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Victory Beach Vacations: Carolina-Kure Beach NC Vacation Rental Houses & Condos
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Check out the area we love so much!

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Every visitor will most likely discover the area’s top attractions, restaurants, shopping venues and more while on their many trips to Wilmington and our Island beaches. However, if you are one of those visitors who likes to get off-the-beaten path to find the unexpected things to see and do, these trip ideas are featured just for you.
Cool & Quirky
Music Lovers Unite
Shoppers, No Brands Found Here!
Pirates – Argh!
Coastal Hauntings
Snakes Alive!
Ride the Rails
Venus Flytraps
Hermit Bunker
Shop Shabby Chic & Beachy Unique
Loggerhead Sea Turtles
Barrier Island
The Diminishing Republic
Mailbox on the Beach
Scuba Diving
Tee it Up
Disc Golf
48 Hour Itinerary
Graystone Inn
With its barrier island beaches and historic riverfront town, Wilmington, NC, is a destination of contrasts where you'll find well-known attractions such as the Battleship NORTH CAROLINA, Fort Fisher State Historic Site, Airlie Gardens, historic homes, museums and parks. In contrast, other attractions explore our quirky side. For instance, did you know about our ghost walks, haunted pub crawls, surf/SUP camps, pirate cruises, secret mailbox by the sea, and places to see carnivorous plants, endangered sea turtles, sharks, alligators, poisonous reptiles, and prehistoric creatures? And don't forget our 400+ movie/TV credits.
Even the history of the region is intriguing. The Cape Fear River, which winds its way through Wilmington, was named by early explorers when their ships ran aground and sank due to dangerous shifting shoals where the river meets the sea. Today these wrecks afford amazing diving and fishing opportunities.
Sundown Concert
Music lovers can take advantage of free concert series, like the Downtown Sundown Concert Series in Wilmington, the Boardwalk Blast at Carolina Beach, Boogie in the Park at Kure Beach and Summer Concert Series at Wrightsville Beach Park, every week throughout the summer. Relax under the broad branches of the Airlie Oak as the area’s premier musicians perform at the Airlie Gardens Concert Series. You can also dance on the sand at the Carolina Beach Music Festival. The Pleasure Island Seafood, Blues & Jazz Festival features two days of non-stop musical acts and an array of culinary seafood delights in the fall.
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Cotton Exchange in historic downtown Wilmington
Wilmington’s river district shopping isn't defined just by shopping malls or big box retailers. The highest concentration of unique boutique shops can be found at one place, The Cotton Exchange, featuring buildings in constant occupancy since the pre-Civil War decade. Eight graciously restored buildings connected by brick walkways, open-air courtyards, and gigantic heart pine beams house 30 unique specialty shops and restaurants, each a charming reflection of the style and feel of Wilmington’s 19th century working port days.
Located at the southern end of Wilmington's river district, the century-old building at Chandler’s Wharf contains an eclectic mix of galleries and shops with works of art that are unmatched in Wilmington. Find everything from cutting edge clothing, art to ceramic sculpture to original paintings and prints.
The Black Cat Shoppe in the river district is a store of inspired gifts! The store features cool kid stuff, pirate booty, zany & unusual nostalgic toys, humorous pop culture novelties, souvenirs, pranks, One Tree Hill memorabilia, and much more.
Edge of Urge is a boutique for men and women specializing in handmade and independent designer clothing, shoes, jewelry and accessories. Edge of Urge strongly supports handmade, “Do-it-Yourself,” innovative and creative thinking. They have introduced many up-and-coming designers, as well as more established designers, to bring a matchless collection of favorite things including the locally-made “Freaker,” a-one-size fits all beverage insulator that features stylish, knit designs.
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pirate and kids
Did ye know that pirates were among Wilmington and our Island beaches' earliest visitors? Aye, it's true! At the Children's Museum of Wilmington, kids can dress like pirates and role-play aboard the Ahoy Wilmington! ‘pirate ship.' Kids will also enjoy Wrightsville Beach Scenic Tour's Pirate Island Treasure Hunt tour to a small barrier island that was once popular with pirates. At the NC Underwater Archeology Center at Fort Fisher, you can see real artifacts from shipwrecks and vessels that sailed along our coast during the era of pirates such as Stede Bonnet.
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Eerie Battleship
Local actors lead nightly ghost walks with tales of ghosts and hauntings in Wilmington, a city considered to be among the most actively haunted in the world. In fact, "Ghost Hunters," a paranormal reality series on the Syfy network listed Wilmington’s Battleship NORTH CAROLINA in their Top 25 Halloween picks of all time. Staff reports seeing solid walking shadows with silhouettes of people, phantom voices, moving shadows and the overwhelming feeling of being watched or followed.
Are you curious for more? Guides traverse 275-year old alleyways littered with stories of poor lost souls that still linger in the storied Port City. Check out the Ghost Walk of Old Wilmington, a family-safe, 90-minute journey that meets on the Riverwalk at the foot of Market and Water streets. At St. James Church, they'll tell you about Samuel Jocelyn, who came back to tell friends he'd been buried alive. Two centuries later visitors claim they have seen a shadowy figure leaning on a tombstone near Jocelyn's grave. Some believe it is his ghost still haunting the grounds of St. James Cemetery, one of the most haunted cemeteries in the state. If you’re over 21, the Haunted Pub Crawl meets weekend nights to explore legendary pubs. There's also a Haunted Cotton Exchange Tour.
