Posted by Outer Banks Blue

What to Expect When You Visit the NC Outer Banks

Tired of crowded coastal resorts? The Outer Banks will come as a pleasant surprise. These breathtaking barrier islands offer a peaceful retreat, far removed from the hustle-bustle. Some beaches – like the private ones in Southern Shores or the remote beach at False Cape State Park – deliver plenty of privacy with very few people.

What else can you expect to find in the NC Outer Banks?

Places to Stay?

Most visitor housing consists of picturesque homes and condos. These spacious beach house rentals provide a unique experience – cozy, warm, and welcoming, yet loaded with luxury amenities...and with no ugly high-rises to mar your view of the stunning seascape. If you're planning an Outer Banks vacation rentals, these accommodations offer the perfect blend of comfort and tranquility amidst the natural beauty of the islands.

Where to Get Groceries

Planning a beachfront picnic? Need to stock up on snacks? Want to whip up a few mouthwatering meals in your rental home's gourmet kitchen?

The Outer Banks offer a wide range of food stores, from chain supermarkets and convenience stores to specialty grocery shops.

Seeking the familiar supermarkets you know and love? Check out:

  • Food Lion, a regional chain, with stores in Corolla, Southern Shores, Kill Devil Hills, Nags Head, and Avon

  • Harris Teeter stores in Corolla and Kill Devil Hills

  • Publix in Kill Devil Hills

  • Fresh Market, an upscale gourmet grocery, in Nags Head

Prefer locally owned establishments? Here are just a few, from Corolla in the northern Outer Banks to Hatteras in the south:

  • Seaside Farm Market, Corolla, specializing in ultra-fresh seafood, homemade ice cream, handcrafted fudge, and fresh local produce

  • Waves Market & Deli, home of legendary build-your-own sandwiches

  • OBXOrganix, Avon, offering Certified Organic, non-GMO, and gluten-free groceries

  • Conner's Supermarket, Buxton, an Outer Banks fixture for over 50 years

  • Village Market Red & White, a Hatteras legend, founded in 1866

Department and Big-Box Stores

Need a new swimsuit or coverup? Seeking toys and games for the beach or charcoal for the grill? You'll find all this and more at a number of stores throughout the Outer Banks.

Looking for a big-box retailer that stocks anything and everything? Visit the brand-new Target store in Kill Devil Hills. Or check out the Walmart Supercenter in Kitty Hawk.

Prefer an upscale retailer with a venerable pedigree? You'll find a beautiful Belk department store in Kill Devil Hills.

Love shopping for bargains? Come to T.J. Maxx in Nags Head. Plus, drop by Outlets Nags Head, where you can get famous brands at a discount.

Seeking specialty shops that stock beach-friendly wares from T-shirts to souvenirs? If you're staying in the north-central Outer Banks, stop by Gray's Outer Banks Clothing Company in Kitty Hawk. Or visit Just for the Beach, Oceans Beachwear, and Super Wings in Nags Head.

Need to rent a surfboard, kayak, or stand-up paddleboard? You'll find Kitty Hawk Kites, a major watersports outfitter, at multiple Outer Banks locations: Corolla, Duck, Nags Head, Manteo, Rodanthe, Avon, Hatteras Village, and Ocracoke.


One of the best parts of visiting the Outer Banks is the food! Local restaurants boast fresh catches and other delights daily. Give your taste buds a treat at Austin Fish Company, Blue Moon Grill, and others in Nags Head.

Beachside Bistro and Bonzer Shack Bar & Grill serve Kill Devil Hills, while you can get awesome seafood and other fare at Barefoot Bernie’s and Outer Banks Boil in Kitty Hawk.

Duck offers Duck Duck Burgers, NC Coast Grill & Bar, and the original Duck Donuts serving freshly made, warm gourmet donuts daily.

Travel around. Because it’s a coastal area, every town will have something to satisfy your cravings.

Urgent Care When You Need It

You never know when you might face a sudden medical issue. Luckily there are several urgent-care clinics serving the Outer Banks:

  • Sunny Care Clinic PLLC in Duck

  • Outer Banks Hospital Urgent Care in Kitty Hawk

  • Surf Urgent Care in Kill Devil Hills

  • Outer Banks Urgent Care and Outer Banks Hospital in Nags Head

  • Island Mobile Medical Care, PA, in Hatteras

Pharmacies for Prescriptions and More

Running out of your OTC allergy meds? Need to fill a prescription? Want to stock up on topical analgesics for sunburn and insect bites? You'll find drugstores throughout the Outer Banks, including:

  • The in-store pharmacy in Harris Teeter, Corolla

  • CVS in Southern Shores, Kill Devil Hills, and Manteo

  • Walgreens in Kitty Hawk and Kill Devil Hills

  • Bear Drugs and Walmart's in-store pharmacy in Kitty Hawk

  • Island Pharmacy in Manteo

  • Beach Pharmacy in Avon and Hatteras

Auto Repair and Body Work

Car trouble can crop up at any time, even when you're on vacation. Fortunately there are plenty of skilled mechanics in the NC Outer Banks, including:

  • Outer Banks Automotive Repair in Kitty Hawk

  • OBX Affordable Automotive Repair and Bayside Body Shop in Kill Devil Hills

  • JB's Auto Repair and Pugh's Car Care Center at Nags Head

  • Lighthouse Automotive in Manteo

This is just a small sampling of the resources available in the North Carolina Outer Banks. So, relax. When you visit these beautiful islands, you'll have everything you need at your fingertips.

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