Highway 12 is a two-lane stretch that winds through the pristine North Carolina barrier islands known as the Outer Banks. Ocracoke to Corolla, which runs you about 115 miles, is one of the most scenic drives on the East Coast. Make a full trip out of it, and plan to stop along the way. This is the type of stretch that just begs for a proper road trip.
Famous for its lighthouse, the sixteen miles of undeveloped beaches, owned by the National Park Service, are perhaps the most stunning feature. For nature-lovers and explorers, Ocracoke provides endless opportunity. After a day on the beach or a hike through the dunes, Back Porch Restaurant is the spot for a meal on the eponymous screened porch. Ocracoke Oyster Co. is also great for your post-beach happy hour.
To get from Ocracoke to Hatteras, you have to abandon the car travel just for a moment to catch the ferry. Explore the iconic lighthouse and the expansive beaches. Hatteras comprises nearly half of the entire Outer Banks, so it’s a good spot to post up for the night. Stay a few nights in one of the many beachfront rentals and enjoy having your own kitchen and personal pool.
The easternmost point of the state. Rodanthe was made famous by the movie Nights in Rodanthe starring Richard Gere and Diane Lane. Visitors to this area enjoy the romance and solitude of this area’s beautiful beaches.
Probably the most popular of all the Outer Banks locations, the city of Nags Head is steeped in history and known for its gorgeous sand especially the sand dunes of Jockey’s Ridge, the largest natural sand dune on the east coast
The town of Kitty Hawk and the area of Kill Devil Hills are world renowned. In 1903 the Wright brothers made the first controlled powered airplane flight in the world’s history, a feat that has changed life as we know it. This town is a must stop on your road trip of the Outer Banks.
Year after year, Duck is ranked as one of the prettiest beaches in the entire country. The area’s quiet, pristine coastline features some of the widest sand beaches in the southeast and beautiful blue Atlantic ocean water.
End your Outer Banks road trip with a night or two stay in sophisticated Corolla. This northern Outer Banks town nestled between the Currituck Sound and the Atlantic Ocean has just about everything for the visitor: stunning and secluded beaches, a wide variety of restaurants and shops, and a plethora outdoor activities to enjoy.