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Cape Fear Serpentarium snake
The Cape Fear Serpentarium features 100 species of snakes (most of them venomous) and other reptiles from around the world. Among them are gaboon vipers, king cobras, Australian taipans, blue krait, a 23-foot python, and green and black mambas. The serpentarium also features a large collection of bushmasters, the rarest venomous snakes. Owner/snake breeder Dean Ripa holds the distinction of surviving multiple bushmaster bites, which kill approximately 80 percent of victims, even with anti-venom treatment! Visit the Cape Fear Serpentarium and see for yourself.
railroad museum
The Wilmington Railroad Museum rests directly across from where the original Atlantic Coast Line Railroad used to port. In 1840, this railroad was the longest continuous rail line in the world. This museum is great for engineers both young and old and allows you to tour a real life-size caboose, boxcar, and 100-year-old steam locomotive. Learn about the history of the development of railroads in the Wilmington area and the careers of famous people who were involved with railroads, such as Thomas Edison and George Pullman.
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Venus Flytrap
Did you know that Venus flytrap (Dionaea) grows naturally only within a 75-100 mile radius of Wilmington? This remarkable plant’s bristly leaves form a trap that closes when an insect crawls onto the leaf. Blooming in May, the Venus Flytrap Trail at Carolina Beach State Park showcases this remarkable plant. The trail’s half-mile loop also features other indigenous carnivorous plants such as the Bladderwort and Pitcher Plant.
The renowned Fort Fisher State Recreation Area’s hermit (Robert E. Harrill) lived in an abandoned World War II-era bunker near the Cape Fear River along a salt marsh for 17 years, from 1955 until 1972. He became a hermit in 1955 at the age of 62. People heard of and came to visit the “Hermit” to listen to his philosophies and imparted wisdom throughout his stay there, and today you can still see the bunker he made into a home on the recreation area’s 1.1-mile trail. There have been many documentaries and numerous articles written about 'the Hermit of Fort Fisher' including a live stage production.
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Night out at the Ocean Grill & Tiki Bar
The Barbary Coast is Wilmington’s oldest bar. Located in the historic river district, this hot spot features a jukebox with over 10,000 songs and the patio overlooks the Cape Fear River. For an evening of billiards and brews, visit Orton's Music and Billiards, America’s oldest pool room since 1888. Enjoy a view of the Cape Fear River at Reel Café. The Throne Theater features some of the biggest and brightest acts of yesterday, today and tomorrow.
For a nightcap or glass of vino, check out the upstairs lounge of the Caprice Bistro Restaurant & Sofa Bar. The Fortunate Glass Wine Bar focuses on wines from all regions, from some of the best boutique and cult wines to everyday values that work with any budget.
Stop by the Fat Pelican in Carolina Beach, complete with a walk-in beverage cooler and giant surfing cow on the roof. Check out the assortment of decorations, including the dinghy renovated into an outdoor bar. The Ocean Grill & Tiki Bar in Carolina Beach, named as one of the best beach bars in the U.S., serves up fresh seafood and live music with ocean views.
Wrightsville Beach offers a vibrant nightlife scene. No matter what your after-dark style, this coastal community has options ranging from beach bars and waterfront restaurants, local hot spots and everything in between. Take in the panoramic views of the Intracoastal Waterway at Bluewater Waterfront Grill. Watch as boats cruise past your table and relax to the sounds of live music from local and regional bands during their summer music series on the outdoor patio. The Oceanic provides great outdoor seating with an ocean view and also sets the stage for seasonal outdoor music.
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Video Thumbnail - vimeo - Go With the Flow....Shopping Historic Wilmington
Bring the shabby chic and beachy unique design style back home with you as a vacation souvenir by shopping at one of our many stores that feature this form of inspiration, vintage accessories and furnishings, and décor ideas for your home! Whether your thrill lies in airy pastel linens or distressed wooden furniture statement pieces, Wilmington offers many chic shopping boutiques with something new and original every visit.
A bright, oversized purple chair will lure you into Thrill of the Hunt, specializing in antiques and consignments. Stop in The Shop of Seagate for one-of-a-kind pieces and full monogramming and embroidery for a personal touch. Close to Wrightsville Beach, Airlie Moon combines vintage finds with crisp linens, bath accents, clean candles and hand-milled soaps. Need one-stop shopping to find multiple gifts for all occasions? Visit Blue Moon Gift Shops, voted “Best Gift Shop in Wilmington” housing a myriad of gifts from over 100 artists, craftsmen and retailers. Locals shop at The Ivy Cottage for exclusive finds, voted “Wilmington’s Favorite Consignment Shop” and the largest antique and home décor shop in the southeast housed in three cottages. Inspired by the sea, find a treasure at Crabby Chic including coastal home furnishings and decorative accessories, where art and sea stars are a decorating staple. Dragonflies offers children’s clothing and baby gifts with personal and southern charm. Vintage shop ‘til you drop, but before you do, save time for one last stop at Uptown Market, a premier merchant marketplace offering 12,000 square feet of all that is authentic, coastal, and one-of-a-kind from farm tables to artisan jewelry and more!
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Loggerhead Sea Turtle
Did you know that Loggerhead sea turtles visit Kure Beach between mid-May and September? This threatened species is protected by the Endangered Species Act. The North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher is an excellent place to see a live baby sea turtle. Each year, the aquarium nurtures a handful of hatchlings that have been rescued from doomed nests and then releases them the following year. The Aquarium also studies Loggerhead migration patterns. The Pleasure Island Sea Turtle Project ensures the preservation and protection of threatened and endangered sea turtles, and is comprised of volunteers dedicated to the protection of all sea turtle species. During nesting season (May 1 - August 31), volunteers monitor from the southern end of Kure Beach to the northern end (including Freeman Park) of Carolina Beach.
