Many think of the Outer Banks as a summer getaway, but the off-season is filled with a ton of fun activities to explore! Traffic disappears while the beach remains inviting, and there’s still plenty of attractions open. Keep reading to get inspired on what you can participate in as the seasons change:

Visiting in the Fall is awesome! Fire pits aglow and somores for the making. Oh, and don’t forget that gorgeous view from one of the upper floors of the water and breathtaking sunsets. It has been a few years, but I will never forget. Oh, and the most comfortable beds ever and afternoon wine…” -Kim T. 

  • Cozy up to the fire with a nice read, or participate in some fun family games!

Brooke Mayo Photography

  • Dine out! The Outer Banks isn’t completely closed down in the off-season, a good deal of restaurants keep their doors open year-round. Stop by Duck’s Cottage, Coastal Cravings, Roadside Bar & Grill, The Blue Point, or Aqua Restaurant for a bite to eat. Some restaurants even change up their menu, so if you visit your favorite restaurant you may find a few surprises!
  • Take a stroll by the shore! Our off-season weather may surprise you. The beach remains just as calming and inviting. We recommend catching a gorgeous October sunset!
  • Explore the Boardwalk. The Town Of Duck highlights the importance of the boardwalk for preserving the coast line and its surrounding nature in this video. Go on a nature walk and learn some pretty interesting facts about the Outer Banks. They say the shoulder seasons (spring and fall) are the best times to explore.
  • Grab all the deals– after its peak season is all over, OBX shops like Kitty Hawk Kites and Ocean Atlantic Rentals will offer discounts on experiences like hang gliding or rentals like golf carts! Make sure to take advantage of these deals for your visit.
  • Attend fun events! Whether its the holiday season, or you’re in town for a festival, plan your trip around one of these experiences:


Duck Jazz Festival: Drawing in thousands of jazz fans, this festival allows fans to enjoy the music while being immersed in the Outer Banks.

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Seafood Festival: ‘Eat like a local’- this event is your one-stop-shop for the best, authentic seafood! Held in Nags Head, the Seafood Festival features around 10-15 restaurants, breweries, and wineries to satisfy your taste buds.

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Outer Banks Food Truck Showdown: You read that right, food trucks will be lined up for your convenience! With live-music and entertainment, restaurants and breweries will be showing off for your taste buds. A can’t-miss event happening in November!

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Poulous Family Christmas: This annual show offers an impressive light display for all to enjoy. With over twelve weeks of preparation and thousands of dollars put into it, its easy to see why this is a beloved tradition!

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Winter Lights: This 22 night event is a must-see for everyone! Beginning November 25th, check out the twinkling lights at the Elizabethan Gardens on Roanoke Island. Image result for outer banks winterlights


Wright Brothers Celebration: The First Flight Society is hosting its 116th Annual Celebration of Orville and Wilbur’s first flight at the Wright Brothers National Memorial in December. Be a part of history as this monumental event takes place! Image result for wright brothers 116th celebration


Taste of the Beach: Located in Kill Devil Hills, this event spans over four days and includes bar crawls, seafood, and tapas tastings to truly give you a taste of what the Outer Banks offers!

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Our Facebook fans agree, off-season Outer Banks is where its at:

“The OBX is the best in the off season, no traffic, the beach is wide open (sand isn’t hot), weather is perfection!” -Melissa C. 

“Walking on an uncrowded beach!” -Liz B. 

OBX Off season. Solitary beach walk along clean cold ocean waves. What better sunrise sound. Steamy hot tub in crispy cool air.” -Denise H.

“Snow on the beach in January!” -Wendi C. 

Staying at The Sanderling Resort last December!” -Jennifer T.

“Getting married to the love of my life at the Sanderling on the beach almost two years ago in the off season!” -Lisa F.

“No traffic, more of a small town then.” -Brian A. 

My favorite activity would be an afternoon walk after relaxing all morning.” – Shauntee A. 

Coconut crunch coffee ☕️ from Duck’s Cottage and walking the beach in a sweatshirt 😍” – Katy B.

“Letting our dog enjoy the beach, peace and quiet, no crowds!” -Natalia A.

“Getting to know people that live there all year long while experiencing uncrowned restaurants, beaches, and tons of other fun activities.” -Margaret V.

“Peace…calm… solitude” -Heather G.

“The Spa is everything” -Sangi C.

“Quiet cool beaches, sweatshirts, hot tub on cold days!” -Rhonda G.

“So much to enjoy and experience without waiting in line for Lighthouse climbs or Whalehead Club tour or traffic and uncrowded walks on the beach from morning sunrise to evening moonrise!!” -Daniel M. 

“Chilly beach walks!” -Dana D.

“The beaches are always wonderful!!” -Anne M.

Almost no people, and no hot sun and temps – that’s what I love about OBX in off season.” -Julie S. 

“We watched baby sea turtles hatch late one night on the beach with my young son within walking distance of the Sanderling Inn. Unforgettable!!” -Erin R.



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About Sanderling Resort

Oceanfront Luxury. Toes in the Sand. Romance. Natural Beauty. Casual Elegance.


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