Outer Banks Highlights

///Outer Banks Highlights

Outer Banks Highlights

Hello! Hello!

Last day to enter the Vega giveaway!

I’m finally getting settled back into normal life after some time at the Outer Banks last week.  I’ve lived in North Carolina for nearly 13 years now and had never been to that area.  It actually takes just as much time to get to Florida or Pittsburgh from where I live in the mountains.  North Carolina is such a WIDE state.

Luckily, the Hubs family decided to rent a giant beach house and I finally had the chance to go!  We had a big group, including six kids, so we needed all the space we could find.  We loved our location right on the beach path with ocean views.

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Most of our time was spent hanging out with family, cooking and moving between the beach and the pool.  All six of my nieces and nephews were there, so there was never a dull moment!  Instead of sharing the day to day stuff, I thought I’d pick out some of the highlights.

Spoiler alert: I saw WILD HORSES!!!

Wright Brothers National Memorial

I was the only person (other than the kids) who had never been to the Outer Banks before, so I wanted to make sure I saw some of the must-see sights including where the Wright Brother’s first flew.  Since the Hubs and I love aviation, I didn’t want to miss it.

Wright Brother's Memorial - Outer Banks

The memorial is on what seems like the only hill in the Outer Banks.  It’s where the brother’s practiced hang gliding before they used a powered plane.

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It’s a nice walk up to the top!  Can you imagine just flying off of this?

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The memorial was dedicated in 1932 and is a really pretty site.

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I wanted a clear picture, but was happy those clouds were keeping the climb to the top a bit cooler.

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At the bottom of the hill is the location where the brothers first actually flew.  The rocks mark the place where they took off and how long the first four flights were.  It was fascinating!

The most interesting thing I learned was that they used a rail for takeoff to the keep the plane from sinking into the sand.  It’s still there!

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As a pilot, the Hubs loved this!

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Inside the  museum there is a replica of the original plane.  I’d seen one before at the Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC.

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On our way back to the house we stopped at Booty Treats for some shave ice! <— Made me giggle just typing that… can you tell I spent the week with a bunch of boys? haha!

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It wasn’t exactly like Hawaii’s… but was still pretty awesome!

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Duck Donuts

My friend Marilyn highly recommended we get donuts at Duck Donuts on our trip.  I’m honestly not much of a donut fan, so I probably never would have done this if she hadn’t suggested it.  I’m so glad she did though!

One morning I gathered up some of my favorite men (and little men πŸ™‚ ) and found the closest Duck Donuts.  We had to wait in a line out the door, but it moved fast.  The fun of Duck Donuts is you get to watch the donuts come out of the fryer and then pick all of your topping combinations.  The options were nearly endless.

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The boys put me in charge and I came up with this array!  I can’t tell you how hard it was to get this picture before all those little hands dove in. haha!

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The whole concept of mixing and matching toppings is a lot of fun and the actual donuts were some of the best I’ve ever had.  So even if you aren’t a huge donuts fan like me, I still recommend a visit.

Family Outings

We went out to dinner a few times as a family, including to this super kid-friendly shark themed restaurant.  The kids had a blast!

Aren’t they all freakin’ adorable?  And can you believe how big Owen is?

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Probably the most fun family outing was Put-Put Golf!  Gatta love those summer nights.  Cue the music…

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Triple D Restaurant

My Father-in-law, the Hubs and I have a tradition of visiting a restaurant off the show Diners, Drive-ins & Dives on vacation.  I did some searching and found Coastal Cravings, which was featured on the show.  It was attached to a gas station, but was so good!

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This might have been the best lobster roll I’ve ever had!

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And the crab cake sandwich was legit.

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Wild Horses

Ahhhhh!!! I saw wild horses!

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When I got the Outer Banks I learned you had to go out to the 4WD area to see the wild horses.  Since I didn’t think it was a good idea to “borrow” my Father-in-laws nice, new huge truck to actually go four-wheeling I booked a tour to see the horses.

The Hubs and my sister-in-law Megan came along.

It was like another world in the 4WD area.  No roads, just sand, vacation homes and wild horses!