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Father and son on beach
Accessible only by boat, Masonboro Island off Wrightsville Beach is a North Carolina Coastal Reserve and National Estuarine Research Reserve System rich with wildlife. The largest undisturbed barrier island along southern North Carolina’s coast, coastal birds flock to their natural habitat here and dolphins can be seen enjoying the area on a calm day.
Crossing the iconic drawbridge from the mainland into Wrightsville Beach, visitors can look off towards the northeast and see a sandbar known by locals as “The Diminishing Republic,” complete with a fake palm tree and parking meter. Some claim it is maintained by a “secret society of locals” that show up when the treetop needs replacing. Boaters often anchor there on either side of the low tide to temporarily inhabit the island, which slowly disappears as the water begins rising toward high tide. The treetop is the only visible part of “The Diminishing Republic” at high tide. See if you can spot it!
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Mailbox on the Beach
On Wrightsville Beach, there is a special mailbox where people pour their hearts out to complete strangers in the sand dunes on the north end of the beach. There is no name on it and the Post Office doesn’t pick up or deliver to the box. People can write letters to clear their conscious, place them in a mailbox, but never have them sent. The mysterious mailbox somehow stays stocked with paper, pens, and stories from visitors sharing their fondest beach memories year after year. The current mailbox is the second mailbox located on Wrightsville Beach. The first mailbox was a landmark on the north end of the island for 11 years and the hundreds of notes left in it can now be found on display at the Wrightsville Beach Museum of History.
Scuba diver by reef
For the inquisitive diver, Aquatic Safaris operates two USCG certified custom dive boats that run daily dive charters to wrecks and ledges off Wrightsville Beach. In the latter part of the Civil War, three ships were sunk off Wrightsville Beach within days of one another and lay within 300 yards of each other near the south end of the island.
Wilmington Municipal Golf Course
A municipal golf course designed by one of the world’s most influential golf course designers is a rare thing. The Wilmington Municipal Golf Course was designed by Donald Ross in 1926 to provide the public with a quality, championship 18 hole golf course at affordable prices. This gem is a must play when in town.
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Disc Golf
The area boasts two 18-hole disc golf courses. The Joe Eakes Park course in Kure Beach features a unique terrain of sand and oak trees. This course is 18 holes with the longest run at 500 feet, great for seasoned players as well as new ones. The Northern Regional Park course is mostly wooded but not too tight and the front "9" makes good use of elevation. There's also a free nine-hole course open to the public behind Good Hops Brewing Company in Carolina Beach.
Jungle Rapids
Between the river and the sea, a bounty of great experiences and attractions await in Wilmington’s midtown. From Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park, to historic Airlie Gardens, to shopping villages including Mayfaire Town Center and Lumina Station and more, midtown has something for everyone to enjoy. Read More
Short trips require less planning and less time off than an extended vacation. There’s plenty here to keep visitors busy for days on end, but this itinerary should get you started if you have just 48 hours. Read More

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Nothing if Not Intentional
Travel with kids, foster care, and cargo bikes
Nothing if Not Intentional 2014
The Ultimate Beach Packing List — Make your next family trip to the beach the best one yet!
April 10, 2014 Rachael
In this post, you’ll find both an essential beach packing list and some fun things you never dreamed you’d take on your beach vacation! You can find the free printable versions of both lists at the end of the post.
The fact that memories from our last family beach vacation still haunt me doesn’t mean I’m not daydreaming about our next trip to the ocean. I need sunshine, warm weather, and salty ocean water! I want to play in the sand with the kids, read a magazine, avoid the piles of laundry, take a break from fixing meals, share my love of travel with my kids, and soak up the extra family time.
We have no solid beach vacation plans right now, but for those of you who do, I thought I’d share some of the things that make our family beach vacations less-stressful and more fun.
What to pack for the ultimate family beach vacation. Free printable list that includes 16 things you never dreamed you'd take to the beach.
Beach Packing List for the Ultimate Family Vacation:
16 things you never dreamed you’d take to the beach.
Quick note: by no means do I think you NEED all of these things! They’re just ideas and suggestions; pick and choose what works best for your family.
The amazon affiliate links will help you learn more or show a visual example of certain products. If you purchase through our links, we get a small portion of the proceeds at no additional cost to you. Thank you for helping to finance our future vacations! With your help, this blog may earn enough for a trip to the beach in approximately 3-15 years. 😉
Beach tent. We managed our first beach trips with babies just fine without a tent. But then we borrowed a baby beach tent when our second daughter was born, and it was life changing. She slept in her shaded little tent while big sister played in the sand. They also make beach tents big enough to shade the whole family! All you need are a few misting fans, and you’ll have your own little beach cabana.
Free printable packing list for the ULTIMATE family beach vacation.
Beach toys that do double duty. Kids don’t really need toys at the beach; however, if you bring a few tools or toys, make them justify the luggage space by serving multiple purposes. That dumper or digger that your child plays with at home will do a great job carrying sand loading seashells, and hauling water at the beach! Bath toys (this sea creature set is cute!) are waterproof and usually small and portable. Inflatable beach balls can be rolled around a hotel room and (as the name implies) played with at the beach.
Flat Bed Sheet. When we rented a house at the Indiana Dunes, the owner suggested we take one of the flat sheets to the beach and use it as a blanket. Keep in mind that if luggage space and weight is an issue, a sheet is bigger and lighter than a beach towel. If you’d like to upgrade your blanket, check out this sand-free mat that allows sand to pass through but not come back up! Cool, right?!
Small umbrella. Not all hotels/houses/resorts offer beach umbrellas, and those that do may offer them for a fee that you’re unwilling to pay. A small, collapsible umbrella is good not just for the rainy days but also for a bit of beach shade.
