The North Carolina Oyster Trail
The North Carolina Oyster Trail allows for various exciting experiences. There are seafood restaurants, shellfish farm tours, and seafood markets. The trail offers various educational opportunities for all ages. The region often holds festivals and events. These are focused on promoting community and fun interaction between locals and visiting tourists. Arts and outdoor recreation are common sights in the area.
There are many opportunities to have fun, learn and enjoy yourselves. Whether on vacation or just passing through, the trail has something for everyone. It is a great area to have fun while enjoying the best oysters and seafood there is to offer.
The Froggy Dog Restaurant and Pub
After starting as a hot dog stand, the Froggy Dog Restaurant and Pub has evolved. It has grown into one of the best seafood restaurants on Hatteras Island. It is family-owned and operated with a wide variety of menu options. The establishment offers event space and has a robust nightlife. The main attraction to the restaurant is Sunday Brunch. The menu is wide and offers options for children and adults alike. It is family-friendly and has designated options for children. The event spaces are a huge deal. The restaurant also offers catering services to events in the region.
Bald Head Conservancy
Focused on conservancy issues, the Bald Head Conservancy supports scientific research. It works together with other organizations with a similar cause. The conservancy is focused on protecting sea turtles at the Smith Island Complex. With the help of interns, the Sea Turtle Protection program runs to protect sea turtles. Interns assist with taking care of the eggs once the mother turtle leaves them. They conduct patrols to watch as they hatch and help the trapped hatchlings safely get to the water. Besides turtles, other endangered species are preserved at the conservancy.
Blackbeard’s Grill and Steam Bar
This is a festive tavern in Beaufort County. It includes a tiki bar, pool and live music every evening. The main menu item is seafood that is brought in by locals from nearby waters. The food is prepared using traditional steaming methods. Customers can choose any accompaniment on the menu to go with their main meal. There is a rich grog bar with custom alcoholic choices. The restaurant is known across state borders and offers free deliveries.
If you are looking for a place to let loose and enjoy marine life, Seavisions is for you. With different tour options and that are guided by professionals, it is nothing but fun. Seavisions Charters utilizes its unique landscape to give tourists the best experiences. There are wild horses, dolphins, seashells and sand dollars to be enjoyed. The tours are fun and pet accessible, so you will not have to leave your best friends behind. Seavisions is probably one of the few locations to allow alcoholic drinks. You will however need to be careful and not bring glasses around
Science by the Sea
This educational institution is one of a kind. Science by the Sea offers lessons to students interested in various fields. Topics range from Chemistry, Biology and Geology. It is focused on marine life in the region. Researchers organize regular expeditions into the sea. They carry out experiments and share information collected with the public. Students gain first hand experience with a fully equipped laboratory. The institution places direct focus on marine life that is rare. It carries out research on how best to preserve these species. In addition to all the great educational work, the view is breathtaking. Science by the Sea lives up to its name.
The Sandbar Oyster Company
This is a perfect example of when like-minded individuals come together to create greatness. Sandbar Oyster Company was formed by Dr. Niels Lindquist and David “Clammerhead” Cessna. It is a company focused on oyster farming and seashore restoration. The pair came up with top-notch technology that allows oyster farming to be easier. Their invention; Oyster Catcher, is biodegradable, lightweight, and eases the process of oyster farming. The company receives a great number of volunteers each season. They do honorable work and allow coastal communities to live better lives.
This is a company created by environmentally conscious individuals. The company collects plastic waste to make recycled plastic products. The team is focused on reducing plastic pollution. They have gained favor with local communities and businesses. What started out as a dream to recycle their personal waste has grown to a website of waste. Local businesses and communities offer their plastics to them to recycle. They carry out the recycling in a small warehouse, having started in a one-bedroom apartment.
Cape Hatteras Oyster Company
Cape Hatteras Oyster Company was founded by a father and son duo. Bill and Ryan Belter started out by harvesting oysters in the Pamlico Sound. They grew to start their company, which distributes oysters all over North Carolina and other states. The Belters found their signature oysters in Hatteras Salts. They breed these oysters in the clear waters of the Pamlico Sound. They are very much involved with the community and attend all aquaculture-related events.
Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station Museum
Before you leave Hatteras Island, be sure to visit the Chicamacomico Life-Saving Station, located in Rodanthe, North Carolina. Formerly an active station for the United States Life-Saving Service and United States Coast Guard, the only one designated as a teaching museum. While visiting be sure to stick around and catch the Breeches Buoy or Beach Apparatus Drill that was used up until the late 1950’s (helicopter rescue initiated) for rescues and saved more than 170,000 lives! If you’re coming as a group, be sure to make your reservations early as the tour is quite popular and spaces fill quickly.
Located on the Northern end of the Outer Banks, a visit to Historic Corolla is not complete until you see the Currituck Beach Lighthouse, the Whalehead Club, and Currituck Heritage Park. You don’t want to miss the view from high atop the 162-foot lighthouse or the self-guided tour at the Whalehead club and lastly a sunny afternoon in the Park enjoying the scenery or time out on the water, all available to the public today, but at one time long ago reserved only for the elite. If you’re lucky, you might even spot the Wild Horses of Corolla, but don’t blink, they are a shy bunch! Plenty of activities for all in your family to enjoy!
Roanoke Island Festival Park
Ever wonder what life was like for the first settlers from long ago? If so, then prepare to set sail for a new adventure of the old world at Roanoke Island Festival Park in Dare County. Children of all ages can journey back in time to meet, watch, and question historic costumed interpreters demonstrate how they survived back in the day throughout the Settlement site and Elizabeth II ship. Come and be entertained and enlightened at the many interactive exhibits in American Indian Town as well as the Adventure Museum! Fun for the entire family and great pictures to add to your Facebook page!
North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island
Get a front row seat to all the underwater activity at the North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island. You don’t want to miss the Graveyard of the Atlantic tank as you watch sharks and other fishes swim by within arms reach, so close you’d think you could touch them! And, who doesn’t love a “shark-by” when the shark is on the other side of the window? Ever wonder what a stingray or hermit crab might feel like? Get up close and personal with them at the two touch tanks.
And that’s not all folks, examine the one-third scale replica of the USS Monitor and imagine what travel in that would have been like… and leave room in your schedule for the Sea Turtle Rescue exhibit as well! Come and join the North Carolina
The Town of Columbia offers visitors access to it’s extensive natural resources, woodland areas, waterways, and wildlife activity and their Cultural Resource Center houses an environmental history museum that focuses on everyday life in the County. Residents and visitors alike speak highly of the shoreline beauty with its wooded boardwalk perfect for the strolls away from the everyday. And don’t forget to take in what is known as the pride of Columbia, the annual RiverTown Christmas celebration in December as well. .
Eastern 4-H Conference Center
Built to encourage and facilitate the learning experience, the Eastern 4-H Conference Center is available to help any HAT members to construct a unique training program sure to inspire any and all groups. Reportedly not far from where the colonists planned the first tea party, it’s location provides excellent facilities and close access to the area’s historical settings and its diverse natural delights. Rest assured there is more offered here than you can possibly take in for one day.
Somerset Place, now a state historic site, offers visitors as close a view of life on a Southern plantation during the Civil War era as is possible today. This unique attraction remains as the only plantation in North Carolina preserved and open to the public. Reportedly, more than 800 slaves passed through Somerset Place during its active life making it one of the South’s largest plantations, comprising 40+ buildings spread throughout the Lake Phelps area of the property.
Historic Plymouth’s history includes hosting a 3-day skirmish during the Civil War where the Ironclad first made its successful appearance on the battlefront. Only later to then be destroyed during a raid that was called, The Most Daring Mission of the Civil War, by the History Channel. Explore their Historic District with churches and museums located along the city’s waterfront area and don’t forget to walk the very favorable reviewed Civil War Trail sites throughout the Plymouth area and imagine what it might have been like during those times!
Historic Windsor is yet another North Carolina city that remains on the Civil War Discovery Trail with a milestone at Gray’s Landing that designates the battle that occurred at Windsor in 1864. A nice walk on the boardwalk along the Cashie River takes you to the Cashie River Center which is home to many exhibits that describe the local area as well as offering visitors the opportunity to rent a canoe and get out on the Cashie to take in all the history. There are many sites for visitors of all ages to see in Windsor.
Offering distinctive insights into the Civil War era rural life of eastern North Carolina, the Hope Plantation represents the architecture of those times, and visitors will also find a sizable gathering of the period’s furniture inside as well. Also on the property, the restored King-Bazemore House built in 1763, remains one of the few examples again of this Civil War era architecture. Both homes are on the National Register of Historic Places and are administered by the Historic Hope Foundation, Inc.
