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Trip Report Trip Report: OBX & BIS Kitty Hawk

Our summer vacation this year (early June) was spent in the Outer Banks of NC. We enjoyed the area and the nice mix of activities, history and good weather. Our family of 4 (kids 10 & 7 year old) made the long drive from Indianapolis and stayed in Kitty Hawk at the Barrier Island Station Resort. We were joined by my SIL and niece (6). This was our first time doing the timeshare thing (RCI points) and we were pleased with the accommodations. We stayed in a new condo towards the “back” of the resort. It was huge (4BR/10) and fit our needs well. It was quite a walk to the pool (so much that we drove towards the end of the week). The resort was not on the beach which was a short drive away.

We only spent 1 morning at the beach as our kids prefer the pool. The water was still a little chilly (60’s) though the beach was nice to walk. The pool was great, btw. It was a really nice set up for our beginner and intermediate swimmers.

Our activities for the week:

1) Wright Brothers National Memorial was really neat from the engineering and aviation perspective (DW and my profession). Make sure you sit through the ranger’s talk. Our kids enjoyed filling out the worksheets to get their Jr. Ranger badges too. Can be done in a morning. Highly recommended.

2) Jockey Ridge State Park – hiked to the sound and up the dunes. Flew kites and watched hang glider trainees. Also fun (and free). Also a morning (only).

3) Trip to Ocracoke. Visited 3 light houses (Bodie Island, Buxton/Hatteras, Ocracoke). Enjoyed the view from the top of the Buxton lighthouse, though it is a little pricey ($7 / 3.50). Took the ferry to Ocracoke. Nice beach there if you want to plan on that (and warmer Gulfstream waters). We actually took a tour through the resort for this day trip to get some of the other history. I’d stop at the Chicamacomico live saving station as it sounded interesting.

4) Roanoke Island – generally not worth it. R.I. Festival Park and the Aquarium were really small compared to others I’ve been too (including Indy). Each was $28 or so for the family of 4. I’d skip them both. I guess we are "big city" snobs.

5) Lost Colony – we saw the outdoor play (also on Roanoke Island). It was good but hard to concentrate with all the kids (others, not ours) and airplanes flying over. I’d recommend it, but given the price ($22/10) maybe not. It’s nice to hear that bit of history. That will come down to personal choice.

We were pretty much at the pool the rest of the time.

Driving to the location and staying in a condo allowed us to cook in most of the time. We did eat out a few times. We like quality over quantity (no buffets). I would definitely recommend the Black Pelican (mile marker 4 – 4.5 on Beach Road (12)). It’s in a former life saving station of its own. Our seafood was really good as was the wood grilled pizza for the kids. More than $50, less than $100. We ate at the Collington Café w/o the kids. Nice, but not suitable for a family. The other place was Howard’s Pub for lunch on Ocracoke. Food was fine. Neat building if you get down that far.

All in all, it was a great trip. Given the distance, it’s probably not something we would do on a regular basis.

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