Silverware or plastic picnic utensils. Save your coffee cup and your spoon and offer it to your tot at the beach. Toddlers love to dig, scoop, and poor! Sure, buckets and shovels are nice, but (in a pinch) your used plasticware (read: trash) make great toddler sand and water tools. Just remember to take the trash off the beach when you leave.
Ice Cream Containers. Another great thing to upcycle and take to the beach is an ice cream container. When we fly, we pack these containers full of snacks that we don’t want smashed or spilled. At the beach, the ice cream containers are then used to haul water or build sand castles. Also, you could fill them with clean(ish) water and let little ones rinse off their hands and feet in the buckets before they eat or snuggle up with you on your beach chairs.
Taking the kids to the beach? Check out this post to know what to pack!
Mesh laundry bag or hamper. These hampers fold flat and weigh practically nothing, so they’re a great addition to your suitcase. At the beach, use them to corral wet, sandy toys or towels.
Coast Guard Approved Life jacket. A life jacket may not be the first thing to cross your mind when you pack your beach bag, but some hotels (like the one we stayed at in Puerto Rico) require them if you plan to play in the pool. These puddle jumper life jackets have worked really well for us.
What to pack for the ULTIMATE family beach vacation. With free printable list that includes 16 things you never dreamed you'd take to the beach.
For more ideas for how to make your beach trip a blast without adding to the price tag, check out this post: 35 FREE Things to Do at the Beach with Kids!
Kite and frisbee. Two other toys that are inexpensive and small are kites and frisbees. We’ve had a ton of fun with our little Dollar Store kite. Unfortunately, we lost our cool ring frisbee in the ocean. Lesson learned! We should have taken a frisbee we picked up for free or super cheap instead!
Beach vacation packing list
Jars and bags to collect your “souvenirs.” If you’re going to a beach where collecting sand and shells is allowed or encouraged, pack a jar or container to take home these nature-made souvenirs. Once you get back home, turn them into memory jars like Paging Fun Mums did here!
Ocean books and coloring pages. These are definitely not essential. But, after playing all day at the beach, it’s fun for kids to read about the ocean before bed or color an ocean picture while waiting for dinner at a restaurant.
The ultimate packing list for the best family beach vacation!
Plastic ziptop bags, All it takes is for one little sandy hand to reach into your bag for a snack and your lunch, magazine, and electronics could end up covered with water or destroyed by sand. Destroyed by sand? Isn’t that a little dramatic? Not for us. Sand ruined a camera for us at the beach! We now keep our lenses and extra equipment in sealed bags. A waterproof camera case like this can be good for point and shoot cameras.
Plaster of Paris. I’ll admit that I haven’t tried this one. But the rumor is that if you bring plaster of Paris, you can use it to make footprint souvenirs. Click here for the tutorial.
Cornstarch. Cornstarch is awesome for getting sand off of legs and bodies. Rub a little on the legs and feet, and the sand will wipe right off. Baby powder works too.
A beach-friendly baby carrier. We’ve tried taking a stroller to the beach. Oh, how we’ve tried! But usually our stroller ends up being a glorified luggage rack, since strollers don’t roll well on sand. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. It’s nice to have a place to park your things. But for long walks on the beach with a baby, I recommend a beach-friendly baby carrier like this one.
You probably won’t get very far, but in a pinch a towel can work too. 😉
The ultimate packing list for the best family beach vacation.
Of course some people never attempt the beach without a beach cart!
An empty wipes container to hide your valuables. See the how-to here.
For more ideas and tips for taking babies to the beach, check out this post! Baby Beach Bum: Tips and Ideas for Taking Babies to the Beach.
Packing List for Family Beach Vacation:
Beach Basics
The following is a list of items we consider our beach essentials!
Sunscreen/sun protection (including swimsuits with UV protection)
Swimsuits and swimsuit cover ups (a jacket if it’s windy/chilly)
Wipes (even if your kids are out of diapers, it’s nice to have wipes for older kids and adults to use to clean their hands)
Hand sanitizer
Bugspray–sand flies are the worst.
Waterproof (and sandproof) cases for phones and e-readers
Sippy cups and water bottles
Snacks (for parents and tots)
Cooler and ice packs–honestly, we don’t bring a lot of cold items to the beach, so a backpack or grocery bag works fine for our snacks. But a cooler may work best for your family!
Lotion and aloe
Sandals/water shoes
Beach Towels
Beach chairs–if you’re not going to a resort where chairs are provided, you may want to bring your own. Camping chairs are a space-saving option.
Hair ties
Conditioner–our girls have a LOT of hair. With chlorine, saltwater, and sand, a bottler of leave-in conditioner is definitely a necessity for our family!
Wet Brush–these brushes do the best job with gently tackling tangles. See note above for why we consider these necessities!
Reading material
Pacifiers and loveys for babies
Swim diapers (we like the reusable options)
Diaper cream
Battery-operated fan. Nice for sleeping babies and tots!
What to pack for the ULTIMATE family beach vacation. With free printable packing list that includes 16 things you never dreamed you'd take to the beach.

You can download the complete list here! Free Printable Packing List.
Not sure which beach to visit? You can read our tips for cruising with kids and taking children to all-inclusive resorts or our reviews of our family trips to Jamaica, Puerto Rico, and the Indiana Dunes. You’ll also find tons of ideas on our Travel with Kids Pinterest board!

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Food & Dining
The Only Beach Vacation Packing List You Need
Most people hit the beach for 3-7 days when they get to go. Sometimes it’s a weekend trip or sometimes you’re lucky enough to rent a house for an entire week. Instead of dreading that last minute packing frenzy, here is our SB Beach Vacation Packing List, which allows you to be done packing a full day in advance, all in one suitcase. Impossible? No, ma’am, it’s not!
