150 Best Things To Do In The Outer Banks With Kids

Are you looking for the best things to do in the Outer Banks with kids? We’ve got you covered!

UPDATE: Unfortunately, a lot of attractions and shops in the Outer Banks have closed due to the coronavirus. We have done our best to update the article with current closures.

150 Best Things To Do In Outer Banks With Kids

Go to a beach along the Cape Hatteras National Seashore

The Cape Hatteras National Seashore was established in 1953 and is seriously stunning. The seashore stretches more than 70 miles from Ocracoke Island to Bodie Island. This area is beautiful and is a must-see when in the Outer Banks. 

Eat doughnuts from Duck Donuts

Duck Donuts was founded in Duck, North Carolina and is a staple, not only in the Outer Banks but around the nation. They are famous for donuts like the Bacon In The Sun, Beach Ball, Blueberry Lemonade, and others. They also have bagel breakfast sandwiches, coffee, and shakes. 

Visit The Cape Hatteras Beach Lighthouse

The Cape Hatteras Lighthouse on Hatteras Island is the tallest brick lighthouse in America and stands almost 200 feet high. The red base and the black and white swirling stripes are iconic fixtures in the Outer Banks. 

Currently, the lighthouse is undergoing a restoration process that prohibits visitors from walking up the stairs to the top. The restoration is said to be continuing through 2022. In the future, visitors will be able to climb to the top of the lighthouse once again.

See the Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station Historic Site

There are several life-saving stations in the Outer Banks, this one is in the dreamy town of Rodanthe on the east side of Highway 12. 

Go to a beach in the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge

The Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge is located on the north part of Hatteras Island in the Outer Banks. The sanctuary is about ten miles south of Nags Head and is truly a dream destination. You are going to want to see the beach for yourself!

Visit Roanoke Island (guide to Roanoke Island)

Roanoke Island is the innermost island in the Outer Banks. Home to the towns of Manteo and Wanchese, this island is home to the Lost Colony. A group of settlers suddenly disappeared from the island and the mystery of what happened to them extends to this day. 

Visit The Bodie Island Lighthouse

When you’re looking for stuff to do in the Outer Banks, you will want to check out Bodie Island Lighthouse. It stands at 156 feet in the air and is on the Roanoke Sound side of the island. 

Buy an Apple Ugly from Apple Blossom Bakery & Cafe

One of the best things to do in the Outer Banks with kids is to visit the Apple Blossom Bakery and Cafe. The cafe is popular with both locals and visitors and is famous for their Apple Uglies. These are pastries that are huge and full of goodness. They may be big, bulky, and ugly, but they are most certainly delicious!  Full of cinnamon, sugar, and apples, Apple Uglies are the quintessential OBX breakfast.

See the Fort Raleigh National Historic Site

Fort Raleigh National Historic Site is the location of the lost colony of Roanoke. The colony was the first English establishment in present-day America. You can learn all about the colony and the area at this Outer Banks attraction. 

Walk out on the Rodanthe Pier

In the 1970s and 1980s, there were three fishing piers built on Hatteras Island. Rodanthe Pier was one of them. Officially named the Hatteras Island Pier, it’s a great place to watch the sunrise, go fishing, or take a walk. 

Grab a delicious Fajita Quesadilla from Corolla Cantina

When it comes to restaurants in the Outer Banks, the Corolla Cantina is one of the best! It is a casual and laidback restaurant with Baja-style cuisine. You can enjoy your food outside on their chill patio to enjoy the warm OBC weather!

Fish on the Avon Fishing Pier

If you have always wanted to go fishing in North Carolina, now is your chance! You can find Spot, Pompano, Mackerel, and more off of this Outer Banks pier.

Visit the Oregon Inlet fishing village

This marina is known for being the place to be if you are interested in chartering a fishing boat. If you want to get a glimpse of this site before you go, check out their live webcam!

Windsurf at Canadian Hole

Water activities in Outer Banks are really popular. If you want to try your hand at windsurfing, one of the best places to do that is at the Canadian Hole along the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

Rent a jet ski or wave runner

You can many different companies to rent jet skis from in the Outer Banks. From Rodanthe to Salvo and Avon and Nags Head, no matter what part of the OBX you are visiting, there’s a jet ski rental place near you. 

