Foodie Outer Banks Trip Planner
Where can you find the freshest seafood on the Outer Banks? How about the best frozen yogurt after a hot day on the beach? Or maybe you'd like to sample the finest local wines?
Look no further. Seaside Vacations' Foodie Trip Planner is perfect for food lovers and brimming with insider restaurant recommendations. From raw bars and seafood joints to upscale bistros and drive-ins, delight your taste buds with our unique cuisine and southern hospitality.
You'll find that the cuisine of the Outer Banks is every bit as diverse as the landscape and an Outer Banks vacation allows you to see more (and eat more) along the way. So hit the road (but come hungry!) for these seven excellent recommendations.
DAY 1: JOHN'S DRIVE-IN
Famous for its milk shakes and dolphin boats, John's Drive-In has been an Outer Banks institution for years. This tiny shack on the beach road in Kitty Hawk serves delicious sandwiches, hot dogs, burgers and mahi-mahi with the fish crispy-fried alongside crinkle fries. Dogs love this drive-in too. If your pooch waits patiently in the car, the worker behind the window probably will provide him or her with a free "puppy cup" of soft-serve vanilla ice cream. Even if you don't have a pup waiting, you're going to want to try some of the ice cream for yourself.
DAY 2: THE OUTER BANKS BREWING STATION
The first wind-powered brewery in the United States, the Outer Banks Brewing Station is one of the best on the Outer Banks. With great food, great service and fantastic brewed beer, they're often a winner at the annual OBX Taste of the Beach competition. From fresh seafood and salads to appetizers and sandwiches, Outer Banks Brewing Station is a great place for brunch, lunch or dinner and you can often enjoy live entertainment. Want to experience their award-winning cuisine and brews for yourself? You can find them at milepost 8.5 on the bypass in Kill Devil Hills.
DAY 3: THE SURFIN' SPOON
After a long day at the beach, head on down to a little spot called the Surfin’ Spoon on the Beach Road (Rt. 12) in Nags Head. Owned by local pro surfer Jesse Hines and his wife, Whitney, this ultra-hip frozen yogurt shop is the quintessential small beach town spot. Surfin' Spoon is a casual surfer themed location with delicious frozen yogurt flavors, toppings, and a game room for the older kids. Plus, Seaside Vacations Guests can receive 10% off their frozen yogurt purchase!
DAY 4: WINE TASTING
Red, white or sparkling... whatever your preference, your foodie getaway isn't complete without a sampling of our award-winning wines. Try a wine tasting at Trio where Seaside Vacations guests can receive a free $10 Wine Station Card to sample wines! Trio has a simple, elegant, and immediately comfortable environment. Known for their unsurpassed selection of specialty cheeses, flavorful brews, and delectable wines, Trio in Kitty Hawk is certainly a favorite hangout spot for locals and area visitors alike.
For local wine made right here in the Outer Banks, visit Sanctuary Vineyards just a few miles across the bridge (in Jarvisburg) for some local flavor in a VIP wine tasting. This VIP tasting features tastings of reserve and library wines in special stemware, paired with a selection of NC cheeses and is great for guests coming into the Outer Banks or for a mid-week outing. Plus, Seaside Vacations guests can receive a FREE VIP Wine Tasting at Sanctuary Vineyards!
DAY 5: RESTAURANT FARE IN YOUR RENTAL HOME
Going out can be fun but there are times you might not feel like going anywhere! If you prefer to enjoy delicious dishes without venturing out to the restaurant, you will love Chefs on Call by Red Sky Café! Chefs on Call will cook for you in the comfort of your own vacation rental home. Red Sky Café is well known as a premier caterer on the Outer Banks, so whether you’re looking for someone to provide food for a special event or you just want to enjoy a gourmet meal at home, Chefs on Call is perfect for you! They will travel South all the way to Hatteras or North all the way to the 4x4 beaches. With offerings from grilled mahi mahi to shrimp & grits, Red Sky Cafe has dozens of menu options to choose from so you can pick your perfect menu. Plus, Seaside Vacations Guests can receive 10% off their Red Sky Café Chefs on Call order!
DAY 6: TORTUGAS LIE
Nestled among the dunes of the Outer Banks town of Nags Head, you'll find a delicious slice of the Caribbean known as Tortugas Lie. Founded in 1989, Tortugas' is home to some of the beach's finest fare, from mouthwatering appetizers to dinners and desserts so delicious you can't help but come back again and again. Why not come on in and see exactly why this quaint little Outer Banks restaurant is not only a local favorite but also the destination for hungry vacationers year after year. Plus Guy Fieri filmed a segment for Diners, Drive Ins & Dives here, so you know it’s good!
DAY 7: BLUE MOON BEACH GRILL
Located in Surfside Plaza at milepost 13 in Nags Head, the Blue Moon Beach Grill is a quirky, fun and delicious dining experience. They provide southern comfort food with a creative twist and flair. Their goal is to provide a “once in a blue moon” experience, and they never fail to achieve this. Visit for lunch or dinner or stop by for evening cocktails. Enjoy buffalo shrimp and seared sea scallops, crab cakes and fried oysters or mahi mahi BLTs and burgers! No matter what you will order, you'll enjoy it so much that you'll want to come back to try something else!
OBX Taste of the Beach
If you find yourself on the Outer Banks in March, be sure to check out the Outer Banks Taste of the Beach. The Outer Banks Taste of The Beach Weekend is a fantastic way to sample the fare of several fine restaurants on the Outer Banks in one fun-filled, food-centric weekend! This 4-day fun food festival event features wine tastings, cooking classes, special menu presentations, brewery tours, tapas crawls, cook-offs, dine-arounds, oyster roasts, fish fries, and many more fun foodie activities on the Outer Banks. It involves over 50 restaurants!
Outer Banks Restaurant Week
Each spring and fall, visitors to the OBX get to experience Outer Banks Restaurant Week. A great way to get out and enjoy Outer Banks dining without the crowds of summer, Outer Banks Restaurant Week gives local food enthusiasts and visitors an opportunity to enjoy 3-course lunch and/or dinner menus at a pre-fixed cost offered by several participating restaurants. Sample a variety of dishes at a great cost!
Keep in mind, this is just a small sampling of the amazing cuisine that you can find on our beautiful beaches. The Outer Banks offers amazing food in every town! To learn more, read our blog about how the Outer Banks is a foodie's paradise!