Beach Vacation Packing List

If you plan your wardrobe out in advance, you are far less likely to overpack or forget a key wardrobe item behind. Preferably, try on the items you would like to pack two weeks in advance. If it’s for Spring Break, just consider this your seasonal “what fits” time that we all have to go through. Try on your white jeans, white tees, dresses, skirts, bathing suit and coverups. Look them over carefully and make sure that white tee doesn’t need to be replaces (it likely does!).
If you need to purchase anything, you’ve got two weeks. If you are down to only three days out … far better than three hours out!
Before we go into actual outfits, remember these travel necessities, but also know a drugstore is never far away:
Travel size toiletries
Stain remover wipes
Feminine hygiene needs
Medicines if needed
Download, borrow or buy a good beach book
Consider leaving sunscreen and magazine purchases for the beach
Two days before your trip, we got a packing list from Tina Adams Wardrobe Consulting:
Stick to mostly neutrals. You can add a pop of color with jewelry or a pashmina.
Use versatile pieces that serve double duty, like a tunic that is a coverup by day and a going out top with white jeans by night.
Leave high maintenance pieces at home, like silk tops that need to be ironed.
And here’s a biggie: no more than 3 pairs of shoes. They are heavy and take up way too much space in your suitcase.
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Beach Vacation Packing List
So here’s what goes in the suitcase:
2 swimsuits, and if they are 2-pieces, make sure the bottoms coordinate with the tops so you have even more options
2 tunics and/or 2 sundresses (to total 2) that will serve as coverups by day and going out pieces by night
3-7 pairs panties and 2-3 bras, depending on washer/dryer availability
2-3 pairs of gym shorts (if you plan to work out), depending on washer/dryer availability (remember, you can rinse in the sink!)
2 t-shirts and 3 tank tops
2 going out tops, like a sparkly tank and a linen camp shirt
One pair shorts, preferably white
One fun skirt, preferably white
White jeans
Light sweater or jacket
1 pair flip flops
1 pair trainers or athleisure shoes + socks
1 pair wedges
A colorful statement necklace
Gold hoop earrings
A floppy hat that folds in your suitcase
Toiletries & incidentals (Make travel size toiletries from drug store containers.)
Make sure to pack electronic chargers.
Assume a hairdryer is at your hotel/rental house, but you may want to check!

Beach Wear
Remember, your tunic serves double duty as your coverup. Add an oversize white shirt or a white sundress for a second coverup because it will match any suit you own! All the tops here coordinate with all the bottoms, so you get twice as many looks.
Day and Evening Looks
Beach Vacation Packing ListSave
For your daytime and evening looks, pack one pair of white jeans, white Bermuda shorts, a white skirt and a white tank top. These neutral pieces will form the backdrop for little pops of color, like a fun necklace and a bright pashmina. Keep your shoes neutral, too (flip flops for day and a pair of wedges for evening), so they won’t compete with your fun pops of color. Your tunic/coverup will pair nicely with any of the white bottoms, and for a bit dressier look throw on a sparkly, but neutral, top or blouse. And carry your clutch for a sleeker nighttime look.
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The only other bag you’ll need is a tote. Here’s what goes in it:
Your book
Travel snacks
Sunglasses in case
A clutch for evening, and inside your clutch goes your wallet
You may want to pack your pashmina in your tote as well, for a cool flight.

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Elements of Classic Coastal Style
Crisp whites and marine blues, nautical accents and tailored furnishings combine for classic coastal appeal
Rebecca Heane August 23, 2012
After 14 years of living in Western Australia, I returned home to Falmouth, Cornwall,... More
Click "Embed" to display an article on your own website or blog.
What is classic coastal style? Think French Riviera meets the Hamptons. The look is sophisticated: crisp linens, perfectly painted beadboard, bold stripes and a distinct palette of whites, neutrals, blues, charcoal and black. Classic coastal style uses beautiful accessories, such as specimen shells, coral, maritime instruments and coastal art, and it aims for a clean, sophisticated feel.
You don't have to live by the sea to get a coastal look for your home. Just by putting a few tips into practice, you will feel like you've got the ocean on your doorstep. Classic coastal is easy to achieve — keep it simple and edit ruthlessly to get this look.
Beach Style Living Room by Penguin Random House, LLC
Penguin Random House, LLC
Light neutrals and stripes
Painting the whole room in varying shades of white makes a great background for showing off soft furnishings and accessories. Use striped fabric — particularly widely spaced stripes — for upholstered furnishings to create an instant coastal look.
Beach Style Living Room by Liz Williams Interiors
Liz Williams Interiors
Paint your fireplace surround and alcoves in neutral shades to create a great backdrop for displaying specimen shells, coral and coastal art. A limed or weathered oak coffee table completes the look.
Traditional by The Lettered Cottage
The Lettered Cottage
Wall art
Gather nautical or coastal images in a specific theme to hang on your walls. You might choose photos classic yachts in black and white and mix in some closeups of rope, a ship's bell and other maritime accessories. Frames can be bought really cheaply from discount stores or from your local flea market, auction house or eBay. Paint them, lime-wash them or just use a mix of different woods for a well-weathered look.
Beach Style Home Office by Garrison Hullinger Interior Design Inc.
Garrison Hullinger Interior Design Inc.
Window coverings
Roman blinds always look smart. I often have them made with a mitered border to add definition — try matching the borders with the paint color of your walls. This deep indigo instantly says classic coastal.
Beach Style Bedroom by Richard Bubnowski Design LLC
Richard Bubnowski Design LLC
Simple linen curtains are perfect for this look. To create more impact, use a white pole and put a contrasting border on the curtains to complement the walls and soft furnishings. You also can use a striped fabric with a plain border to give definition.
