Choosing the Perfect Accommodations for your Brunswick Islands Vacation

In North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands, you don’t have to compromise when it comes to choosing your vacation accommodations. The islands and coastal communities are full of lodging options for every group size and itinerary. Read on to learn more about the benefits of every type of accommodations the Brunswick Islands have to offer and how to find your perfect “home away from home.” You can also visit www.ncbrunswick.com/accommodations for a full listing of the area’s accommodations.

Vacation Rental Homes

Vacationing families who want to be near or on the beach can find the perfect fit for their stay with one of the vacation rentals throughout the Brunswick Islands. Beach vacation rental homes often become a tradition for families, and they return to the same house year after year. Along with easy access to the beach, vacation rentals offer the comforts of home with full kitchens, and gathering space for the entire family to spend time together and relax. Choose from cozy condos and beach cottages to grand oceanfront homes able to accommodate a large family reunion. Vacation rental homes along the Intracoastal Waterway or island canals are also a great option for visitors with boats looking for direct boating access to the water.

If you’re new to the concept of renting a beach house, check out our video page for rental experience videos in which families share why they love renting a beach house for their family’s vacation.

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Hotels and Inns

Don’t need the space provided by a vacation home rental or looking for traditional hotel services? The Brunswick Islands offer a variety of hotels and inns to choose from. Locally-owned inns on the islands offer an intimate experience with an array of amenities, all close to the beach. National brand hotels can be found off the islands, making for an easy drive to sites and attractions beyond the beach. Many hotels and inns feature pools, hot breakfasts, bikes and fitness centers adding even more relaxation to your vacation.

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Golf Resorts

Visitors looking to vacation beyond the beach have two golf resorts to choose from in the Brunswick Islands – Sea Trail Resort and Brunswick Plantation & Golf Resort. Split your days between golf, the on-site pools and the nearby beach, maximizing your vacation fun! Golf resorts offer spacious accommodations (one to three-bedroom villas), many with kitchens, as well as on-property amenities like fitness and activity centers, pro shops and restaurants. 

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Bed and Breakfasts

For history mixed with southern hospitality, stay at one of the B&Bs in scenic Southport, many dating back to the 1800s. These accommodations offer a unique and romantic experience for couples with charming rooms, several furnished with antiques, and amenities such as delicious breakfasts, and bikes to explore the town and waterfront at your leisure! Southport is an idyllic waterside town and a favorite walking area for many, with Victorian-style homes and live oak trees making for a picturesque stroll. Historic walking and tram tours are also available for those wanting to learn more about the area’s past.

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To begin planning your vacation to North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands, visit www.NCBrunswick.com. You can also view current Lodging Specials and Packages at www.ncbrunswick.com/specials.

Enjoy a Labor Day Getaway Without the Crowds in North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands

escape to the beach vacation of your childhood this Labor Day weekend in North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands. While other vacation getaways become packed with fellow vacationers, North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands remain a laid back retreat with plenty of elbow room along the beaches. Enjoy a quintessential island escape on this long weekend getaway to the Carolina coast.

DSC_7872_LRStroll through charming island towns and reminisce of your childhood seaside vacations. For the quintessential island experience, rent a beach bike to discover the treasures of the Islands for yourself. Meander through the historic tree-lined streets of Southport to admire historic picturesque Southern homes or wind your way through the dozens of specialty shops, art galleries and antique stores. Play one of the area’s 30 plus golf courses or take your adventure to the sky and climb one of the Brunswick Islands’ historic lighthouses for endless views of marsh, beach and water.

Dining HRaltWhat would a Labor Day Weekend be without memorable mouthwatering dining? Experience authentic Calabash seafood in the town that created “Calabash style”. Take advantage of outdoor dining options with gorgeous views along the Intracoastal Waterway. For dessert, sprinkle some extra sweetness on your weekend by testing out the frozen treats at numerous locally-owned creameries and ice cream shops throughout the Islands and the mainland.

kayaks at bridge SBSoak in the warmth of summer while sailing across salt or freshwater. Spend the day aboard a boat gazing out on the crystal blue ocean while deep sea fishing or basking in the sun alongside loved ones. If you’re looking for a more personal experience on the water, rent a paddleboard, kayak or canoe or take a guided tour to explore calm freshwater rivers or saltwater tides.

