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Beaches

A Southern Resort-Like Setting 

The eight-mile-long stretch of Ocean Isle Beach is located on the southern coastline of North Carolina. In 1950, a developer bought most of the land and subdivided the island before adding concrete-walled finger canals along its length. Ocean Isle Beach is where Brunswick County's first high-rise buildings were constructed, and this coastal barrier island was incorporated as the Town of Ocean Isle Beach in 1959. 

Ocean Isle Beach was deserted until after World War II, when the Williamson family began developing it as a resort. Ocean Isle has mostly single-family homes, as well as a large condominium development at its west end. There are also several restaurants.

Ocean Isle Beach has a resort atmosphere, replete with restaurants, specialty shops, public tennis courts, access to all water sports (including pier fishing, swimming, surfing, etc.) and a water slide. There is also an airport that makes getting to Ocean Isle accessible by air, which facilitates much of the tourism. 

Ocean Isle is also near the heart of the South Brunswick County golf country. You can enjoy a game of golf at Brick Landing Plantation, then dine at the Brick Landing Coconuts Grill. Or, you can try your game at several other golf courses located in Brunswick County. 

If you're visiting in the fall, you'll enjoy the annual North Carolina Oyster Festival in Ocean Isle Beach. And don't miss the Museum of Coastal Carolina, where the life-sized replicas of fish and other sea life create a feeling of being under water. The Museum's Reef Room is believed to be the largest natural history diorama in the southeast. You'll see sharks, dolphins and game fish, as well as all types of crustaceans. Look for the remains of a shipwreck, dating from about 1800, on the "sea" bottom. Study Civil War artifacts, tidal exhibits, a display of shark jaws, wildlife dioramas including dioramas of the Green Swamp, and many other exhibits. In the Shell Room, you'll find more than 200 specimens of seashells. 

At the Ocean Isle Beach Water Slide, enjoy the views of the ocean before you plunge down waterslides into the pools below. Relax and have fun - lifeguards are on duty and refreshments are available. 

The Silver Coast Winery, just 15 minutes inland from the beach, is situated on 40 acres surrounded by woods. The Winery has been winning silver and bronze medals every year since its opening for its Seyval Blanc, Chardonnay, Rosé, and Premium Oak Chardonnay. Sample wines in the tasting room; tour the winery and learn about wine making; buy gifts for your friends and family (choose from a large selection of wine and gifts in the gift shop); enjoy an eclectic display of art from local artists; plan a private party, corporate event, wedding; or just enjoy lunch in the lovely gardens. The winery produces more than 5,000 cases annually. And don't forget their special events held each month, including Octoberfest to the Sweet Heart Dance to the Purple Feet Festival. 

Directions: 

Ocean Isle Beach is south of historic Wilmington on Hwy 17 and very close to the Myrtle Beach area. To get to Ocean Island Beach from Wilmington, follow U.S. 17 south. Take a left on U.S. 17 Business into downtown Shallotte. Then turn left (south) on N.C. 179, Old Georgetown Road, which becomes Brick Landing Road. Make a right (west) on Beach Drive to N.C. 904. Then take a left (south) to high-rise bridge. 

There are four area airports. Major airline service is offered through two - Wilmington International Airport and Myrtle Beach International Airport. Brunswick County is midway between both airports and about 45 minutes away from each. There are also two small airports in Ocean Isle Beach and Oak Island.