Beach Style Bedroom by Mary Prince Photography
Mary Prince Photography
Shutters are a great option for a timeless look. When painted in a neutral color, they won't detract from a fabulous view.
Contemporary Living Room by Studio Marcelo Brito
Studio Marcelo Brito
Furniture styles
Revamp a piece of furniture by painting it — use a strong color to make a bold statement. This deep blue creates a perfect backdrop for model yachts.
Beach Style Living Room by Garrison Hullinger Interior Design Inc.
Garrison Hullinger Interior Design Inc.
An ottoman provides extra seating for visitors and also works as a base for a lovely display of shells and coral.
Traditional Family Room by Tara Bussema - Neat Organization and Design
Tara Bussema - Neat Organization and Design
This traditional Chesterfield leather suite is softened with a mix of fabrics in ocean colors. Crisp linens and soft velvets in a coastal palette work well with the life-buoy wall art. Shells give the classic chandelier a twist. Rugs in bold, monochromatic stripes ground this room.
Contemporary Living Room by Studio Marcelo Brito
Studio Marcelo Brito
Traditional and elegant furniture styles and layouts work best for the classic coastal look. Slipcovers are a great idea for sofas and chairs — white or cream always looks upscale, or you can mix it up with some stripes as well. Experiment with contrasting piping to match your wall color for a sophisticated look.
Contemporary Living Room by RGN Construction
RGN Construction
Beadboard — known as butt and bead in the United Kingdom — is a decorative wood paneling often used in coastal homes. It's easy to install and you can get it in sheet form. Here, crisp white paint keeps the look simple.
Traditional Bathroom by Bilton Design Group
Bilton Design Group
Use beadboard as wainscoting in a bathroom to give it a nautical feel.
Tip: An easy way to work out wainscoting height is to divide the height of the room into three, then cut your boards to two-thirds the height of the room. This will ensure that the wainscoting is perfectly proportioned and easy on the eye. Finish it off with decorative molding and a coat of oil-based eggshell emulsion for durability in a wet area.
Traditional Sunroom by Olga Adler
Olga Adler
Natural flooring, such as coir, seagrass and sisal, make great rugs. This rug looks very effective against the dark timber floor.
It would be very easy to give this room the classic coastal treatment — simply swap the green paint for deep blue, change the cushions for stripes to complement the wall color and add a few well-chosen accessories. That coffee table looks perfect for a display of shells and coral.

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Outfit a Beach House From Deck to Drawer Knobs
Make your livin' easy with these hand-picked products, paint colors and materials for a coastal-style getaway
Laura Gaskill May 27, 2013
Houzz Contributor. I cover topics ranging from decorating ideas, product picks, Houzz... More
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Whether you are in the process of fixing up a beach house or dream of owning one, this ideabook is chock-full of ideas for fixing up your getaway. Here you'll find products, ideas and color schemes, from outdoor showers and wraparound decks to paint colors inspired by the sand and sea.
Beach Style Patio by Butler Armsden Architects
Butler Armsden Architects
The best beach houses exude an easy outdoor-living vibe, and that means decks, and lots of them. If you are renovating a beach house, surrounding it with decking is a must.
Go with teak for a classic look that will weather to a faded gray over time, or choose hard-wearing composite decking.
Beach Style Outdoor Wall Lights And Sconces by Design Within Reach
Design Within Reach
Deck Light | Design Within Reach - $425
Classic nautical-style outdoor light fixtures look right at home on beach houses of all kinds. This one from Design Within Reach is stunning and would work equally well indoors.
Mediterranean Outdoor Lighting by Etsy
Copper Metal Outdoor Light - $39.99
This adorable copper outdoor light provides plenty of beach chic for less than $40.
Beach Style Living Room by Siemasko + Verbridge
Siemasko + Verbridge
Think flexible, open and easy. If your current setup has many small rooms, consider working with a pro to tear down a few walls and open up the space.
Modern Carpet Tiles by FLOR
Side by Side Carpet Tile - $13.99
With salt, sand and damp towels, the floors of a beach house take quite a beating. Avoid wall-to-wall carpeting, which will only drive you nuts — instead, consider carpet tiles where you want a bit of color and softness. They are stain resistant, and you can replace each one as needed.
Modern Ceiling Fans by Ceiling Fan Universe
Ceiling Fan Universe
Emerson Electric CF765 60-Inch Loft Ceiling Fan - $249
A great fan (or two or more) is a must in a sultry climate. Swap wobbly, noisy old ceiling fans for sleek new models like this gorgeous and extremely powerful version from Emerson Electric.
Contemporary Pendant Lighting by IKEA
Maskros Pendant Lamp - $49.99
A statement light fixture is a fun touch, especially in a great room with high ceilings. This pendant light from Ikea is a designer favorite yet costs only 50 bucks.
Paint by Sherwin-Williams
Sea Salt SW6204 Paint
When it comes to selecting paint colors, allow the landscape outside your windows inspire you. Sea Salt from Sherwin-Williams is a lovely pale blue-gray reminiscent of misty morning light at the beach.
Traditional Paint by Benjamin Moore
Benjamin Moore
Camouflage 2143-40 Paint
A classic sandy neutral like Camouflage from Benjamin Moore won't steer you wrong.
Beach Style Kitchen by Rethink Design Studio
Rethink Design Studio
Crisp white walls and ceilings make the perfect backdrop for colorful art collections, and a tiled floor feels delightfully cool on hot feet.
Beach Style Pendant Lighting by Candelabra
Regina Andrew Apple, Saucer and Cigar Jute Pendants
Woven materials and natural fibers are a perfect fit with seaside homes. Jute, sisal and sea grass rugs are an inexpensive and always-welcome touch, but I especially love these jute pendant lights. Hang one or a cluster over the dining table.
