The Outer Banks of North Carolina has a rich fishing history that dates back well before the Wright Brothers made their first attempt at flying off Kill Devil Hill. Thousands of vacationers flock to the narrow strip of barrier islands each year to relax, spend time with family and friends and go fishing.
From the 4x4 beaches in northern Corolla to the southern tip of Cape Hatteras National Seashore, the Outer Banks is one of the best spots on the East Coast for anglers. Fisherman flock to the area year round to go fishing and enjoy reeling in anything from red drum, striped bass, rockfish, bluefin tuna, and the list goes on and on.
While many vacationers prefer to spend their day fishing off a boat, others would rather be standing on one of the area’s many piers with their baited line, waiting for a hungry fish to grab onto their bait. The fishing landscape on the Outer Banks was changed forever when the island’s first pier – Jennette’s Pier – was constructed in the popular vacation town of Nags Head, NC way back in 1939.
The original, landmark structure paved the way for its predecessors that now line the North Carolina coast. A structure that was battered over the years by countless hurricanes and nor’easters, Hurricane Isabel smashed into the coast in 2003 and caused billions of dollars in damage to North Carolina along with neighboring states.
Isabel was to blame for severe flooding, immense beach erosion and the destruction of 540 feet of Jennette’s Pier – a storm that condemned the landmark structure. Following the devastating tropical storm, the North Carolina Aquariums division along with NC Governor Beverly Perdue and local officials and legislators worked together to come up with a more permanent rebuild of the devastated all-wooden pier.
The group agreed on plans to rebuild the historic Jennette’s Pier into an all-concrete, 1,000-foot-long center for fishing, event and education epicenter in the Town of Nags Head. Construction on the $25 million dollar pier began in mid-2009 and was completed about two years later with a grand opening ceremony on May 21, 2011.
Jennette’s Pier is a celebration of the OBX’s rich fishing history and the structures three wind turbines are a symbol for the area’s progress towards being environmentally friendly as possible. The pier is also dedicated to water conservation, and they recycle as much of their usable H2O as possible.
Area visitors should make a point to visit the attraction during their vacation and check out the indoor fish takes, take advantage of the NC Aquarium education programs, and pay the small nominal fee to walk to the end of the pier. And if you’re a soon-to-be bride, consider choosing Jennette’s Pier as your wedding ceremony or reception venue. Dozens of brides choose to do so each year at one of the most unique venues in the United States.
Don't forget about the fishing either! Anglers of all ages are encouraged to grab their fishing pole, load up their tackle box, and head to Jennette's Pier to partake in fishing at the newest pier on the Outer Banks. Before you, you can see what's biting by checking the daily fishing report on Jennette's Pier's website.
Hours of Operation
May through August: 5:00 a.m. till Midnight
April, September, October, November: 6:00 a.m. till Midnight
December through March: 8:00 a.m. till 5 p.m.
Fishing Rates and Passes
Adults: $12 (Day)
Children (12 and Under): $6 (Day)
3-Day Pass: $30
7-Day Pass: $65
Annual Fishing Pass: $275 (365-Day)
Two-Adult Annual Fishing Passes: $400 (365-Day)
Walk on Pier Rates
Adult Walk-On: $2
Children (12 and Under) Walk-On: $1
Equipment Rental Rates
Rod Rentals: $10 (Day)
Pin-Rigs: $3 (Additional Per Day)