The delightful waterfront town called Historic Edenton has accumulated much national attention from the traveling press over the past several years. Once a major port during the colonial period and then the first capital of the North Carolina colony, this coastal town offers visitors the opportunity to relive those times and yet enjoy the present as well. From a casual walk through the downtown shops to a trolley tour of the Historic area or perhaps a narrated cruise of Edenton Bay, visitors will be amazed at the activities and fun Edenton offers!
Despite being known as a farming community, due to vast fields of corn and soybeans, Historic Hertford has surprises in store for those visitors looking for great fishing and hunting opportunities and various water sports activities on the Perquimans River. And for those so not inclined, there is a walking tour of the tree-lined historic home district and of course all the wonderful shops downtown. Hertford remains as one of the earliest permanent settlements in North Carolina and this quiet little river town is bathed in history, possessing the oldest house in the state that is still open to the public, the Newbold-White House.
Historic Elizabeth City
Historic Elizabeth City is a treasure trove of activities awaiting the eastern North Carolina visitor. Located near the Pasquotank River, visitors are encouraged to relive the colonial era with its historic walking tours including Civil war milestones, the Wright brothers dream of flight, and African American freedom seekers and their escape on the Underground Railroad. Continue your tour by visiting the six historic districts of Elizabeth City and don’t be surprised if you happen to catch some live music downtown or perhaps a local art gallery display.
Museum Of The Albemarle
The North Carolina Museum of the Albemarle offers visitors free admission to all the exhibits and though exhibits are self-guided, groups are welcomed, but highly advised to register ahead of their visit for specialized tours and those of course are based upon availability. While the museum represents the cultural history of the northeastern North Carolina counties, the featured exhibit, “Our Story” provides a more detailed and specific summary of life in this Albemarle region. For example, the Jackson House exhibit provides visitors a glimpse into the typical small farmhouse design of the day.
Historic Camden County
Historic Camden County is the recognized home to the Dismal Swamp Canal and the Visitor Center provides visitors with exhibits that celebrate its rich and dramatic history. Opened in the early 1800’s, the Dismal Swamp Canal is the oldest operating fabricated canal in the country. Listed in the Register of Historic Places, the Canal is part of the Civil War Trail and Intracoastal Waterway. Reportedly, it was also part of the Underground Railroad providing intimidating refuge for freedom seekers of the day. The Battle of South Mills during the Civil War, was the result of attempts to destroy the canal, which was an important supply link for the South.
Today, eco-tourism opportunities abound within Camden County and the Visitor Center is your primary contact for more information on those activities.
Visitors to Historic Jackson will re-discover the magic of small town life that existed throughout the South during the 18th century. Northampton county’s museum in fact, preserves this history and culture from the period with its numerous, rich with heritage exhibits. But don’t be fooled, this is not just your everyday run of the mill museum of Southern culture, but yet remains a working educational opportunity for young and old alike to take in the abundant natural and cultural resources of the area.
The town of Halifax, located on the Roanoke River, reeks of American Revolution history. Lighting the spark for independence, the Fourth Provincial Congress assembly, held in Halifax, first adopted the Halifax Resolves which was the first official action calling for all colonies to support independence. Guided tours of Historic Halifax takes you through several restored buildings of the era, the home of a local merchant, law office, and a wealthy planter’s home as well as a jail and the Tap Room tavern. The continued tour includes a visit to the local Spring, long a source of water for the area, the town park, marketplace, and the cemetery.
Those interested in Eco-tourism opportunities, will not want to miss nearby Medoc Mountain State Park with its Fishing Creek that flows 2.5 miles through the park and over 10 miles of equestrian and hiking trails along the creek.
Historic Tarboro, once a candidate to become North Carolina’s capital city, presents visitors with the state’s largest historic district and unique, one of only two in the United States, town common area. First on your list should be a visit to the Blount-Bridgers House & Arboretum. Listed in the Register of Historic Places, it served as the final home of Thomas Blount, who fought as an Officer in the Revolutionary War and today contains an art gallery of collections from local artists as well as the exceptional manicured grounds.
And speaking of manicured grounds, you’ll not want to miss the Calvary Episcopal Church with its unrivaled Gothic architecture and most exquisite stained glass windows in eastern North Carolina. Beyond the church and even more spectacular, is the bordering cemetery and it’s charming mix of native and exotic trees throughout the well tended to grounds.