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Named one of the best family beaches in the U.S., Holden Beach offers island charm, natural beauty, and an endless variety of things to do. From watersports to wine tasting, beachcombing to biking, and everything in between, visitors can have as exciting or relaxing a vacation as they please when it comes to things to do in Holden Beach. After you’re done playing on our beaches, parks and waters, enjoy a taste of Holden Beach’s local flavors and fresh seafood at our selection of great restaurants. And, don’t miss out on getting to know the island natives—sea turtles, crabs, dolphins and other marine creatures—with activities such as turtle watching, crabbing, fishing, birding and more.
The eight-mile-long stretch of Ocean Isle Beach is located on the southern coastline of North Carolina. 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.
Find your favorite water creatures, from river otters and fish to sea turtles and sharks. It's fun for the whole family with tours and adventures, free programs, special events, scout programs, and more!
Did you know you can play pickleball in Holden Beach? Head to the multi-purpose court at Bridgeview Park for open play times on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.
Southport, renamed in 1887 but established in the 1700s as Smithville, is a half-hour drive from Wilmington, a short ferry ride from Fort Fisher, and the gateway to two true beach resorts: Oak Island and Bald Head Island.
Wilmington, NC has an abundant brewery scene and is only a 45-minute drive from Holden Beach. The Wilmington Ale Trail is an easy online guide to the local breweries, bottleshops, restaurants and bars.
Holden Beach has an all-new "Pirate Water Play" splash pad located on Davis Street along the Intracoastal Waterway. The splash pad includes several pirate-themed features, and the play area is perfect for kids to cool off on hot days.
Mermaid's Island Grill is a favorite Holden Beach restaurant. Famous for Maryland-style crab cakes, lemon chicken souvlakia, calabash shrimp and fresh-cut fries, Mermaid's Island makes everything from scratch and never freezes anything.
Located in historic Southport, over 100 regional artists showcase their work at the Franklin Square Gallery. The gallery also holds a series of workshops and lectures, as well as an annual show with judged by well known artists.
Lighthouse Gifts is a favorite Holden Beach spot for beachy souvenirs. Find great beach-themed t-shirts, candles, books, and other households goods.