Hatchling Rules

By Karen Sota

Although our turtle mamas are still technically “on the clock” with the official nesting season continuing through this month it’s their babies that have taken over the spotlight. We’re hoping that our nest count keeps climbing to that hundred mark, but for now hatchlings rule. With the patter of thousands of tiny flippers on Topsail it’s time for a quick review of some of the FAQ’s from our island visitors.

When will a nest hatch?
 By far it’s the question we’re asked the most, and no matter how many times we get it our answer is still the same: we don’t know. We’re not being maliciously obtuse, it’s the truth. We don’t know when these turtle babies will be “born” any better than you know exactly the date and time of your granddaughter’s birth. They come out whenever they’re ready.

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Take a break from the sun on your Topsail Island Vacation

Need a break from the sun on your Topsail Island Vacation?


Things to do when you need a break from the sun while on your Topsail Island

Vacation, here are our suggestions on what to do.

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Tryon Palace’s Outlander Weekend

outlander weekend Tryon palace

Are you a fan of the Outlander book series by Diana Gabaldon? If so, you won’t want to miss Tryon Palace’s upcoming Outlander Weekend, happening November 9th-12th in historic downtown New Bern.


In the words of Celtic Force, “Imagine having special access to the Palace where Claire was held by Governor Martin in Colonial America. Visit the kitchen and stables, tour the interior of the Palace, wander the herb and flower gardens on the grounds, have dinner and wine on the South Lawn of this Historic Palace as the sound of bagpipes fill the night air. You will think you have traveled back in time. And that’s just a small portion of what we have planned.”

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Why You Shouldn’t Miss these NC Seafood Festivals!


It’s festival season and while many associate that with Oktoberfest celebrations and an abundance of bratwurst, in coastal North Carolina we kickoff fall with a different kind of delectable treat: seafood. While seafood is always in abundance here, it’s celebrated extensively throughout the month of October. Up and down the coast, people come together to feast on fresh seafood and show the rest of the country who has the finest fishing around.

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Fishing in the Fall on the North Carolina Coast

fall fishing

There’s no denying that the NC Coast is chockfull of outdoor activities, beautiful beaches and ideal spots to escape the city and take advantage of nature and all the benefits it has on the soul. As the summer chaos subsides, it’s time to step away from lounging at the beach and take advantage of one of the most popular fall activities in North Carolina – fishing! Here’s a look at the many ways everyone, from novice to experienced, can reel one in this fall:

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Must See North Carolina Lighthouses

lighthouses in North Carolina

National Lighthouse Day was on August 7th! In the spirit of the “holiday,” we want to enlighten you on the must-see lighthouses on our North Carolina coast. If you’re looking for an exciting and educational adventure to round out the summer, you won’t want to miss any of these picturesque North Carolina lighthouses.

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Sylvan Heights Bird Park: A Wild Adventure

Have you ever wanted to experience South America, North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia without leaving the beautiful North Carolina coast? Look no further than Sylvan Heights Bird Park. Located on the Northern Coast in Scotland Neck, NC, Sylvan Heights is unlike any zoo, aquarium, or animal-centric park you have ever experienced. With over 2,000 waterfowl, parrots, toucans, flamingos, and other exotic birds from around the world, it is anything but “for the birds.” Open to the public, Sylvan Heights is an experience you and your family won’t soon forget.

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The Top 5 Must-Do Activities at Hammocks Beach State Park

hammocks beach state park

Considering an island getaway filled with wildlife and privacy? Hammocks Beach State Park, or Bear Island, is a three-mile-long sanctuary for relaxation and serenity that can fulfill your summer desire right here in North Carolina. Hop on a ferry, equipped with your favorite picnic basket, and indulge in some needed leisure time with miles of unpopulated beach.