For an experience unique to North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands, grab your board and get ready to hang ten in the Oak Island Labor Day Surf Off. All levels and ages are invited to join in the sun, sand and surf at this annual event. Various age and surf categories will compete throughout the day in 15-minute heats. Children and adult surfers alike are welcome to join the Stand-Up Paddle board race later in the afternoon.

DSC_8114_BICYCLEThere is no need to face crowded beaches with a maze of umbrellas and towels this Labor Day Weekend. North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands is the place to relax into the quintessential beach holiday getaway. And while some might consider Labor Day Weekend the last of summer, summer temperatures linger in the Brunswick Islands throughout all of September.  So even if you miss Labor Day in the Brunswick Islands, you still have time for that last summer vacation to the beach.  But don’t wait too late!

Island Hop without a Passport in North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands

with five barrier islands, island hopping is a must when exploring North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands this summer! Located in the southernmost corner of North Carolina, the islands of Brunswick County are strung together with forty-five miles of silken coastline.

Graced with sunny, secluded beaches away from high-rises and crowds, each island provides its own unique character, charm and activities. Here, beaches are perfect for family vacations, reunions, weddings, surfers, nature enthusiasts, and golf getaways, and each island has something different to offer its visitors. It is impossible to pick a favorite, so vacationers should visit them all!

Sunset Beach

Old BridgeStart your island hop on the southernmost island at Sunset Beach for a peaceful and relaxing experience. You will find this island top of the list for a quiet and quintessential beach town as residents are passionate about preservation. Take a mile walk from the last beach access south to Bird Island and the Kindred Spirit Mailbox to learn about sand dune wildlife and experience the habitats of the beautiful coastal preserve. Don’t forget to also tour the Old Sunset Bridge Museum, home to the last pontoon swing bridge on the East Coast!

Ocean Isle

Next hop over to the seven miles of Ocean Isle Beach, where you will find something for every generation! Stroll along the shoreline, scan for signs of sea turtles or catch a wave with private or group surf lessons. To experience sea life with a life-size diorama and touch tank make a visit to The Museum of Coastal Carolina. If you are feeling adventurous, try ziplining through a 300-year-old swamp cypress canopy at The Shallotte River Swamp Park, which is a challenging and thrilling adventure for all ages!

Holden Beach

DSC_7135_HOLDEN BEACH BRIDGENamed one of the best family beaches in the U.S. by National Geographic Traveler magazine and voted one of the top 10 beaches by USA Today readers, Holden Beach is your ideal destination for small town charm. Cruise along the Intracoastal Waterway by kayak and enjoy a day “downtown” with lunch at one of the several restaurant decks overlooking the waterway and the many shrimp boats that call Holden Beach home. In this wildlife haven, your family will enjoy spotting dolphins and playfully chasing ghost crabs with flashlights in the evening.

Oak Island

Ten miles of uncrowded beaches with more than 60 access points, two fishing piers, two marinas and three public boat and canoe ramps makes the town of Oak Island a perfect stop. You will have just as much fun touring the town on bicycles with bells DSC_2743_CASWELL_LRand baskets while eating ice-cream as you will in the water! Include your four-legged family members as Oak Island is one of the top dog friendly beaches in the country according to Dog Fancy magazine.  Sharing the same island, Caswell Beach is a quiet, laid-back beach that is also convenient to the shops and restaurants of Oak Island.  Standing sentinel over its uncrowded mostly residential shores is the Oak Island Lighthouse, a tri-colored beacon reaching about 16 nautical miles offshore. Make an appointment in advance to schedule a climb to the top.

Bald Head Island

Finish off your island hop by secluding yourself from reality at Brunswick’s resort-style, no-cars-allowed, Bald Head Island, only reachable by ferry. Explore the unspoiled natural surroundings hiking, biking or by golf-cart. Bald Head Island is an eco-lover’s paradise with 10,000 acres of nature preserves and extraordinary wildlife. North Carolina’s oldest lighthouse, “Old Baldy,” and Smith Island Museum are favorite attractions for the vacationers!

There are a variety of accommodations for every stop on your island hopping adventure, so start booking your vacation today!

Pups Prefer the Beaches of North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands

many people consider their four-legged friends part of the family and love taking them everywhere they go. If you’re looking for a dog-friendly spot to bring Fido to this fall, the beaches of North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands allow man’s best friend to enjoy the sun and sand right along with you.

