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Old 02-23-2007, 10:53 PM
 
Location: NC
2,303 posts, read 5,180,983 times
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I've lived in the Carolinas my entire life and I've only been to two beaches--Myrtle and Topsail Beach just outside of Wilmington. I loved Myrtle because sometimes I need to be around the commercialism and the crowdedness...and I absolutely love Topsail because it's so quiet...I went in October and while it was starting to get chilly, the ocean water was still warm enough to put your feet in. And you could see the stars at night (something I don't even see much of around here anymore) and even dolphins
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Old 02-24-2007, 05:23 AM
 
Location: Asheville, NC
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Depends on what you are looking for.

If you are trying to get to truly great beaches and want to get rid of at least some of the tourist traffic, rent a house on Ocracoke Island in the Outer Banks. I used to go there quite a it as a kid, and have just recently started going back - it's definitely changed (made more upscale), but it's till a sleepy island village for the most part. It's just a free ferry ride from the south end of Hatteras Island. The town is very walkable, and pretty small. Nice shops, a handful of good restaurants (The Back porch - upscale, Howard's Pub - bar food, etc.). The best thing about it, in my opinion, is that most of the tourist traffic is during the day, so by early evening, town quiets down, and you have it essentially to yourself. It's even better if you go in the Spring or Fall, when it really feels like you have the place entirely to yourself.

The beaches there were ranked #2 in the country last year, I believe. There are some that can be accessed from the main road into town, but the best ones need 4-wheel drive access. If you really want to get some neat views, rent a kayak and paddle the sound (non-ocean side water). The wildlife is truly spectacular - especially if you are a bird watcher.
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Old 02-24-2007, 07:03 AM
 
Location: Yorktown, VA
50 posts, read 192,768 times
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We enjoy Cape Hatteras, NC. It's much calmer than Nags Head to the north, but not as calm as Ocrakoke. Rentals for cottages run from about $1000 per week up to about $10,000 for the biggest beachfront homes in peak season. We usually manage to get a soundfront home for $1500 or so per week. It is beautiful and relaxing. It's only a 15 minute ride (or less) from anywhere on Hatteras to the beachfront and there's lot's of public access. With our 4WD, we really enjoy driving out on the beach and finding our own spot. We like to hit the beach early in the day, and we've had times in Jun/July when we've had an area the size of a football field to ourselves up till about 10am. It gets busier, to be sure, and during certain fishing seasons, it's wild, but, it's amazingly beautiful too.
Water conditions can vary tremendously, and it does tend to be on the rough side. People with little children have to be extremely careful because rip currents are a problem. The 4wd area typically has no lifeguards.
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Old 02-24-2007, 07:47 AM
 
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Pawley's Island, SC. I don't know if I should tell you this, becuase I'd kinda like to keep it to the family but Pawley's Island has a lot going for it. It's got quiet, beautiful beaches and Mrytle Beach with all the entertainment hustle and bustle you could want is just 30 minutes north up US 17. If you join the "arrogantly shabby" crowd at Pawley's Island you may never go to another beach again. Our family has been going for 2 weeks every August for the past 15 years. That is one of the reasons we are looking to move from MD to NC. We want to be closer to Pawley's Island but not quite as hot as SC.

Hope this helps!
BTW, we rarely see jelly fish and the water is very tame.
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