland and waterways on a kayak, canoe or stand-up paddleboard with Paddle NC. Visit the nearby North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher for the Lorikeet Landing Exhibit where colorful, exotic birds fly through the air and land on your shoulder for feeding.
SAVOR LOCAL FLAVORS
From ales to fish tails, local flavors abound at Carolina Beach. Families love their first Britt’s fix of nothing but the best glazed donuts when the shop opens for the season in mid-April. Start the morning at Wake N Bake Donuts with a Wake N Bacon Donut or dining at Kate’s Pancake House with Very Berry or Sweet Potato Bliss pancakes. Take a beach break from the sun with pounds of shrimp and The Coconut Monk mixed drink at Ocean Grill and Tiki Bar. Foodies find their fix at inventive Salt Fish Restaurant and Tiki Bar where shrimp and rice are served in a pineapple accompanied by rummy yummy cocktails or at Surf House Oyster Bar & Surf Camp with local shrimp n’ grits or hanger steak. Keep it classic with a steak dinner and craft-your-own salad at the new Lake Park Steakhouse or beachin’ BBQ at Carolina Smokehouse where live music comes with a side of ocean views from the “topside” rooftop bar. Keep the party going with craft concoctions like a Flip Hop IPA or Boardwalk Brown Ale in the beer garden at Good Hops Brewing. Vibrant nightlife unlocks the freedom to be yourself at eclectic dive bars like The Fat Pelican, let the kids join in on the fun with beach volleyball and cornhole at The Lazy Pirate Island Sports Grill or dance the night away to live music at SeaWitch Cafe & Tiki Bar.
BOOK AN ISLAND RETREAT
Oceanfront hotels offer full-service amenities and easy access to the beach and boardwalk. Find a perfect beach house rental for your clan and enjoy the conveniences of home, like fully stocked kitchens and outdoor grills. No matter your budget or vacation style, a Carolina Beach getaway is easy to plan with a variety of accommodations from which to choose. Be sure to reserve early for the best selection as they book up quickly this time of year!