Visit the Graveyard of The Atlantic Museum

The area off of the Outer Banks is known as the Graveyard of The Atlantic as many ships met their demise in the waters due to underwater sand shoals and shallow waters. You can learn all about the unusually high number of shipwrecks at this museum. If it isn’t on your bucket list yet, it should be, as it is one of the most unusual things to do in the Outer Banks with kids.!

Take a stroll through the Historic Corolla Park

The Historic Corolla Park is a really beautiful area and is one of the best places to watch the sunset in the Outer Banks, North Carolina. The grounds are well maintained and you can enjoy the natural beauty of the coat in the park. 

Take the ferry to Ocracoke Island (my guide to taking the Hatteras to Ocracoke ferry)

Ocracoke Island is a beautiful part of North Carolina that is not connected to other islands or the mainland via a highway. The most popular way to get to the island is by taking a ferry from Hatteras Island. 

It’s always important to find ways to support local businesses when you travel. At the Pea Island Art Gallery, you can support locals and see amazing art at the same time.

Search for wild horses in the Currituck National Wildlife Refuge

The Currituck National Wildlife Refuge is a nature preserve that was established in 1984 with the purpose of protecting the coastal ecosystem. What makes this refuge so popular is its wild horses!

Visit the Pea Island Life Saving Station

The Pea Island Life Saving Station is another one of the stations on the Outer Banks. It was the first station in the country to have an all-black crew and the first station to have a black man as the commanding officer. 

Best Things To Do In the Outer Banks With Kids Continued

Lay on the beach at the Salvo Day Use Area

Spending the day on the beach at The Salvo Day Use Area is one of the best things to do in the Outer Banks with kids. The day-use area has picnic tables and is a great place to spend the day in the sun!

See the Currituck Lighthouse

The Currituck Lighthouse is a beautiful red brick lighthouse in the town of Corolla. Standing at 162 feet tall, this lighthouse’s light can be seen for eighteen natural miles!

Walk the trails at the Sandy Run Park

Sandy Run Park is located in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina and it has 16 acres of land that includes a range of wildlife inhabitants and creekside trails. A visit to the park is a great way to see a unique part of the Outer Banks and to stay healthy on your travels.

Enjoy the shallow waters at the Haulover Day Use Area

Hanging out at the Haulover Day Use Area is one of the best things to do in the Outer Banks with kids. There is shallow water and picnic tables, making for a great family-friendly place to spend your time. 

Visit the Historic Whalehead Club

The Whalehead is a large and historic home that faces the Currituck Sound. The home sits on 39 acres of beautiful coastal land and is within walking distance from the Currituck Lighthouse. 

Fish off of the Avalon Pier

You have your selection piers in the Outer Banks and it’s great to know that there is always one fairly close no matter where you are on the OBX. The Avalon Pier is located in Kill Devil Hills.

Watch the kite surfers at Kite Point

Kite Point is an attraction in Buxton, North Carolina that is popular with kiteboarders. This is a great place to go to watch the kite borderers and enjoy time spent in nature. 

Have lunch at the famous Howards Pub

Howards Pub is one of the best restaurants in the Outer Banks! They have screened-in porch seating and delicious food. It’s a must-add to anyone’s OBX bucket list. 

Go kayaking in the Kitty Hawk Woods Coastal Reserve

The Kitty Hawk Woods Coastal Reserve is a maritime forest with marshes and swamplands as well. It’s on the border with the Currituck Sound and is great for outdoor explorers. There are options for hiking, birding, hunting, and fishing in the reserve. 

Rent a pontoon for the day

Renting a pontoon in Nags Head is one of the most fun things to do in the Outer Banks. Fishing Unlimited Outer Banks Boat Rentals offers 23ft and 26ft pontoons. They also have 17-foot powerboats for rent as well which can be rented for either two hours, half-day, or full-day. 

Visit Little Colington Island

Roanoke Island wasn’t the only place where the English tried to settle the Outer Banks. They also tried to settle Colington Island. Today the island is mostly residential but can be seen by kayak or boat. 

Go on a Ghost Crab Quest

The Ghost Crab Quest is an ecotourism company that showcases the beauty of the barrier agile while highlighting their fragility. They also introduce guests to bird watching, pirate history, and more. 

See the beautiful Jennette’s Pier

Jennette’s Pier is the most beautiful pier in the Outer Banks. If you are looking for a beach to lay out in the sun on, laying by Jennette’s Pier is amazing. The beach is wide and it is also handicap accessible. 

