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Old 04-11-2012, 07:52 AM
 
57 posts, read 248,510 times
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I was hoping to get a bit of help from the experts on some questions/suggestions I have for the OBX area. We are coming down for our first vacation with a few other families to the Corolla area (Corolla light to be exact). I have been looking around at some website for things to do and wanted to get any feedback from anyone who may have some insight. Thanks in advance.
1- Is Corolla light a good area for a family vacation? From what I can gather it appears to be a "resort" type of area. Just wondering if there are any better options. We like the idea of the community activities, which is why we went with it.
2 - Is Corolla a family friendly area. We originally looked at Duck and Corolla but decide on Corolla due or the restaurants and kids activities (golf, etc).
3- We have also been looking at some other non-beach activities and wanted to see how feasible these are. They appear to located in other coastal areas so not sure with traffic, etc if they are worth the ride.
a) Whale head club
b) kayak tours - are there any in the Corolla area?
c) Dolphin watch in Kitty hawk - how far out is this from the Corolla area?
d) Currituck Beach Lighthouse - worth the trip?
e) Jockey Ridge park - Nags head. Again is this a long ride from Corolla?
Any other feedback or local secrets would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 04-11-2012, 02:02 PM
 
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1- Is Corolla light a good area for a family vacation? From what I can gather it appears to be a "resort" type of area. Just wondering if there are any better options. We like the idea of the community activities, which is why we went with it.

Corolla is very nice, and pretty expensive. Apart from what is up in that area pretty much nothing else. To get anywhere from Corolla you have to drive back down to Kitty Hawk area which is where the majority of shopping restaurants etc are. In the season this drive can take an hour or more due to traffic and it being a 2 lane road.


2 - Is Corolla a family friendly area. We originally looked at Duck and Corolla but decide on Corolla due or the restaurants and kids activities (golf, etc).

Yes and no. It is really more exclusive than anything, but the beaches are less crowded up there as a bit south. Honestly the closer to Kitty Hawk you are the easier it is to get to many of the activities listed below. But regardless it is a nice area. Again once you get up to Corolla or Duck you pretty much stay there unless you want to deal with horrible slow traffic and rubber neck drivers. I have friends that work up that way and hat e the drive in the summer.

3- We have also been looking at some other non-beach activities and wanted to see how feasible these are. They appear to located in other coastal areas so not sure with traffic, etc if they are worth the ride.

a) Whale head club,,,, very cool restored building, beautiful overlooking the sound. The NC Wildlife Commission also has a very nice (and free) facility in the same little park, well worth checking out.

b) kayak tours - are there any in the Corolla area? Not sure about in Corolla I know one used to be up there but down in Kitty Hawk, KDH/ Nags Head area several. Good fun and well worth doing.

c) Dolphin watch in Kitty hawk - how far out is this from the Corolla area?
Agasin very fun but dependent on weather and if the dolphin are there.

d) Currituck Beach Lighthouse - worth the trip? It is in the same park as Whalehead Club and Wildlife Museum in Corolla so if you are there why not

e) Jockey Ridge park - Nags head. Again is this a long ride from Corolla?
Yes especially in the summer. But Jockeys Ridge is very very cool. One of the few places you can learn to hang glide in relative safety and the dunes are great, kite flying etc.

I go out there a lot for work and our family goes up that way. We tend to not go to Corolla as it is so isolated. I would recommend looking at a place to rent in the Kitty Hawk area. That way you are pretty much in the middle of the island and can spend a day in Corolla if you choose, kind of ok been here done that and the kids might like it a tad south where there is more to do(literally most of the activities you mentioned. Just in the summer that section from KH to Corolla is a pain as you get lots of retires who stay out that way and drive really really slow and nowhere to pass. Last time I made the drive in the summer it took us over an hour to make the drive one way.

If you have your heart set on Corolla the one thing I would say definitely do is either the 4wheeler or horseback tour of that end of things. The road literally ends just past Corolla.



Any other feedback or local secrets would be greatly appreciated.[/quote]
Fly kites at Jockeys ridge, big new fishing pier in Nags Head and head over to Roanoke Island. Manteo waterfront is great. Roanoke ISland Festival Park is cool and The Lost Colony Outdoor Drama worth it.

Food Mama Kwans and Tortugas Lie great fish tacos
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Old 04-11-2012, 03:06 PM
 
57 posts, read 248,510 times
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Thanks for all the great feedback and ideas. I am now a bit worried about the drive from Corolla to the rest of the island. We choose Corolla because it was quiet - but it may prove to be too quiet. When you say the center of the island is more active - is it crowded as well? I would prefer to stay away from the crowd. As my name states I am from NJ and the beaches here are beyond crowded which led us to OBX in the first place. Either way I am sure I will have a good time.
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Old 04-11-2012, 08:42 PM
 
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During the week it is not a bad drive from Corolla to KDH. I used to make the drive 3 or 4 times a week.

