Getting There: A majority of travelers fly into Jacksonville, NC (OAJ), the nearest airport. It’s a 3-hour drive from Raleigh-Durham International Airport. You will arrive in Morehead City on Highway 70. Take the Atlantic Beach Bridge exit off of Highway 70 and go over the bridge into Atlantic Beach. If accessed by land, Atlantic Beach is located on Bogue Banks, part of North Carolina’s southern Outer Banks barrier islands. It is accessible using U.S. Route 70.
Transportation: The island of Bogue Banks is only 26 miles from one end to the other. Due to the slower speed limit, it may take about 45 minutes to travel the entire length, but there are some brilliant views of the ocean and the Sound along the way. Mile marker signposts are placed along Highway 58 every half-mile that are used for giving directions. There is no public transportation on the island, but you can grab a ride with one of several reliable taxi companies. You’re best bet is to rent a car so you can come and go at your own pace and explore all the city beaches of the Crystal Coast and outlying areas. For added security and convenience, book your rental car ahead of time so it is ready and waiting for you at the airport, which also has dependable car-rental agencies. Make sure your agency tracks your flight for any delays and does not release your vehicle to someone else!
Beach & Air Tours: By land or by sea, there are abundantly diverse adventures to partake in on Atlantic Beach and the Crystal Coast. For some exciting expeditions and activities, try Cape Lookout Beach, Crystal Coast Air Tours by Segrave Aviation, Crystal Coast Lady Cruises, Ghost Walk of Beaufort, N.C. Port Tours, Shackleford Wild Horse & Shelling Safari and Tour Beaufort.
Retail Therapy: There are plenty of shopping options in Atlantic Beach and outside of the area that include everything from casual to high end and outlet stores to specialty boutiques. For a few unique options, take a walk along Beaufort's thriving waterfront and check out the quaint waterfront shops, which are a true delight for shoppers. Other highlights include Atlantic Beach: Dragonfly Import Co., Island Traders and The Beach Boutique. Wings is the largest beach shop on the island, with beach apparel, souvenirs and accessories. Kite’s Unlimited also sponsors a kite-flying group in the area on weekends. For rods, reels and bait, check out Freeman's Discount Bait and Tackle.
Nightlife: Atlantic Beach and the Crystal Coast’s nightlife is as varied as the personalities of the Coast’s city beaches, whether you want to sit back and relax with a martini or dance the night away. Some of the best spots to hit when the sun sets and the nightlife temperatures start flaring up are in Atlantic Beach, Beaufort and Morehead City. In Atlantic Beach, there’s the Beach Tavern, Cutty Shark Lounge—Clamdigger Inn, Planet Red, Channel Marker and Golden Margaritas Night Club. Beaufort boasts the Back Street Pub, Crystal Coast Lady Cruises, Hannah's Haus and The Dock House, while Morehead City’s hot spots include the Arendell Room, Cabana Club Rum Bar & Disco and Jack's Waterfront Bar.
Local Flavor: There is a bounty of options for all tastes in North Carolina’s Atlantic Beach, including 4 Corner's, Amos Mosquito's, Channel Marker, China King, Crab's Claw, El Zarape of Atlantic Beach, Island Grille, McCurdy's Restaurant & Deck, New York Deli, the Shark Shack, Skippers Cove, Surfari, The Monkey Bar & Grill, Watermark Restaurant and the White Swan. For the best pizza, it’s a toss up among Bella Pizza & Subs, Crispino's Pizza, Michaelangelo's Pizza and Roma Pizza. Beyond its thriving waterfront, the Crystal Coast’s Beaufort also boasts some of the best dining in the area, with an incredible number of restaurants of all varieties of international cuisine. Check out the city website for numerous establishments. You can also find some great eateries in Pine Knoll Shores, Salter Path and Morehead City, as well. There are also some specialty stores in Atlantic Beach, such as ABC Store-Atlantic Beach, Churchill's Cigars Tobacco and Gifts and Santiago's Fine Wine & Cigars. Plus, for that undeniable sweet tooth, some highlighted favorites include AB Ice Cream & Candy Shoppe, Alex & Brett Inc., BrrrBerry—The Frozen Yogurt, Sea Side Cheese Cake Dessert Shoppe and Twisted Spoon frozen yogurt bar & cupcakery. To stock up on your own incredible fresh seafood for some outdoor grilling, try Atlantic Beach Seafood Market, Capt. Jim's Seafood Market and Island Cove Seafood & Willis Seafood Market.
Outdoor Recreation: There is wide variety of water sports and expeditions to partake in, as well as available bike rentals, boat rentals and charters, dive shops and excursions, ferry services, fishing piers and expeditions, and boat-slip rentals at Anchorage Marina Inc. Other marinas include 70 West Marina, Airport Marina, Atlantic Beach Causeway Marina, Coral Bay Marina, Dockside Marina, Portside Marina, Radio Island and Sea Water Marina. Golfers will enjoy teeing up at the variety of courses, including Brandywine Bay Golf and Country Club, Carolina Pines Golf and Country Club, Country Club of Crystal Coast, Harbour Star Hill Golf and The Emerald Golf Club. The kids will enjoy swinging of their own, too, at Lighthouse Golf and Golfin’ Dolphin miniature golf courses, Families will also enjoy and playing around at Mac Daddy’s Entertainment Center. You can also grab a saddle and go for a pleasant stroll or a galloping ride with Cedar Island Stables, Eterna Riverview and Outer Banks Riding Stables.
Arts, Parks & Museums: Atlantic Beach and the Crystal Coast is also proud to showcase and display the work of local and international artists. To view some brilliant art, visit Arts & Things Gallery, Blu Sail Gallery, Carolina Artist Studio Gallery, Handscapes Gallery and Tierra Fina. There are also variety of museums, displays, attractions, eco-friendly centers and maritime exhibits that bring joy to everyone’s faces. Among the many, a few of the more popular include Beaufort Historic Museum, Cape Lookout National Seashore, Core Sound Decoy Carvers Guild, Core Sound Waterfowl Museum, Foundation for Shackleford Horses, Ft. Macon State Park, NC Maritime Museum, North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores, Rachel Carson Reserve and The History Place in Morehead City.
Begin Your Best Vacations Experience Here!