DSC_6536_DOG OAK ISLANDDog-friendly beaches open up a whole new world to explore for dog owners and their four-legged friends. Here are five Fido-approved activities to take part in while soaking up the sun.

  1. Running – Running is a favorite beach-time activity for many vacationers and our beaches offer the perfect setting for taking a jog with your dog. The packed sand along the water creates a great running surface your dog will enjoy just as much as you.
  2. Swimming – If your dog is a fan of the saltwater then taking your pup for a splash in the Atlantic will be a wonderful treat. Make sure you bring freshwater along for your dog as too much saltwater is unhealthy!
  3. Playing fetch – This activity can be done in the water or on land and is equally as fun for you as it is for your furry companion. Bring a flying disc or bouncing ball along for a great game that is sure to wear out you and your fur friend!
  4. Building sandcastles – Although this is a job better suited for hands than paws, your dog will enjoy helping dig holes to get to the optimal sand. At the end of your building endeavor, you can give your lovable pet the pleasure of destroying your work.
  5. Sunbathing – While you work on your tan, man’s best friend can get their own dose of Vitamin D by chilling out and enjoying the sun’s rays and cool breeze. They’ll be wagging their tales in no time! Just remember that dogs can get sunburned too – especially white and thin coated dogs.

Although all the beaches in NC’s Brunswick Islands are dog friendly, regulations may vary by town.Microsoft Word - Document1 You can check out all the rules and details here. If you’re also looking for pet-friendly accommodations, check out all the options on our website.

So if you’re looking for a new place to play fetch or spend quality time with your furry friend while enjoying a beautiful view, you can head to the NC’s Brunswick Islands. Dog friendly beaches and accommodations await you.

Get Hooked on Pier Fishing in North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands

for a fishing experience that doesn’t involve braving the high seas, pier fishing on one of North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands’ piers could be the answer to your desire to reel in a big catch. As the season starts to transition from summer to fall, the scaly swimmers that grace the waters around the barrier islands change as well with red drum, sea trout, mackerel and more.

Take a trip over to historic Southport to experience the quaint Southport Pier near the mouth of the Cape Fear River. This handicapped-accessible pier is a public facility and usage is free for all. Amenities include benches, a gazebo, swings and even ice cream during certain days of the year. Here you can hook a fish or even bird watch as the site is featured on the NC Birding Trail.

Families, competitive fisherman or amateur anglers can line up along the Ocean Crest Pier on Oak Island and reel in a king mackerel and many other species while enjoying a community live bait tank, an onsite weather station for optimal wind speed and air/water temperatures and a full-service restaurant adjacent to the pier.

IMG_8101 oak island pierAlso on Oak Island is the newly re-opened landmark, the Oak Island Pier, formerly known as the Yaupon Pier. With a new restaurant and tiki bar, the Oak Island Pier will provide any visitor with the ultimate pier fishing experience. Take a leisurely stroll along the pier for the views or reel in the catch of the day for a local dining experience. This pier is certainly a welcome return and a big catch!

The pier on Holden Beach offers a great perch to reel in your prize fish from. Selling daily, seasonal and three-day fishing permits and live bait, Holden Beach Pier is the place to be this fall. If you’d rather be a spectator to the sport, you can do so here for just $1.

Just down the way on Ocean Isle Beach, the Ocean Isle Pier offers equipment rentals and season pass sales along with ice cream, drinks, fishing bait and tackle and rods. Fishing fees are $9 per rod. Adult spectators are $1 and the fee is 50 cents for children under the age of 6.

DSC_1719_Sunset Beach_Bait Casting Pier_LRCalling all king fishermen – the Sunset Beach Pier is waiting for you! This 900-foot pier on Sunset Beach is a hot spot and includes top-notch amenities: a double sink at the cleaning table, a snack bar with breakfast and hot sandwiches, a game room and even an ATM in the air-conditioned pier house. Inside, you can purchase bait and rent a rod. Three-day, five-day and seasonal fishing passes are available and include parking.

In North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands, there are prized landmark fishing piers on four of the five islands. All are equipped with handicapped access, food, bait, tackle and rentals. And most importantly, residents and visitors will always be there to offer advice and encouragement for novice and expert fishermen alike.  So be sure to make pier fishing part of your next fishing or family beach vacation to North Carolina’s Brunswick Islands.