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It was like no other place I’ve ever seen.

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Can you imagine staying in this house with the horses to keep you company?

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I loved seeing all of the horses and also really enjoyed the landscape in the northern areas.

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I was a little afraid a tour would be cheesy and a waste of money, but I loved every minute.

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The Hubs and the tour guide had to pull me back on the truck because I wanted to just stay. πŸ™‚

Outer Banks 4WD Beach

Sadly, we had to cut the trip short due to those giant storm clouds.  The beach cleared out, it got crazy windy and started pelting huge stinging rain drops.  So needless to say, the ride home wasn’t as much fun as the ride out there…. but I’d still say it was worth the trouble.

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The three of us had a blast!

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Outer Banks Family Vacation 2016

What a great time with family!  It is so hard to get everyone together and we are all so blessed that it just worked out this year.  The entire trip came together at the last minute and all worked out so well.

Other highlights include vacation running and a yoga class on the beach with my sister-in-laws.  We saw dolphins playing in the water during lunges!  Megan loves dolphins even more than I do (which is a lot,) so that was a huge deal for us!

Here’s the clan!  A little more sun-kissed than when we arrived. πŸ˜‰

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Thank you so much for reading today!  See you tomorrow for those delicious stuffed portobello mushrooms.

I’m linking up with: Wanderlust Wednesday, Wanderful Wednesday, Happiness LinkupThinking Out Loud Thursday & City Trippin.

Your turn!

Have you been to the Outer Banks?

Any summer beach trip plans?

By | 2017-08-15T14:03:59-04:00 July 6th, 2016|Southeast Travel, Travel|34 Comments


  1. Jeff SWANN July 18, 2016 at 11:54 pm - Reply

    I think was one of my favorite posts ever .. I’m from Mars Hill always lived on NC and never been past Topsail Island.. growing up always went to Myrtle Beach but since about to turn 50 next year I’ve got to go to the Outer Banks in next few years and take mom.. love to see the wild horses and lighthouses for sure… thank you for sharing ..

    • JulieWunder July 23, 2016 at 11:59 am - Reply

      I’m so glad you liked it! I hope you get to go someday!

  2. Jess July 12, 2016 at 10:46 am - Reply

    Julie, we are just packing everything today and head there tomorrow. Thanks for the run down on some of the places you recommend. I want to see the wild horses! So nice you had your whole family there!
    jess xx

    • JulieWunder July 12, 2016 at 3:18 pm - Reply

      Hi Jess! I hope you enjoy it. It’s a really interesting place. I’ll be looking for your photos on Instagram. Safe travels!

  3. Mary Ellen @ VNutrition July 8, 2016 at 8:59 am - Reply

    Awesome pictures! I am so glad you got to see the wild horses and take pictures – they’re so cute!

    I spent a week in the outer banks with my husbands family a few years ago. We got a big house too. It was so fun, hopefully we can do it again soon. πŸ™‚

  4. Andrea on Vacation July 8, 2016 at 8:20 am - Reply

    This trip looked awesome- Donuts, lobster rolls, beaches, wild horses- what fun!

  5. Emily July 7, 2016 at 1:01 pm - Reply

    I love how you find the most unique places to visit. That trip to see wild horses would definitely be something on my bucket list. πŸ™‚ And I’m so thankful for the Wright brothers. My dad read a biography of them, and it was amazing to hear about their hard work and drive that went into working on flight! Wouldn’t they be amazed now? DONUTS!!! That pictures is channeling the inner kid in me.

    • JulieWunder July 9, 2016 at 11:36 am - Reply

      I know! Isn’t it crazy to even imagine you could fly at that time? They were such visionaries. Have a great weekend, Emily!

  6. Ruth July 7, 2016 at 12:45 am - Reply

    Whoa! Seems like you were living the good live during your visit to the Outer Banks. I feel all happy when I read about the area since it is so beautiful. I would love to see the wild horses. Glad you had the opportunity to visit.

    • JulieWunder July 9, 2016 at 11:28 am - Reply

      Haha! I try! I’m so glad you enjoyed the post. Happy weekend.