Walk boardwalks of the Hatteras Village Park

Hatteras Village Park is a stunning natural reserve on Hatteras Island. The reserve has maritime forests and salt marshes. For those looking to stay active and enjoy nature while traveling, a visit to Hatteras Village Park is one of the best things to do in the Outer Banks with kids.

Get candy from The Laughing Lollipop

The Laughing Lollipop is one of the coolest candy shops in the Outer Banks. You can find unique and locally made products as well as your classic favorites. 

Go to the Wright Brothers National Memorial

The Wright Brothers National Monument in Kill Devil Hills commemorates the first successful flight completed by the Wright brothers. It was established in 1927 to celebrate the first successful flight of the brothers’ power-driven, heavier-than-air machine. 

Walk around the town of Manteo

Taking a trip to Manteo is one of the best things to do in the Outer Banks with kids. The town is beautiful and has many shops, boutiques, and restaurants to check out as you walk around town.

Visit the Ocracoke Island Lighthouse

The Ocracoke Island Lighthouse is the oldest lighthouse in North Carolina. It stands at 75 feet tall, making it one of the smaller lighthouses in the state. You can’t currently climb the stairs of the lighthouse, but it’s still one of the best things to do on Ocracoke Island. 

Walk up the gigantic sand dunes in Jockey’s Ridge State Park

This Atlantic coast state park is home to the biggest sand dune on the East Coast.  It covers 427 acres and is one of the most significant geological features on the coast. It’s a great place to hike, fly a kite, and enjoy the panoramic views from the top of the dunes. 

Fish off of the Nags Head Fishing Pier

This Outer Banks fishing pier is less than a twenty-minute drive from the Bodie Island Lighthouse. If you are visiting Nags Head, it’s worth a visit. 

Get brave at the First Flight Adventure Park

The First Flight Adventure Park is home to different aerial obstacle courses of varying difficulties. They also have zip lines and other ways to itch the urge for adventure. For family travelers, this is one of the best things to do in the Outer Banks with kids!

Best Things To Do In The Outer Banks With Kids Continued

Rent a paddle boat in Corolla

For those traveling with kids, getting out on the water can be difficult. One way you can do this is by renting a paddleboat. These boats from Corolla Water Sports can fit up to four people and are great for kids as the water is calm.

Visit the Nags Head Woods

Nags Head Woods is a beautiful natural feature in Nags Head that preserves the diversity of animal and plant life on the island. You can find towering trees, more than a hundred bird species, wetlands, and more in the area. There are not a lot of hiking trails along the Outer Banks that aren’t on the sandy coast. Nags Head Woods feel like you are on mainland NC, but when the trees open up you are greeted with sound views. 

See the Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse

The Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse doesn’t look like your typical lighthouse. It was actually created to guide boats through the marshes and today is a free museum that you can explore during your visit. 

Take a class from the Kitty Hawk Kites Hang Gliding School

If you have ever been to the Outer Banks before, then you have seen people hang gliding. It’s common due to the high dunes and winds from the ocean making it a great place to participate in the sport. You can take lessons and learn for yourself how to hang glide at the Kitty Hawk Hang Gliding School.

Try stand up paddle boarding in the ocean

SUPing can be difficult. Have you ever tried it in the ocean? You can see people braving the waves and paddleboarding in the Outer Banks. If you want to try it for yourself, there are many rental shops up and down the banks where you can rent you. If you aren’t ready to head out into the ocean, you can try SUPing in one of the sounds.

At this Nags Head art gallery, you can see Native American, ocean, and North Carolina-themed artwork. After you browse the gallery, head just down the street to grab a cup from Morning View Coffee House.

Play space themed putt putt at Galaxy Golf

Galaxy Golf is a 36-hole mini-golf course that is outdoors in Nags Head. If you’re traveling with kids, they will love this outer space theme miniature golf course.

Visit the Nags Head Raceway

This is another one of the OBX attractions to add to your Outer Banks bucket list. The raceway is a super fun way to spend your time on the barrier islands. 

Rent a jeep for beach driving in Corolla

Renting a Jeep is a great way to see the most remote portions of the Outer Banks. Grab your rental in Corolla and set off on an adventure! Feeling the wind blow in your hair as you drive by crashing waves and wild horses is one of the coolest things to do in the Outer Banks with kids.

Take a picture in front of the Oregon Inlet Life Saving Station

This is one of the most beautiful life-saving stations in the OBX. Also called the Pea Island Life Saving Station, its unique architecture and the ocean scenery surrounding it make for an unbelievably beautiful picture.

