Soak Up the Sun this Summer in North Carolina

hammocks beach state park

While a visit to the North Carolina coast typically consists of long, sunny days spent on the beach, there is so much more to see and do – especially in the spring months when temperatures are still mild and enjoyable. We have rounded up 3 non-beach activities up and down the coast for you to check out this season.

Northern: Paddle for the Border Event

Paddle for the Border is an annual paddling excursion where hundreds of paddlers will make the 7.5-mile journey to the North Carolina/Virginia border in the Dismal Swamp Canal.  The event began fourteen years ago as a way to celebrate the canal’s rich history (which dates back to 1763).  The event kicks off with a pre-launch breakfast in South Mills, NC at the Dismal Swamp State Park and continues with a leisurely 3-hour trip to cross the state line, wrapping up with a picnic lunch on the grounds of the Dismal Swamp Canal Trail in Chesapeake, VA.  For more info and registration, visit:


Central: Hammocks Beach State Park (ferry rides/tours/camping)

Located in Onslow County, Hammocks Beach State Park and Bear Island is the place to go for those wanting to enjoy some fun at some of the most unspoiled beaches along the entire Atlantic Coast. About 18 miles from Jacksonville, the park is only accessible by private boat or ferry ride. The serene spot offers a total of 17 campsites with ocean views, picnic tables, and access to hiking trails as well. Your agenda will be crowded with fun activities such as picnicking, fishing, boating, and swimming.


Southern: Bald Head Island Conservancy

The Bald Head Island Conservancy group is a non-profit organization dedicated to conservation, preservation, and education. Through their family programs, they offer many fun and exciting activities.  The Island Nature Tour consists of a guided tour of wildlife hotspots including exploring pristine beaches, maritime forest, and salt marsh. Kayaking is available to guests to venture out into unspoiled creeks or low tide kayaking seasonally.  You can even join in on a sea turtle patrol ride along to witness a sea turtle or hatching nest. To see BHI through the eyes of an expert, visit


It doesn’t matter if you’re headed for the southeastern part of the state or hanging out up near the Virginia boarder, the NC coast is home to many fun activities and interesting places that anyone can enjoy – no beach required. Head to for even more suggestions!

For additional information and to apply for membership, please contact:

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