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Best Weekend Trips from Rocky Mount NC

Best Weekend Trips from Rocky Mount NC

Along the shorelines of Eastern North Carolina lies quite a few quaint beach towns. These legendary and remote islands feature some of the best views of the Atlantic Ocean. So, if you spend most of your weekdays thinking about where to head next. Some of these beach towns are the best weekend trips from Rocky Mount, NC.

Emerald Isle

  • Distance - 129.9 miles
  • Travel time - 2 hr 21 min via North Carolina Hwy 58 S

On Bogues Bank Island, there is a small beach village known as Emerald Isle. It is a part of North Carolina's Crystal Coast. In the height of the summer, this wonderful town draws close to 50,000 visitors per week. The calm and relaxed atmosphere of Emerald Isle makes it a popular attraction.

The Emerald Isle offers a lot of visual beauty and enjoyable beach activities for a long weekend. You can immediately go on a nature trail at Emerald Isle Woods Park. Or, if you want history, visit Fort Macon State Park. Take surfing lessons at the Hot Wax Surf Shop or rent a jet ski at AB Sports for entertaining beach activities. Besides, kayaking is available in many places throughout the Emerald Isle!


  • Distance - 171.4 miles
  • Travel time - 3 hr 3 min via US-64 E

A small town, Corolla, sits halfway between the Currituck Sound and the Atlantic Ocean. It lies on the farthest northern end of the outer banks. Wide open, picturesque beaches, lighthouses and wild horses are all associated with Corolla. Part of what makes Corolla beaches alluring is their uncluttered and relaxed environment.

Once you arrive there, plan a day at the beach and get up early to see the dawn. A great excursion is taking a sightseeing tour to view the renowned Corolla wild horses. After checking off these two main sights, continue to a history tour of the area. The Currituck Beach Lighthouse and the Whalehead Club are the top historical attractions. The historic Corolla Park is another must-visit for history buffs. Further, there are some nearby that you can visit. These include the Currituck National Wildlife Refuge and the Corolla Adventure Park.


  • Distance - 193.3 miles
  • Travel time - 3 hr 19 min via US-64 E

Off the coast of North Carolina, there lies a barrier island called Hatteras Island. It runs parallel to the coast, producing a bend at Cape Hatteras. It ends up separating the Atlantic Ocean and the Pamlico Sound. The place is popular for offshore fishing, surfing, and boat building. But today, the Island is also known as Surfer's paradise.

Visitors can spend long and relaxing hours on the Cape Hatteras National Seashore. Follow it up by climbing the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse located on the beach. You can also book a horseback ride to tour the Cape Hatteras National Seashore. This unique ride allows the views of the Cape Hatteras lighthouse and the Atlantic Ocean. Moreover, it also overlooks Hatteras Inlet, Ocracoke Island, and the Pamlico Sound. For some water sports, you can visit the Hatteras Watersports and try jet skiing, kayaking, etc.

Nags Head

  • Distance - 139.3 miles
  • Travel time - 2 hr 16 min via US-64 E

Nags Head, North Carolina, has long been a favorite spot for beach vacations. This is due to its stunning beaches, delectable seafood options, and countless attractions. There are lots to enjoy on the seventeen miles long coastline of Nags head. From breathtaking views at the beaches to incredible art and nature.

Begin your trip by visiting Jockey's Ridge State Park for its famous towering sand dunes. The exhibits of local flora and fauna dot the park's promenade. Follow it up by the Roanoke Trail, which passes through a salt marsh and forest. It then arrives at a peaceful beach, it is one of the paths in Nags Head Woods Preserve. Next, head to Bodie Island Lighthouse, which was built in the 1870s. It gives spectacular views of Cape Hatteras National Seashore from its top. Besides these, you can visit adventure parks and partake in water sports at the Nags Head beaches.

Atlantic Beach

  • Distance - 126.2 miles
  • Travel time - 2 hr 17 min via US-70 E

The beautiful beaches and sunlight-glittering waters of Atlantic Beach, North Carolina, are well-known. It lies in Carteret County, North Carolina, and is among the five communities in Bogues Banks. This small coastal town features miles of wide, sandy beaches. There are also unlimited options for oceanfront entertainment.

While there, head to the immaculate beaches and partake in many activities on and off the sand. The Circle at Atlantic Beach, over the Atlantic Beach Causeway, is favored by tourists. Next, you can move on to Oceanana Fishing Pier. It is a well-known landmark of Atlantic Beach and a well-liked neighborhood hangout. The pier is one of the best places to fish along the Crystal Coast. It also offers some of the finest expansive ocean views.

ENC Explorer
Author: ENC Explorer

After getting accepted to ECU, I started looking for things to do in and around Greenville, NC. However, my searches kept taking me to places in South Carolina! There must be things to do around ECU, so I started asking other students. They kept telling me to graduate and move away! This inspired me to begin exploring eastern North Carolina and build this website as a showcase of the places to go, sights to see, and things to do all over eastern NC. I have fallen in love with this region and started taking up roots here. After graduating, I didn't move away - I bought a house here and continue to explore eastern North Carolina.

This place is for Publicity

This place is for Publicity

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