Have a waterside picnic at the Harvey Soundside Park

This Outer Banks park is a lovely place to sit by the water and enjoy the natural beauty of the OBX.

Fish off of the Outer Banks Fishing Pier

The Outer Banks fishing pier is in Nags Head, North Carolina on Old Oregon Inlet Road. There are picnic tables on the pier where you can sit and have lunch while you watch the waves roll in and the fishermen fish.

Seagreen Gallery is an eclectic art gallery full of everything beach-related. Paintings, wind chimes, furniture, home decor, and more are all available. Be sure to check out this cute ship while in the OBX.

Walk along the breathtaking Coquina Beach

Coquina Beach is one of the most stunning beaches in the Outer Banks. It’s located in Dare County, not far from the Wright Brothers Memorial.

Visit the dramatic sand dunes at the Run Hill State Natural Area

Not as tall nor as impressive as the dunes at Jockeys Ridge State Park, the dunes at Run Hill State Natural Area are still, undeniably, beautiful. They are located in Kill Devil Hills and are a beautiful place to be if you are looking to spend some time out in nature. 

Eat scrumptious loaded nachos at the pier & ocean front Fishheads

This Outer Banks restaurant is an absolute must-visit location in NC. You will love looking out over the water as chow down on some delicious loaded nachos, a drink in hand, listening to live music.

Laze around on Corolla Beach

Nothing compares to the wide sandy beaches and blue waters at Corolla Beach. If you’re lucky, you may see a wild mustang wandering down the beach. 

Stop by the Pony Pen to take a closer look at the wild horses

The Pony Pen on Ocracoke Island is home to Banker Ponies. Once wild, the ponies have since been penned. You can see the ponies for yourself, for free. This is one of the best free things to do in the Outer Banks with kids.

Indulge on a waffle cone at The Chill Spot

If you find yourself wandering around Corolla on a hot summer’s day, be sure to check out The Chill Spot. Of course, if you are visiting in the winter or if you want to swing by in the morning, they have coffee as well. 

Find famous movie filming locations from Message In A Bottle & Nights in Rodanthe

More than 2,000 movies have been filmed in North Carolina, including Dirty Dancing, The Hunger Games,  and Weekend at Bernie’s. Brainstorm and Nights in Rodanthe were both filmed in the Outer Banks. Nights in Rodanthe was filmed in the northernmost inhabited areas of Hatteras Island, and some in North Topsail Beach. (a mainland NC beach) 

Ride a horse on the beach

Riding a horse on the beach is one of the most unique things to do in the Outer Banks with kids. You have several companies to choose from, including Equine Adventures in Frisco, OBX Horseback in Nags Head, and Lighthouse Horse Rides in Buxton.

Visit one of the country’s top rated beaches

Ocracoke Beach continues to be ranked highly as one of the best beaches in the United States. On Beach’s 10 Best Beaches in the USA list, Ocracoke Lifeguard Beach has been ranked as the 3rd best beach in the country, while the Old Lifeguard Beach on Hatter Island was ranked 5th.

Visit the Hatteras Island Ocean Center

The Ocean Center in Hatteras offers many opportunities for visitors. Kayak tours, a marsh walk, ice cream, and smoothies, just to name a few. It’s one of the best places to visit on Hatteras Island.

Walk around the Frisco Native American Museum

This museum in Frisco is a non-profit site that is dedicated to preserving Native American culture, art, and artifacts. The museum holds craft days for children and has various volunteer opportunities as well.

Watch the sunset over dinner at Good Winds Restaurant

The Good Winds Restaurants in Rodanthe has delicious fish-caught local seafood on their menu, as well as a selection of wines. They are a casual, waterfront dining restaurant that is great for dinner with a sunset view.

Take the Buxton Woods Trail

Buxton Woods Trail is a 0.8-mile loop trail that is lightly trafficked. You can see beautiful wildflowers and marshlands as you walk through this portion of the Outer Banks. The trail is dog friendly and it’s good for all skill levels. 

Get yourself a treat from the Gingerbread House Bakery

The Gingerbread House Bakery is located in Frisco, North Carolina. You can find everything from bread and pastries, to pizza and breakfast ideas at this Outer Banks bakery. 

Taste delicious fresh seafood at The Mad Crabber

If you are looking for the best fried seafood in the Outer Banks, you’re going to want to head to the Mad Crabber. The restaurant is in Avon and they have proudly been serving seafood for more than twenty-five years. 

