2 Apr 2021
When you think of visiting the beach, you are probably picturing bright, sunny days out by the ocean. While there is nothing like a sunny beach day, your fun doesn’t have to end just because the moon has come out. In fact, there are dozens of awesome activities you can try after dark both indoors and out! Here are our 7 favorite things to do on the OBX when the sun goes down:
Go Ghost Crab Hunting
Ghost Crab “Hunting” is the perfect activity for kids. If you’ve ever walked along the Outer Banks coast, you’ve probably noticed little crabs popping up from small sand burrows and darting across the beach. These creatures are Atlantic Ghost Crabs. While you can spot them during the day, they are definitely more active at night so grab a headlamp and some flashlights for the kids, head down to the sand, and try to spot a crab before it scurries away!
Throw a Frisbee
Who said tossing a Frisbee has to be a daytime sport? Throwing a Frisbee on the beach is an activity that can be enjoyed by both kids and adults. Simply purchase a light-up Frisbee online or from a local sporting goods retailer and take it out on the sand! You can buy a variety of colored discs with LED-lights or even buy glow-in-the-dark Frisbees. Just remember to factor the wind into your plans—a calm evening is preferable because a windy evening could mean a lot of time spent retrieving runaway frisbees.
Warm up your singing pipes and practice your go-to karaoke song because you can experience a little bit of nightlife even when you’re on vacation! There are plenty of restaurants that are open late serving great food, cold drinks, and a side of entertainment. While live music and comedy shows make for a great outing, karaoke is a really fun way to spend an Outer Banks evening with friends. There are several DJs in the area that host karaoke at various locations so no matter what town you are staying in, you can probably find a karaoke night near your rental home!
The Outer Banks is one of the best places on the East Coast for fishing. Whether you prefer to cast a line off the pier, from the shore, or on a boat, you can easily do all three while you’re here on vacation. Plus, fish are always biting, no matter the time of year. One activity you'll really enjoy is night fishing. Once the sun starts to set, it isn’t uncommon to see anglers heading out to the now less-crowded beaches where they won’t have to worry about swimmers or surfers getting tangled up in their lines. Plus, many larger species (like sharks or drum) feed later in the evening increasing your chance of reeling in a great catch. Consider booking an overnight fishing charter or head out on one of the many piers—most are open late into the evening. If you do go out on the beach to try nighttime surf fishing, be sure to take flashlights or headlamps and be careful near the water!
Have a Bonfire
What’s better than eating a roasted marshmallow beside a crackling bonfire as the ocean waves are splashing against the shore in the background? Beach bonfires are a perfect way to end a summer evening because they provide an ideal setting for you and your family to just relax and enjoy each other’s company. Beach bonfire laws in the Outer Banks vary by town but are allowed in Nags Head, on Hatteras Island and on Ocracoke Island with a permit and under certain conditions. Learn where you can have a beach bonfire here. If you aren't sure where to get supplies, a lot of local grocery stores and gas stations carry bundles of wood so you don’t have to worry about finding the trunk space to haul it from home.
Get Ice Cream or Froyo
During a hot summer evening, there is no treat quite as refreshing as a few scoops of your favorite iced treat! From Corolla to Ocracoke, there are dozens of delicious ice cream shops and frozen yogurt stands to choose from. From hand-scooped classics and soft-serve to milkshakes and banana splits, there is no shortage of options for the cold dessert lover in your group. You can even find frozen custard and slushies! As a bonus, when you stay with Seaside Vacations, you’re eligible for 10% off your froyo purchase at OBX Frozen Yogurt which has a storefront in Duck and Southern Shores!
If you love gazing up at the stars and the moon, try going out on the beach after dark. Take a blanket, lay out on the sand, and just look up towards the sky—you will absolutely love the view. Due to a low level of light pollution and the geographic location of the island coastline—which goes on for miles—you should be able to see almost every constellation in the sky, especially on a clear night. You might even see a shooting star, meteor shower, or a rare moon. This is another great activity for kids who are interested in astronomy or could be the perfect way to end a romantic evening with your significant other. To get an even better view, bring along a telescope!
No matter how you choose to spend your evenings on the Outer Banks, we know you'll have a blast! Start planning your next coastal getaway at one of our amazing rental homes!
About the Author: Jessie has been coming to the Outer Banks since she was just 5 years old. She loved it here so much that she finally relocated in 2018. Now her mission is to show the world that the Outer Banks is an incredible place that everyone should experience. When she isn't working, you can find Jessie hanging out with her friends, chilling at home with a good book, or discovering a new Outer Banks adventure.