Modern Wall And Floor Tile Contemporary Floor Tiles
Contemporary Floor Tiles
These slate tiles are stunning and practical. Put them in the entry, in the kitchen or throughout the entire living area.
Traditional Kitchen by Plato Woodwork, Inc.
Plato Woodwork, Inc.
A beach house is a natural draw for weekend guests, and it's inevitable that everyone ends up in the kitchen. Keep yours open with easy-access open shelves and glass-front cabinets, and include an ample island.
Kitchen by ShelfGenie National
ShelfGenie National
If it seems there is never enough pantry space when you are feeding a crowd, consider devoting an extra corner of your kitchen to food storage. Pullout pantry shelves like the ones shown here keep everything neat and accessible.
Eclectic Bathroom Sinks by Fixture Universe
Fixture Universe
Kohler Brockway Wash Utility Sink
A triple sink like this one from Kohler would be just the thing to keep little ones from tramping through the house without washing up.
Modern Tile by Island Stone
Island Stone
Muir Beach Shower
You can't go wrong with glass tile in Caribbean blue paired with a simple glass shower in the bath. Just remember that if little ones are frequent guests, you might want to also have a tub in one of the guest baths — otherwise they are bound to end up using the master tub.
Eclectic Towel Bars And Hooks by Anthropologie
Eight-Arms Hook - $48
This octopus hook from Anthropologie is on the pricey side, but it would add a lot of bang for your buck in a small bathroom.
Contemporary Mosaic Tile by The Home Depot
The Home Depot
Solistone Anatolia Honed Agate Natural Stone Pebble Mosaic - $13
This gorgeously textured pebble mosaic tile would look amazing in the master bath.
Contemporary Bedroom by Andra Birkerts Design
Andra Birkerts Design
Painted floors feel fresh and calming in the bedrooms. They're also a great cost-saving trick for covering imperfect wood floors.
Paint by Wickes
Matte Aqua Paint
This pale aqua would look amazing on the floor of a beach house bedroom with white walls and airy white curtains.
Beach Style Hall by Rethink Design Studio
Rethink Design Studio
A great budget trick for carving out extra sleeping space is hanging curtains. They give each guest privacy but maintain a fun, carefree camp atmosphere. Perfect for hosting a large clan.
Modern Pendant Lighting by Shades of Light
Shades of Light
Deck Stripe Shade Pendant Light - $159
A good classic striped pendant light like this is just the thing in a guest room or child's space.
Modern Paint by Mythic Paint
Mythic Paint
Sunny Side Up Paint - $6.99
As vibrant as the sun shining outside, this warm yellow paint would cheer up a tiny guest room or den.
Contemporary Cabinet And Drawer Knobs by Etsy
Jute Rope Knot Knob by Kris Krafting - $7.50
Swap out boring old knobs with these jute rope knots for a quick upgrade that can change the look of an entire room.
Farmhouse Patio by Shannon Malone
Shannon Malone
A proper outdoor shower is a beach house essential. If you have the space, a full walk-in shower with hot and cold water is a luxury worth splurging on.
Beach Style by The Orvis Company
The Orvis Company
Outdoor Shower - $325
A great budget option is a freestanding outdoor shower like the one shown here — just hook it up to a hose and go.
Traditional Balcony by Frank Shirley Architects
Frank Shirley Architects
Whenever you have the choice, add more ways to get outside — French doors and sliding glass doors from each bedroom leading to the deck are a lovely touch.
Beach Style Exterior by Don Duffy Architecture
Don Duffy Architecture
Tell us: Do you have a beach house or dream of owning one?
Guides and homes: Find your own coastal style

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Wilmington Wine & Food Festival
Website -
Send them an email -
Bellamy Mansion, 503 Market Street
Wilmington NC 28401
Primary - (910) 251-3700
The Wilmington Wine & Food Festival will give you the opportunity to experience exquisite culinary pairings from top area chefs and their notable wine selections. The weekend kicks off on Thursday with a Toast of the Town VIP event, followed by a Bourbon & BBQ Derby Cocktail Party on Friday serving up traditional Southern BBQ, while local mixologists vie for your vote for the favorite cocktail of the evening. The Corks & Forks Grand Tasting on Saturday features over a dozen restaurants from the Cape Fear region and 150 wine distributors from around the world. Enjoy the Bubbles, Brews and Street Eats event on Sunday with live music, local breweries, food trucks and sparkling wines. You won't want to miss this chance to enjoy the area's unique culture and history while advancing your appreciation for great wine and food!
Admission: Tickets range from $10 - $60 based on event chosen.

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WILMINGTON — The piers that dot the Carolina shores can be an anglers dream, but what to fish, and where, can be tough to know. Port City Daily has compiled a list of who’s catching what in our “Weekly Pier Fishing Report.”

Kure Beach Fishing Pier
Chopper Blue Fish at Johnnie Mercers Pier
A big chopper bluefish caught off Johnnie Mercers Pier. (Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)
Woody Murphy of the Kure Beach pier is reporting a continued solid bite of “chopper” (big) bluefish. These chopper blues are averaging in the “8-10 lb. range”, and are biting everything from “Gotcha!” plugs to cut bait. Cut bait refers to the practice of using cut pieces of dead fish as bait.
Murphy reports the first king mackerel of the season has been caught, weighing in at 22.44 lbs. The king took a live bluefish fished on a “king rig” off the end of the pier.
According to the Avalon Fishing Pier website, “a king rig is a two rod system used with live bait to catch bigger fish off a pier, namely king mackerel and cobia.”
According to Murphy, there is still a good bite of small false albacore in the early morning hours. These fish are being caught on live bait fished on king rigs.