Best Things To Do In The Outer Banks With Kids Continued

Take a chartered fishing boat

There are some amazing fishing conditions in the Outer Banks. You can charter a fishing boat in several places up and down the banks. Chartering a fishing boat can cost anywhere from $500 to $2000, depending on where you are and how long you stay out on the water.

Try your hand at parasailing

Parasailing is one of the most adventurous activities to do in the Outer Banks with kids. there are several companies that offer parasailing. You can parasail in either Duck or Manteo if you go through Kitty Hawk Kites.

Rent a bike to ride around your favorite Outer Banks town

You can find bike rental places in Avon, Salvo, and other Outer Banks towns. 

Order a pizza from Angelo’s Pizza Arcade

If you are looking for great pizza restaurants in the Outer Banks, look no further than Angelo’s. They have pool tables, arcade games, and amazing American fare. 

Drive your own 4X4 vehicle onto one of the vehicle friendly beaches

If you have your own 4×4 vehicle, you can get a permit to go off-roading on some of the Outer Banks beaches. 

This little shop in Hatteras is busting with personality. Bright colors and interesting merchandise are standard for the Blue Pelican. If you want o find something unique and exciting while in the OBX, you are going to want to go to the Blue Pelican.

Take a sunset cruise

You have a few options when choosing a sunset cruise in the Outer Banks. One option is to hop on the Miss Hatteras boat for a sunset cruise through the Pamlico Sound to watch dolphins playing in the water from evening tonight. 

Rent a golf cart to drive around your favorite Outer Banks town

You find places to rent a golf cart in the Outer Banks from Corolla to Ocracoke. Island Cruisers Inc in Salvo and OBX Golf Carts in Kill Devil Hills are both reputable options. 

Grab an Italian Ice from Cups And Cones

This mouth-watering coffee and ice cream spot in the OBX is simply amazing. You can find smoothing, shakes, hand-dipped cones, a full coffee menu, and an espresso bar at Cups and Cones. 

Go scuba diving off the coast of the Outer Banks

Outer Banks Diving offers dicing opportunities off of the coast. If you want to see the Graveyard of the Atlantic for yourself, a visit to Outer Banks Diving is the way to go.

Have fun at Frisco Mini-Golf and Go-Karts

This family fun center is the place to be if you are looking for things to do in the Outer Banks with kids at night. After a day exploring the barrier islands and spending time on the beach, head to Frisco Mini Gold & Go Karts for even more fun! 

Embrace your inner child at Hatteras Toy Store & Candy Island

Are you even on an American vacation is you didn’t try out the local candy store? This shop has everything you and your kids could ever want from a candy and toy shop.

Stop at Plaza Azteca for delicious Mexican food

Plaza Azteca has a friendly and warm environment that is made even better by the large menu of Mexican cuisine favorites. You can even get guacamole made by your tableside. 

Enjoy a healthy smoothie from Island Smoothie

Island Smoothie is located in Corolla and is a family-owned business in the Outer Banks. If you are looking for ways to stay healthy while you travel, a trip to Island Smoothie may be just what you need. 

Buy some Outer Banks made Mango-Pineapple Habenero Salsa from Hattibuilt

Hattiebuilt is a shop in Avon, North Carolina. They have everything you could be looking for. From salsas and pickles to handmade bags and shirts. You can find just about anything at Hattiebuilt.

Taste any and every flavor of salt water taffy from Forbes Candy & Gift Shop

In Nags Head, the Forbes Candy & Gift Shop offers their guests all kinds of cool merchandise. You can find chocolate candies and fudge made in-store as well as home decor and other souvenirs from your time spent in the Outer Banks.

Stop by Josephine’s Sicilian Kitchen for yummy Italian cuisine

This Italian restaurant in the Outer Banks has classic Italian fare. From veal and meatballs to cannoli and tiramisu, they have it all. The restaurant is located in Kitty Hawk, next to Barefoot Bernie’s Tropical Grill & Bar.

Enjoy the wildlife in the Nature Conservancy

The nature conservancy is located in Kill Devil Hills in the Nags Head Woods. The conservancy is protected so that it can continue to preserve the wildlife for years to come. This is a great place to paddleboard, hike, or have a picnic. 

Search for black bears, turtles, and alligators in the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge

Black bears near the coast? Yup. Located in Manns Harbor, the refuge is more than 154,000 acres of wetland habitats. You can find everything from red wolves and alligators to crabs and wood ducks. You can enjoy the nature trails, kayaking routes, and observation platforms during your visit. 