There is the Lost Colony Play in Manteo(northern part of Manteo). It is always a good show to see. Down town Maneo is a good place to hit also as well as Festival Park in Manteo. You can go through the museum, see the ship The Elizabeth II, and around the flag pole you can hunt for fossilised sharks teeth. There is also the NC Aquariam also in Manteo by the airport. The Elizabithen Gardens by the Lost Comony Play.
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Old 04-12-2012, 04:52 PM
 
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You will see quite a few NJ plates down here as well at the coast! lol. But it is all good. It really depends on the time of the season you are there. 4th of july the week before and after, insane. late June and August slows down a bit but can still take forever to get down from Corolla. While the middle of the island is more crowded and where the majority of things to do are, the main road is 4 lane so traffic flows a bit quicker. Plus more for the kids. Just north of Kitty Hawk but not so far up it is a bit quieter so maybe try the area just north of there. Kill Devil Hill, Nags Head is busier but not to hard to get around. Corolla is fine but I have a 5 yr old and a 14 year old and would not stay up there as I know they would be bored and want to head south! Either have fun all of the OB are great.
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Old 04-18-2012, 10:16 AM
 
Location: Ayrsley
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Quote:
Originally Posted by njposter View Post
Thanks for all the great feedback and ideas. I am now a bit worried about the drive from Corolla to the rest of the island. We choose Corolla because it was quiet - but it may prove to be too quiet. When you say the center of the island is more active - is it crowded as well? I would prefer to stay away from the crowd. As my name states I am from NJ and the beaches here are beyond crowded which led us to OBX in the first place. Either way I am sure I will have a good time.
We stay in Duck every July. The drive from Corolla to Kitty Hawk is about 20-25 miles and, really, the drive down is not that bad, maybe about 40 minutes or so max. most days. 12 is a two-lane road so an accident may cause a delay; and Saturdays (which is the primary check-in / check-out day for houses) are a mess - but generally it is not that bad during the rest of the week.

Corolla is not quite as quiet as Duck (which has few shops and no public beach access) there are a number of shops and restaurants and some things to do up there. But Corolla is less crowded than Kitty Hawk / Kill Devil Hills / Nags Head for a number of reasons: First, it is further north so many people coming in for day trips or even just for weekends generally stay in KH/KDH/NH. Second, the area around KH/KDH/NH is wider (there you have the main road and the beach road) so there is phsyically more room for people. Also, the KH/KDH/NH area has a LOT of hotels (many right on the beach), wheras Corolla is almost all houses.

Corolla also has some of the nicest beaches in that whole stretch. Corolla is also a bit more upscale than KH/KDH/NH as well (I know some people get funny about mentioning it, but its true).

Overall, because the banks are so small, you are not going to get the crowds like you get at Ocean City or Seaside Heights, no matter where you are. And, while KH/KDH/NH is more active in the sense that there are more shops / restaurants and the few things like a go-karts, mini-golf, etc, no place is really terrribly "active" - there's no boardwalk, not a lot of nightlife - the whole place is pretty chill.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bgpeacock View Post
4th of july the week before and after, insane.
Its still not too bad. We've been going for close to 20 years, and over the past 10 we always go the week of July 4. It can be packed getting in and out, but it does not seem that much busier during the week than other times in the Summer.
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Old 04-18-2012, 11:30 AM
 
57 posts, read 248,510 times
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Wow - thanks to all for the great info. Seems like we are in for a bit of a ride but it does not sound that bad. Not bad at all compared to NJ traffic . I assume we will certainly make trips out of Corolla for the kids and all but laid back attitude and calm of Corolla appeal to me. Again, if its not a hit there is always next year
In regards to Corolla - are there mini-golf and ice creams stores around? Not matter how old you get that stuff always says summer vacation to me. Thanks again for the great info.
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Old 04-18-2012, 11:05 PM
 
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Unless things have changed all the mini Golf courses are in Kittyhawk, KDH (Kill Devi Hills), and Nags Head. I believe there is an ice cream shop or two in Coralla.
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Old 04-19-2012, 02:30 PM
 
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There are plenty of things to do in Corolla. Lots of shopping, there's a go-kart track in Timbuk II, ice cream places, a movie theater for when it rains, you name it. I don't think you'll need to go down to KDH for things to do unless you're looking for a specific restaurant or one of the historic sites like Jockey's Ridge, etc.

Corolla, NC Outer Banks Vacations | Corolla Guide

Have fun, I love Corolla!
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