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15 best things to do in hatteras nc

Introduction: Welcome to Hatteras NC

Hatteras NC, a lovely and laid-back community on the southernmost portion of North Carolina’s Outer Banks, is ideal for travelers seeking both a pleasant and exciting vacation. Hatteras is a well-liked vacation spot for families, couples, and lone travelers alike because of its miles of immaculate beaches, magnificent scenery, and rich history. Hatteras has activities for everyone, whether you wish to explore the area’s natural beauty or partake in thrilling water sports. To assist you in creating the ideal travel itinerary, this guide will examine the top activities to do in Hatteras NC

1. Hatteras Island Lighthouse

The Hatteras Island Lighthouse is one of the most iconic landmarks in the Outer Banks, attracting visitors from all over the world. This black-and-white spiral tower stands 198 feet tall and was built in 1870 to guide ships through the dangerous Diamond Shoals. Today, you can climb to the top of the lighthouse and enjoy panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and the Pamlico Sound. If you’re lucky, you may even spot dolphins, sea turtles, or whales from the top.

2. Beaches in Hatteras

Hatteras Island boasts some of the most pristine and secluded beaches on the East Coast, offering miles of soft sand, rolling waves, and stunning sunsets. Whether you’re looking for a quiet spot to relax or a place to surf, fish, or swim, there’s a beach in Hatteras that will suit your needs. Some of the most popular beaches include:

Cape Hatteras National Seashore

Ocracoke Island

Avon Beach

Frisco Beach

Rodanthe Beach

3. Fishing in Hatteras

Hatteras NC is a paradise for anglers, with its abundant waters teeming with various fish species, including bluefin tuna, yellowfin tuna, wahoo, marlin, sailfish, and more. Whether you prefer offshore, inshore, or surf fishing, there are plenty of charter boats, piers, and beaches in Hatteras that offer world-class fishing experiences. You can also participate in fishing tournaments, learn from local experts, or simply enjoy the thrill of catching your own dinner.

4. Surfing in Hatteras

Hatteras is a surfer’s dream come true, with its consistent waves, warm waters, and uncrowded breaks. Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, you can find a spot to ride the waves in Hatteras. Some of the best surfing beaches include:

Cape Hatteras Lighthouse Beach

Frisco Beach

Avon Beach

Rodanthe Beach

5. Kiteboarding in Hatteras

If you’re looking for a more adventurous water sport, try kiteboarding in Hatteras NC. This extreme sport involves using a kite to pull yourself on a board, providing an exhilarating experience like no other. Hatteras is known for its perfect conditions for kiteboarding, with steady winds, shallow waters, and wide open spaces.

6. Paddleboarding in Hatteras

For more laid-back water activities, paddleboarding is a great option. Paddleboarding involves standing on a longboard and paddling through calm waters, allowing you to explore the natural beauty of Hatteras at your own pace. You can paddle through quiet marshes, hidden coves, or along the shoreline, enjoying the scenery and wildlife. Some popular paddleboarding spots in Hatteras include the Pamlico Sound, Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge, and the Hatteras Inlet.

7. Wildlife Tours in Hatteras

Hatteras is home to a diverse array of wildlife, including sea turtles, dolphins, shorebirds, and even wild horses. You can take a guided wildlife tour to learn more about the local flora and fauna and see them up close. You can go on a kayak tour, a boat tour, or a walking tour, depending on your interests and preferences. Some popular wildlife tours in Hatteras include the Hatteras Island Wildlife Tours, the Outer Banks Wild Horse Tour, and the Dolphin and Whale Watching Tour.

8. Scuba Diving in Hatteras

Hatteras is also a great place for scuba diving, with its clear waters and rich marine life. You can explore shipwrecks, artificial reefs, and natural formations, discovering hidden treasures and unique ecosystems. Some popular scuba diving sites in Hatteras include the Graveyard of the Atlantic, the Diamond Shoals, and the U-352 German Submarine.

9. Hatteras Island Historical Sites

Hatteras Island has a rich history, dating back to the Native American tribes that inhabited the area before the arrival of European settlers. You can visit various historical sites in Hatteras to learn more about its past and its cultural heritage. Some popular historical sites in Hatteras include the Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station, the Fort Raleigh National Historic Site, and the Roanoke Island Festival Park.

10. Museums in Hatteras

If you’re interested in art, science, or history, Hatteras has several museums that offer educational and entertaining exhibits. You can learn about the local maritime history, the natural environment, or the works of local artists. Some popular museums in Hatteras include the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum, the Frisco Native American Museum, and the Dare County Arts Council Gallery.

11. Art Galleries in Hatteras

Hatteras is also home to many talented artists, whose works are on display in local galleries and shops. You can admire paintings, sculptures, pottery, jewelry, and other art forms, or even purchase a unique souvenir to take home. Some popular art galleries in Hatteras include the SeaDragon Gallery, the Blue Pelican Gallery, and the Kinnakeet Clay Studio and Showroom.

12. Restaurants and Bars in Hatteras

After a day of exploring, you can indulge in some of the delicious local cuisine and drinks in Hatteras. You can sample fresh seafood, Southern-style barbecue, craft beer, or cocktails, enjoying the laid-back atmosphere and the friendly locals. Some popular restaurants and bars in Hatteras include the Hatteras Sol Waterside Grill, the Sandbar and Grille, and the Ocracoke Oyster Company.

13. Shopping in Hatteras

If you’re looking for souvenirs, gifts, or local products, Hatteras has many shopping options to choose from. You can browse through beachwear, books, art, pottery, jewelry, and other items, finding something that suits your taste and budget. Some popular shopping destinations in Hatteras include the Hatteras Landing Shopping Center, the Island Artworks, and the Village Market Red & White.

14. Accommodations in Hatteras

If you’re planning to stay in Hatteras for more than a day, you can choose from a variety of accommodations that suit your needs and preferences. You can stay in a hotel, motel, vacation rental, campground, or bed and breakfast, depending on your budget and desired level of comfort. Some popular accommodations in Hatteras include the Cape Hatteras Motel, the Hatteras Island Inn, and the Lighthouse View Oceanfront Lodging.

15. Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge

This refuge is home to a variety of bird species, including herons, egrets, and pelicans. You can explore the refuge on foot or by bike, and there are plenty of opportunities for wildlife spotting.


A hidden treasure in North Carolina, Hatteras has a variety of things to do and places to see for tourists of all ages and interests. Hatteras features activities for everyone, including museums, restaurants, and tours of the local wildlife and waterways. In Hatteras, you can find everything you’re searching for, whether it’s excitement, leisure, or culture. So be ready for a fantastic trip and pack your bags for Hatteras.

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1. What is the best time to visit Hatteras?

The best time to visit Hatteras is from May to September when the weather is warm and sunny and the water is perfect for swimming and water sports.

2. Are there any hiking trails in Hatteras?

Yes, Hatteras has several hiking trails that offer scenic views of the natural beauty of the island, including the Cape Hatteras National Seashore and the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge.

3. Can I go fishing in Hatteras?

Yes, Hatteras is a popular destination for fishing enthusiasts, with its abundant marine life and fishing charters that offer deep-sea, surf, and pier fishing.

4. What is the closest airport to Hatteras?

The closest airport to Hatteras is the Norfolk International Airport, which is about 2.5 hours away by car.

5. Can I bring my pet to Hatteras?

Yes, Hatteras is a pet-friendly destination, with many accommodations, restaurants, and beaches that allow pets. Just make sure to follow the rules and regulations regarding pets.



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