Walk around the beautiful grounds of the Elizabethan Garden

The Elizabethan Gardens are on the site of the Lost Colony. The gardens are stunning and display many species of plants and antiques along their brick pathways. 

Enjoy marine life at the North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island

The North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island is one of the best things to do in the Outer Banks with kids. The aquarium is fun and vibrant, making a great addition to anyone’s OBX bucket list. If you are looking for things to do on Roanoke Island, you won’t want to miss the aquarium!

Spend a night in nature at one of the Outer Banks’ campgrounds

There are amazing campsites in the Outer Banks for you to choose from if your accommodation of choice is a campsite or if you are just being budget conscious during your travels to the Outer Banks. Some of the best include Ocracoke Island Campground, Frisco Campground, and Oregon Inlet Campground. 

Experience what life was like in the 19th century at Island Farm

Island Farm is a living museum set on a 19th-century farm. They have interpreters role-playing actions from the time period in period-attire, as well as animals and hands-on activities.

Learn a thing or two at The Monument To A Century of Flight

The Monument To A Century of Flight is located in Kitty Hawk and is dedicated to the enduring legacy of the history of flight. You can learn about the milestones and accomplishments in flight history and the role that the state of North Carolina has played in the process.

Visit the National Wildlife Refuges Gateway Visitors Center

This national refuge is in Manteo, North Carolina on Roanoke Island. It encompasses more than 152,000 acres of wetland habitats and is home to animals like black bears, ducks, cranes, alligators, and other coastal wildlife. 

Drive the length of the Outer Banks Scenic Byway

Taking a road trip along the Outer Banks Scenic Byway is one of the best road trips in the U.S. Driving from the northernmost part of the OBX, to the southernmost part, is one of the most beautiful drives in the country. 

Learn about the loggers and moonshiners of Roanoke at the Buffalo City Exhibit

Buffalo City Exhibit is the place to be if you want to learn about the interesting past of the Outer Banks barrier islands. 

Best Things To Do In The Outer Banks With Kids Continued

Follow the historical monuments of the Civil War Trail

The Dare County Civil War Heritage Trail goes for fifteen miles and has exhibits that depict what military operations were like during the Civil War on the Hatteras Inlet. 

Go for a beer tasting at the Lost Colony Brewery and Cafe

This is one of the best restaurants in the Outer Banks! It’s in the town of Manteo and it has been around since 1995. You can enjoy beer tasting and fried seafood at this OBX cafe.

Visit the Dare County Airport Museum

This aviation museum is located west of the Dare County Airports west terminal. You can find various models of aircraft and information about them as well. We all know a traveler that would find this to be right up their alley. 

Walk the Duck Soundside Boardwalk

Duck, North Carolina has a great boardwalk that goes over coastal wetlands in the Outer Banks. You are sure to see ducks, cranes, and other wildlife during your visit. 

See the Lost Colony Play

The Lost Colony play has been shown to millions of people since it began. The show tells the story of the English men, women, and children who disappeared in the Outer Banks. The Lost Colony play includes epic battles, Native American dances, and more!

Visit Duck Town Park

Duck Town Park has many trails through the willow swamp and maritime forests. It has green space, accessible to the Duck boardwalk, and outstanding views of the sound. 

Explore the North Carolina Maritime Museum

The North Carolina Maritime Museum unveils new exhibits annually so you always have something new to experience and learn about each time you visit the Outer Banks.

Go shopping at the Nags Head Outlets

If you love shopping while you are traveling, you will want to check out the Nags Head Outlets in the Outer Banks. 

Attend the annual Lost Colony Wine & Culinary Festival

This Outer Banks festival happens every year in April. You will be blown away by the delicious island foods and wines. And of course, the breathtaking coastal views you will have as well. 

Go crabbing or shrimping on a Croatan Charter Boat

Have you ever been shrimping? You can go shrimping with Croatan Charters. There are tons of charters that will take you deep sea fishing, but finding a boat to take you out looking for crab and shrimp is rare. 

Take a Harbor Star Dolphin Tour

Dolphin tours with Harbor Star are simply amazing. You can watch playful dolphins as they make their way through their natural habitat. The boats have wide canopies ensuring you stay dry if it starts to rain and the tours are surprisingly affordable. This is one of the best budget-friendly things to do in the Outer Banks with kids!