Kure Beach Fishing Pier is open April 1-Nov. 30, and costs $8 per person with a one rod limit. King fishing is open from May 15-Oct. 1 from 5 a.m to sunset, and costs $16 per person with a 3 rod limit.
Shark fishing is open June 1-Sept. 15 from 12 a.m. to 5 a.m., and costs $16 per person with a 3 rod limit.
Kure Beach Pier is located at 100 Atlantic Ave., Kure Beach, NC 28449. For information contact (910)458-5524, or visit its website at
Carolina Beach Fishing Pier
The Carolina Beach Fishing Pier is reporting a strong bluefish bite, with the occasional chopper blue thrown in.
Fisherman are reporting a good bite of Virginia mullet, or “whiting” as they’re known mixed in as well.
Carolina Beach Fishing Pier is located at 1800 Carolina Beach Ave., N. Carolina Beach, NC 28428. The Pier is open 24 hours a day, pricing for fishing varies. For more information call (910) 458-5518, or visit its Facebook page.
Johnnie Mercers Fishing Pier
Joey Jacobs Albacore
Joey Jacobs landed a 17 lb. false albacore off of Johnnie Mercers Pier this morning. Pictured: Drew Cohn (L), Joey Jacobs (C), Mike Kruse (R) and Buck Fisher (Back) (Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)
Local angler Drew Cohn from Johnnie Mercers Fishing Pier in Wrightsville Beach is reporting a great bite this week, with the majority of the action coming in the early morning hours. Chopper blues are being caught consistently in the 7-11 lb. range, with a few larger fish being mixed in.
chopper blue off johnnie mercers pier
Pier anglers Drew Cohn and Jamie Neal with a nice chopper blue. (Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)
Cohn said that “if you’re out here by 7 a.m. with a ‘Gotcha!’ plug, the chopper blues will be biting.” In addition to the chopper bluefish, local angler Joey Jacobs landed a big false albacore this morning, weighing in at 17 lbs.
“The strong wind coming from the southwest always brings on a good bite in the spring,” Cohn said, “in the fall you want the northwest wind to blow.”
Rumor has it the king fish are beginning to show up. Mercer’s pier angler Bob Fish told Port City Daily a friend of his hooked up on a king just off Topsail Beach, and said “he caught a couple more right after that.” Angler Mike Kruse reports anglers trolling within 10 miles of Wrightsville Beach have reported king fish being caught as well.
Virginia mullet continue being caught by anglers fishing along the bottom.
Johnnie Mercers Fishing Pier is located at 23 E Salisbury St, Wrightsville Beach, NC 28480 and is open 24 hours a day. Typically the cost $8 per rod per day to fish on the pier. For king fishing, it is $24 per day for a three rod setup.
For more information call (910) 256-2743, or visit its Facebook page.
Surf City Ocean Pier
Jackson Lore of the Surf City Pier in Topsail Beach is reporting a solid catch of chopper bluefish this week, with action being reported at all hours of the day. Lore said the bait of choice has been “Gotcha!” plugs.
In addition to bluefish, Lore also reports a good bite of Virginia mullet throughout the day.
A 'Gotcha!' plug like this was used to land a 15.5 lb false albacore this week
‘Gotcha!’ plugs like these have been anglers go to baits for chopper blues off area piers (Port City Daily photo/CORY MANNION)
The Surf City Ocean Pier is located at 112 South Shore Dr, Surf City, NC 28445. The pier is open 24 hours a day from mid March – Dec. 1, and costs $10 per rod to fish for anglers over 11 years of age. For children 10 and under, the cost is $5 per rod.
For king fishing, the cost is $30 per day.

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Be inspired by our places long before you arrive.
Trip IdeasTrip Ideas
Sometimes a vacation almost plans itself, but other times you need a little inspiration. Search family-friendly itineraries for museums and pirate hideouts. Take a road trip through our military history. Or explore adventurous ways to enjoy our great outdoors. Browse our trip ideas by place or interest, and you’ll soon be mapping out a trip you’ll never forget.
A Girls’ Getaway to the North Carolina High Country
A Girls’ Getaway to the North Carolina High Country
Gather your best girlfriends for a trip that will leave you all rejuvenated, thanks to the epic scenery and activities in the mountains.
Get planning »
Cruise the Waterways of North Carolina
Cruise the Waterways of North Carolina
Go boating along the Intracoastal Waterway to visit coastal spots such as Beaufort, Jacksonville, Wilmington and the Brunswick Islands.
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Watch Nature Come Alive When Biking in the Mountains
Watch Nature Come Alive When Biking in the Mountains
Seeing the season take shape in the mountains is breathtaking, and the speed at which you ride helps you take it all in.
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The Ultimate Trip for College and Pro Sports Fans
The Ultimate Trip for College and Pro Sports Fans
Our state is home to iconic college teams, pro basketball, football, hockey and racing, and sports museums and halls of fame you can visit year-round.
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April 23, 2017
Fort Fisher Military Recreation Area
118 Riverfront Road
Kure Beach, NC 28449
(910) 458-8434
Rescheduled from October 2016, the 23rd Annual Pleasure Island Seafood Blues & Jazz Festival features live music by Grammy Award winning bluesman Jonny Lang. Held at the Fort Fisher Air Force Recreation Area in Kure Beach, this event will provide music that can’t be beat and locally prepared seafood is simply the best in the region. Coolers and pets are not allowed, but bring your chairs, towels and blankets for a great day of music and seafood at the coast.
Please note that the festival will return to the original October dates for the 24th Annual Pleasure Island Seafood, Blues & Jazz Fest
Time: 10:00 AM
Price: Tickets from October will be honored. Other ticket info TBA
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