Outer Banks, North Carolina
Home to the first flight of Orville and Wilbur Wright! Kitty Hawk was perfect for their aviation experiments due to the gentle winds regularly over 15 mph, sloping hills for launching and a sandy surface for landing. Kitty Hawk wasn’t incorporated until 1981 and now consists of a small village, residential beach cottages and a 461 acre maritime forest called Kitty Hawk Woods. And while Kitty Hawk and the Outer Banks have become a sought after tourist locale, the overall feeling is that development needs to always be in harmony with nature.
Come stroll on the beach and collect shells or bring your binoculars and try to spot unusual and rare birds. Spend some time in the water surfing, kite boarding or scuba diving. Do some deep sea fishing. Get your daily workout and climb to the top of the Cape Hatteras lighthouse. There are so many outdoor activities to choose from! Then top it all off with a wonderful fresh from the boat seafood dinner.
Wright Brothers National Monument and Museum
Celebrating the Wright Brothers achievements in air travel, the monument stands on the actual hill of that first flight back in 1900. A short stroll down the hill is the Museum complete with photos, exhibits and a replica of the plane that the Wright Brothers flew that memorable day.
Home to the first English Colony in the New World, there is now a Fort Raleigh National Historic Site on the island, honoring those first brave settlers. Other popular attractions include the Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse, the North Carolina Aquarium, the Elizabethan Gardens and The Lost Colony outdoor drama, now in its 76th season. The Lost Colony drama tells the story of the 117 settlers who sailed from Plymouth, England, landed on Roanoke Island and then vanished two years later.
Festival Park and Elizabeth II
Explore this 25 acre interactive historic site that includes the Roanoke Adventure Museum, the Settlement Site, an American Indian Town and more. Then board and discover life aboard a tall ship in the 16th century. Costumed sailors answer questions about the ship, set the sails, and swab the decks while you enjoy spectacular views from the quarterdeck.
Ferry Ride to Ocraoke and Cedar Island
Take a relaxing two and a half hour ferry ride in and around the Outer Banks including a stop on Cedar Island, a small fishing village known for its fresh seafood and wild horses. The 22 mile journey gives you plenty of opportunity to enjoy the beautiful scenery and smell the fresh salt air.
Located in New Bern, this Georgian-style residence was completed in 1770 and served as the first permanent capitol of North Carolina. In 1798 a fire destroyed the original building and it remained vacant until a complete renovation took place in the mid 1950s. Opened to the general public in 1959, the Tryon Palace now includes 16 acres of formal gardens along with three historically preserved homes, the Dixon House, the Stanley House and the Hay House. Also on the grounds is the North Carolina History Center.