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Fall Vacations on the North Carolina Coast

fall vacations

Does the idea of an uncrowded beach sound divine?  What about cooler nights and stars that light up the sky? If you’re more of a quiet avoid-crowds-at-any-expense kind of traveler, a trip to the North Carolina coast is just a few clicks away! Don’t worry, while the crowds may fade away the action is just picking up. With numerous events going on, specifically on the Central Coast, you and your family are sure to have an incredible time! After all, fall is the ideal time to relax at the beach, take advantage of the warmer water temperature and the cooler nights that allow you to miss the extreme heat of the summer. Looking to explore inland? We’ve got some great suggestions for things to do during your next NC coast getaway:

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Experience Something New in North Carolina

The North Carolina coast is a hidden gem filled with adventure and unforgettable experiences! Come feel the excitement, feast on the region’s culinary delights, and relax in accommodations that range from large hotels to quaint rentals by the beach. Whatever type of getaway you’re looking for, we have it here on the North Carolina coast. Not sure what area to stay in? Here’s a look at our beloved coastline broken down into three regions: The Northern Coast, Central Coast, and Southern Coast.

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Celebrate July Fourth NC Style – North Carolina Coast Host

July Fourth

July Fourth is reason enough to celebrate, although a weekend on the NC Coast will make it even better. Whether you’ve already planned your getaway or are just considering it at this point, we’ve got a number of exciting events and festivities taking place up and down the entire coast for everyone to enjoy. Here’s a look at our Top 3 events that will have you dancing, enjoying delicious food and watching spectacular fireworks displays while celebrating America’s birthday:

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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.
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Celebrate North Carolina’s Rich Military History

Calling all history buffs! From the much-anticipated Wings Over Wayne event to a fort, which was once a project worked on by Robert E. Lee, the NC Coast is home to many military memorials that you don’t want to miss.

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A Lesson in North Carolina Wine

Close your eyes and think of North Carolina. Now open them. You probably weren’t thinking of wine, were you? Well, though you might not think about wine when you think of North Carolina, did you know that North Carolina is actually home to over 100 wineries? There are also two main focuses here in our state: Europena-Style Vinifera grapes, which are prominent in the Western and Piedmont areas, while native muscadine grapes are what populates the coastal region. 

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Spring is in the Air in Eastern North Carolina

Spring is in the air in Eastern North Carolina – spring festivals that is. In addition to ideal weather, the eastern part of the state serves as a host to must-attend festivals each spring that you won’t want to miss. Whether you’re planning your next vacation for April or May, you’re sure to find a calendar of events chock-full with fun festivals for the whole family.

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How a NC Coast Host Membership Will Help Your Business

With a mission “to increase economic growth by promoting travel and tourism along North Carolina’s three hundred mile coastline,” NC Coast Host has established itself as the premier tourism marketing association in eastern North Carolina. Membership to our non-profit group allows tourism professionals to interact, network, and collaborate with one another to share the history, culture, and beauty of the North Carolina coast with visitors and residents. Some of the benefits members receive are: 

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3 Reasons You Should Book Your Summer Vacation on the North Carolina Coast Early

While a spontaneous weekend trip in the middle of the summer can be fun for the family, planning your vacation well in advance has many notable advantages. As North Carolina’s Coast is a popular vacation destination, if you’re hoping to visit anywhere from Elizabeth City to Wilmington this summer you may want to consider booking your trip a little earlier this year. This is also important if you’re considering booking one of the incredible rental properties on the Northern, Central and Southern coast. Here’s a look at why, if you’re thinking of visiting the NC coast, you should plan ahead:

crystal coast photo gallery

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3 Interesting Places You Must Visit on the North Carolina Coast

When you visit the coast of North Carolina, it is very easy to stay on the beach, relaxing in the sun and enjoying all the activities the coast has to offer. However, there are a number of exciting non-beach outings to be enjoyed in coastal North Carolina and here’s a look at three memorable choices. That’s right, beyond our amazing shores, we have some interesting destinations that you’ll want to add to your must-see list for your next vacation.

Camden County Dismal Swamp

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