Get your picture taken at Miss Kitty’s Old Time Photos & Gifts

Create memories at Miss Kitty’s Old Time Photos and Gifts. Take old-timey photos and have them printed as a souvenir of your time spent in the OBX.

Have fun and try to escape from OB-Xscape Rooms

If you are dealing with bad weather during your visit, take things indoors with OBXscape Rooms in Southern Shores.

Try a donut on a stick at Donutz On-A-Stick Ice Cream

This establishment is a cheery and friendly place where you can get espresso, ice cream, and of course, donuts on a stick.

Get your hair wrapped at Life On A Sandbar

Life On A Sandbar is a shop in Nags Head where you can get your hair braided or wrapped, henna tattoos, and they offer other activities as well. If you are traveling with kids, it may be worth a stop!

Be a dare devil with Skydive OBX

Of all the places to skydive, skydiving over the Outer Banks has to be one of the most beautiful destinations to skydive!

Take an Outer Banks boat tour with Vineyard Voyage

If you have ever dreamed of touring the Outer Banks by boat, you are going to want to check out Vineyard Voyage boat tours. 

Go bowling at OBX Bowling Center

If you are dealing with rainy or intense weather during your visit to North Carolina, you can take the indoors to the OBX Bowling Center in Nags Head. 

Stop by Kill Devils Frozen Custard & Beach Fries

When it comes to restaurants in the Outer Banks, Kills Devil’s Frozen Custard and Beach Fries is one of the best. It is a casual place that serves burgers, fries, and custard. 

Take a tour with Ghost Tours Of Outer Banks

OBX Ghost Tours in Manteo offer an interactive tour experience as they share the most thrilling ghost stories that the barrier islands have to offer.

Take a kayak tour with Coastal Kayak Touring Co

The Coastal Kayak Turing Company offers private kayak and SUP tours in Corolla, Kitty Hawk, Hatteras Island, and the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge. 

Enjoy a rainy day at Corolla Movie And Bistro

Another activity to add to your list of the best things to do in the Outer Banks with kids when it’s raining is the Corolla Movie and Bistro. Watch a movie and grab a bite to eat while you wait for the rain to pass. 

Take a Hummer Adventure Tour

Hummer Adventure Tours offers unique experiences for visitors to the Outer Banks. You will enjoy zipping down the beach with the salty ocean breeze brushing across your face while wild horses run and play nearby. This is an incredibly cool bucket list experience. 

Experience a true coastal Carolinian dining tradition with Outer Banks Boil Company

The Outer Banks Boil Company has locations in Kitty Hawk and Corolla. If you are tired from a day exploring the islands, grab takeout from the boil company and enjoy a night in with delicious seafood.

Have fun at the Corolla Raceway

The Corolla Raceway is one of the best places to visit in the Outer Banks if you have young kids. Although adults and older children may enjoy spending the majority of a trip outdoors, younger kids… not so much. Take the kiddos to the Corolla Raceway for some fun that is more their speed.

Take a Back Country Safari Tour

The back country tours showcase the wild beauty of the Outer Banks. This includes seeing the wild Spanish Mustangs on the mustang preserve and exploring the unique ecology of the precious barrier islands that make up the Outer Banks.

Best Things To Do In The Outer Banks With Kids Continued

Grab something sweet from the Scratchmade Snackery

This sweet shop in Hatteras is sure to make your day better. They have everything from Key Lime Pie bars and bananas foster cheesecake, to Oreo brownies. 

Sample olive oils and balsamic vinegars at Outer Banks Olive Oil Company

Outer Banks Olive Oil is a seriously unique thing to see in the OBX. You can sample olive oils and vinegar and bring home a seriously unique souvenir or gift for a loved one from this store. 

Take a tour of the rum making process at OBX Distilling

OBX Distilery is in Manteo. Trying some of their Kill Devil Rum is a major OBX bucket list item!

Visit The Comedy Club of the Outer Banks

One of the best things to do in the Outer Banks with older kids is to visit the Comedy Club of the Outer Banks, located in Kill Devil Hills. 

Browse through the wines at Bacchus Wine & Cheese

 Bacchus Wine and Beer Bistro is another one of the best things for couples to do in the Outer Bank. Enjoy a selection of sandwiches and cheeses with a fine wine or craft beer. 

Take a yoga class at Soulshine Yoga or Duck Village Yoga

Yoga can be a great way to add to your relaxation and enjoyment on the islands. There are many popular studios to choose from, Soulshine Yoga and Duck Village Yoga are both good choices. 

