When you hear the words “Kitty Hawk,” what comes to mind?
If you’re like most of us, you probably think of the Wright Brothers, the world-famous flight pioneers who flew the first powered airplane just a few miles away at a site now called Kill Devil Hills.
But there’s actually much more to Kitty Hawk than its legendary aviation history. This beautiful Outer Banks town offers plenty to see and do – for families, couples, students, tour groups, and pretty much everyone else.
Spend a day here – or two or more – and see for yourself!
Start with a Scrumptious Breakfast
Hankering for a hearty morning meal? Kitty Hawk boasts several popular eateries that specialize in delectable daytime noshing:
- At Stack’Em High Pancakes (3801 North Croatan Highway), you can order everything from savory bacon, eggs, and sausage to fluffy flapjacks, waffles, and French toast. Not to mention specialty pancakes smothered in coconuts, blueberries, pecans, chocolate chips, and more! Try the legendary three-egg omelets, a big favorite with locals and tourists.
- At Duck Donuts (5230 North Virginia Dare Trail), you can sip rich Arabica coffee while nibbling warm, freshly made donuts covered with your own custom choice of delicious drizzles and toppings. You can even order donut sandwiches and sundaes loaded with your pick of tasty toppings and fillings. No wonder this OBX cafe chain has become a local legend!
- At Outer Bean Cafe (3701 North Croatan Highway), you can fill up on luscious lattes, smoothies, and simple-yet-healthy breakfast fare… including tasty options for both meat lovers and vegans / vegetarians.
Take a Hike Through a Coastal Wonderland
Love the great outdoors? You’re in luck. Just minutes away from your rental, you’ll find the Kitty Hawk Woods Reserve – 1,824 gorgeous acres, bounded by Currituck Sound to the west and Kitty Hawk Bay to the south.
Here you can hike multiple trails amid lush maritime forest, grassy marshes, and brackish swampland. You can even launch a boat from a public dock to access picturesque High Bridge Creek.
Choose from Countless Outdoor Activities
What’s your pleasure? Hiking? Birding? Biking? Horseback riding? Running? Kayaking? Windsurfing? Stand-up paddle boarding?
You can do all this and more in this pristine wooded reserve. And, while you’re at it, you’ll catch glimpses of all kinds of coastal wildlife. Be sure to bring along your camera!
To reach the reserve, park at either of two small parking lots – one at David Paul Pruitt Park, the other at Sandy Run Park. Enter via the multiuse path that runs along Woods Road.
Relive History with Fascinating Sightseeing
Of course, no trip to Kitty Hawk is truly complete without a visit to the Wright Brothers Memorial at 1000 North Croatan Highway in nearby Kill Devil Hills.
Open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. year ’round (except Christmas Day), this interactive park lets you:
- Explore the pathway the Wright brothers took to launch the first fuel-powered airplane.
- View the towering national monument commemorating that fabled flight.
- Tour authentic reproductions of the brothers’ 1903 campgrounds.
- Examine a realistic replica of the Wrights’ legendary plane, authentic to the last detail.
- Plus see much more – from an interpretive Wright Brothers program to a gallery of famous aviators.
Refuel with a Fabulous Lunch
By now, you’ve probably worked up a hearty appetite. So, why not grab a bite at a top-rated local bistro? Kitty Hawk offers plenty of family-style options, many with oceanfront views and outdoor shoreside seating. Check out Rundown Cafe, Art’s Place, Barefoot Bernie’s Tropical Grill, and Black Pelican Oceanfront Restaurant, among many others.
Visit Avalon Fishing Pier
Ready to walk off your lunch? Stroll along Avalon Fishing Pier at Mile Post 6 in Kill Devil Hills. Though it’s just 700 feet long, this popular pier provides endless colorful sights.
There’s even a well-stocked bait-and-tackle shop, so if you’re up for some angling, you’ll have everything right at your fingertips. Cast your line for abundant mackerel, drum, pompano, sea trout, flounder, croaker, bluefish, and much more. Or simply take in the spectacular views across miles of open ocean.
Take the Kids to the Children @Play Museum
Are the little ones getting restless? Bring them to Kitty Hawk’s Children@Play Museum (3810 North Croatan Highway) for an hour or more of interactive fun and games, with a focus on family-friendly learning. Ideal activity for a rainy afternoon!
Savor a Delicious OBX Dinner
Kitty Hawk offers dinner options for every palate and preference.
Would you like to dine out at an elegant shorefront restaurant? Visit a local club for nightlife and live entertainment? Or simply carry some tasty takeout back to your OBX rental for a relaxing family supper? Whatever you decide, it’s sure to be truly memorable.
End with an Evening Stroll on the Shore
For the ultimate Kitty Hawk experience, take a post-dinner seaside stroll along a beautiful public beach. There’s nothing quite like rambling over soft, warm sand or wading through silvery waves as the sun sets over Currituck Sound.
Sounds heavenly, doesn’t it? Start planning your Outer Banks getaway now… and don’t forget to include a fabulous day at Kitty Hawk!