  7. Farrah July 6, 2016 at 9:12 pm - Reply

    Welcome back! πŸ˜› I’ve never been to Outer Banks (there’s so much in NC that I want to visit! :O!), but that museum sounds like fun, and hoorayyy for shaved ice! (I miss Hawai’i too…)

    Those horses!!! <3!!

    • JulieWunder July 9, 2016 at 11:27 am - Reply

      NC is a really cool place! So much from the mountains to the coast!

  8. Wow, how beautiful! It’s always the best to get to explore a place which isn’t so far but is new to you. Love exploring sand dunes, they are so fun! πŸ™‚

    • JulieWunder July 9, 2016 at 11:23 am - Reply

      I agree! This world is a magical place. Thanks for stopping by today!

  9. Van @ Snow in Tromso July 6, 2016 at 12:48 pm - Reply

    Wow these sand dunes already look incredibly without those mansions and the wild horses but what a truly amazing place that is! I wouldn’t mind to own a mansion on my own in that area, haha!

  10. Susie @ SuzLyfe July 6, 2016 at 10:50 am - Reply

    So much fun, and such indispensable family time. I loved our trip to OBX that we took last year. You all did a bit more exploring than we did (we stayed a bit more still), but I just loved the area, and I hope it isn’t my last trip!

    • JulieWunder July 9, 2016 at 11:12 am - Reply

      I get antsy sitting around… so I kind of made that stuff happen! haha!:-) I love to explore πŸ™‚

  11. heather @Lunging Through Life July 6, 2016 at 10:32 am - Reply

    What a fun time! I went to the Outer Banks for my aunt’s wedding and saw wild horses too. I couldn’t believe it! So fun. I love all of your outfits. Glad you were able to get away and have time with the family

    • JulieWunder July 9, 2016 at 11:12 am - Reply

      Wasn’t it cool?? I loved it too. I’m so glad we got to spend some time together.

  12. I have not been to the outer banks in like 20 years! I think I am the only one who is not on the donut train. They don’t do it for me at all.

    • JulieWunder July 9, 2016 at 11:11 am - Reply

      I honestly don’t normally like them at all… but these were really good donuts! Felt more like a dessert than breakfast though! Haha.

  13. Melanie {For Love and Travel} July 6, 2016 at 9:25 am - Reply

    Looks like a fantastic weekend!!! Love the shot of y’all with the horses in the back. That must have been a wonderful experience to see.

    • JulieWunder July 9, 2016 at 11:10 am - Reply

      It was amazing. I’m an animal lover, so it was right up my alley.

  14. Isabel July 6, 2016 at 8:34 am - Reply

    This is like the perfect summer holiday getaway! Everything from the food to the beach,you look so happy! <3 Thanks for linking up!

    • JulieWunder July 9, 2016 at 11:09 am - Reply

      Thank you so much Isabel! So nice to see you here today.

  15. [email protected] July 6, 2016 at 7:52 am - Reply

    I have never been to the Outer Banks and I live in Virginia Beach now so I gotta get there at some point. Sounds like a great wkend!

  16. Looks like a fun trip! I”ve never been to the Outer Banks but I’d like to go. I keep seeing all these cars around here with OBX bumper stickers and I’m always reminded that it’s on my bucket list.

  17. Blane Sherer July 6, 2016 at 6:55 am - Reply

    Love your travel blogs.
    This was especially nice.
    I think it was the family aspect of it.
    Until you go all the way out to the Outer Banks
    you really don’t realize how wide NC really is.
    Glad you got to see and to take pictures of the horses.

  18. Terri waller July 6, 2016 at 5:12 am - Reply

    Hey Julie, My husband and I love the outer banks!!! I am jealous, I have never been able to see the horses. What company did you go with for your tour???

    • JulieWunder July 6, 2016 at 9:27 am - Reply

      Hi Terri! It was really an interesting place and so different from the rest of the area. We went with Bob’s Wild Horse Tours… but I think they are all pretty similar. Ask if they have a coupon! They gave me a discount. I thought it was totally worth it if you don’t have your own 4WD to go out there.

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