Enjoy frozen yogurt at Surfin Spoon

Surfin Spoon Frozen Yogurt Bar in Nags Head is exactly where you need to be after a long day spent in the sun. Satisfy your sweet tooth and cool off at this lovely little yogurt bar!

Take part in an OBX Mystery Dinner

When you find yourself looking for things to do in the Outer Banks with kids when it rains, remember the OBX Mystery Dinner. The comedy-mystery sinner theater meals are four courses and a whole lot of fun!

Relax with some hot tea from Dolce Pastries & Desserts

This mouthwatering dessert shop in Kitty Hawk is out of this world! They have frozen cakes, artisan bread, savory pastries, and more for you to choose from. 

Go indoor rock climbing at Kitty Hawk Kites Nags Head location

Despite its name, there are more than just kites at Kitty Hawk Kites. There is an indoor rock climbing at the Nags Head location!

Take a jewelry making class at Studio 12

Studio 12 in Avon is a cute little business that offers craft-making classes, painting classes, and more. If you find yourself in the Outer Banks are a particularly hot day, remember what Studio 12 has to offer. 

Have fun on obstacle courses and slides at Bouncing Off The Walls

If you are looking for things to do in the Outer Banks with toddlers, consider checking out Bouncing Off The Walls. It is an indoor play place with lots of fun jump houses and other activities that kids will love. 

Enjoy malts, shakes, ice cream, fudge and more at The Olde Towne Creamery

After a hot afternoon exploring the Lost Colony and the historic streets of Manteo, you can head to the Olde Towne Creamery on Roanoke Island to grab a hot dog or ice cream. 

Take a cooking class a A Culinary Affair

Update: Permanently Closed

Go shelling on Ocracoke Beach

Ocracoke Beach is one of the best beaches in the Outer Banks for shelling. You can find large and colorful shells easily on the OBX beach. 

Grab a chilli cheese dog from Oh My Dog

Update: Permanently Closed

Go to Beach Braids for henna tattoos

Beach Braids is a shop in Nags Head where you can get henna tattoos and colorful braids put in your hair. If you are traveling with kids, this may be something that is up their alley. 

Make a rememberable craft souvenir at What The Shell

Play lazer tag and black light min-golf at Destination Fun

Destination Fun is in Kill Devil Hills and it is the perfect place to be on rainy or hot days in the Outer Banks. 

Go shopping in the Timbuck II Shopping Village

Do you love to shop when you’re on vacation? If so, you are going to want to check out the Timbuck II Shopping Village. 

Browse through the largest selection of wine and beer in the Outer Banks at Chip’s Wine & Beer Market

Chip Wine, Beer, and Cigars is the place to stop if you are looking to buy snacks and adult beverages to bring back to your hotel at night. They are located in Kill Devil Hills and they have more than 2000 wines and more than 600 craft beers. 

Watch a movie at RC Kill Devil Hills Movies

Couples and family travelers alike will love this movie theatre in Kill Devil Hills. Don’t let the rain get you down, just move the fun to the movies!

Grab a bagel for breakfast at Lighthouse Bagels

If you’re looking for a good breakfast restaurant in the Outer Banks, Lighthouse Bagels is what you’ve been looking for. The shop is in Corolla and they have a delicious menu on display. Cinnamon rolls, bagels, sandwiches, muffins, and more are all waiting for you at Lighthouse Bagels. 

Watch wild Spanish mustangs in Carova

Carova is the northernmost town in the Outer Banks and is only accessible by a 4 wheel drive vehicle. This is one of the best places to see wild horses in the Outer Banks. 

Grab a slice from Rocco’s Pizza

Update: Permanently Closed

The best fishing in the Outer Banks can be found at Cape Point. Keep in mind that this beach is only accessible with a four-wheel-drive vehicle. 

Collect shells on Shelly Island

This island has since disappeared. Then, in 2020 another island has sprouted up at the end of Cape Point. The conditions of this area are always changing, but it is worth a quick google search to see if there are good shelling conditions before you go.

Which of these things to do in the Outer Banks with kids will you do first?

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4 thoughts on “150 Best Things To Do In The Outer Banks With Kids

  1. I’m now officially in love with the Outer Banks and would want nothing more than to visit one day, especially to see that beautiful lighthouse. Thanks for sharing and have a good day 😀 Aiva

  2. Looks so fun and beautiful!! Lots of ideas! Will definitely put this on the list for future family vacays!

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