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Travel in STYLE: Wrightsville Beach

Food & Wine

Travel in STYLE: Wrightsville Beach

One of the most accessible North Carolina beaches, Wrightsville Beach located in Wilmington is known for having fairly mild temperatures year-round, family and couple activities alike and delicious dining. These highlights, along with festive activities (did someone say Santa?) will make you enjoy this destination even more during the oh-so-easy beachy holiday season.

Intracoastal Waterway

Where to Stay
Blockade Runner Resort
, the only surf to sound hotel located in Wrightsville Beach allows access to not only the sandy beaches but also the Atlantic ocean. Some activities available include lounging in one of their manicured oceanfront lawn and gardens, beach cam and scenic boat tours. Celebrating 50 years this year, the family owned resort caters to adults and children ( named them one of the 10 Top beach resorts with kids’ clubs) and includes an on-site fitness center and award winning restaurant led by Chef Mark Lawson, East OceanFront Dining. Other services include the Surf to Sound Academy, where guests receive quality instruction from educators on various topics/activities including kayaking to bird watching) and fishing adventures.

Johnnie Mercer's Pier
Tip: Be sure to see the ask April (Surf and Sound Academy) about her Paddle boarding experience. She is award winning! Exploring Wrightsville Beach in the off-seasonWhere to Shop
Try keeping warm with a little retail therapy at these local shops.Try Redix (don’t let the exterior scare you off) which is truly a one stop shop with everything from fishing gear to top designer beachwear or Hallelu, an women’s boutique featuring boho chic dresses, tops and bottoms.Just a few miles from Wrightsville Beach, visit The Forum (stop in Apple Annie’s for a sweet treat), Mayfaire Town Center (over 80 shops and restaurants) and Lumina Station, winner of Coastal Living magazine’s contextual design and boasts places like Monkee’s and J. McLaughlin.

South Beach Grill_Bay scallop risotto over puff pastry with Tasso ham BBQ sauce

Bay scallop risotto over puff pastry with Tasso ham BBQ sauce from South Beach Grill

Where to Eat

South Beach Grill is one of those places that you can find yourself in every single day of your beach trip. The relaxed atmosphere is perfect for the jeans and t-shirt crew (and kiddos) and the food satisfies your taste buds. Chef James Rivenbark includes classics on his menu (i.e. Buffalo Chicken Wrap, Wedge Salad, etc) but flexes his creative muscles with other dishes like the Makers Mark Salad and Prince Edward Island Mussels Gilroy. The crab and seafood nachos are a must try.

If you are looking for a fine dining restaurant with the best view of the Atlantic Ocean, Oceanic Restaurant should be your number one choice. The customer service is superb, a great combination with the food and one-of-a-kind views.

Off the beach in Wilmington, try Osteria Cichetti, a classic Italian restaurant and wine bar that features daily specials including half price bottles of wine and 3 course pasta menu for $15. Don’t be afraid to order the pizza. It was the best thing I had.

Celebrate the Holidays at Wrightsville Beach

Wilmington Holiday Parade: December 7
Get into the Christmas spirit with the Wilmington Holiday Parade that features marching bands, floats, entertainers and a special appearance by Santa Claus. The parade will begin at N. Front and Walnut streets.

Wrightsville Beach Holiday Decorating Contest: December 10
This free event is sponsored by the Harbor Island Garden Club, the Parks and Recreation Advisory Committee and the Parks and Recreation Department and will showcase businesses and residences getting into the holiday spirit. The contest will take place on December 10th but visitors can simply walk and/or drive by to see the beautiful decorations during the holiday season.


5K Jingle Run: December 13
This annual event hosted by the Wrightsville History Museum encourages participants to dress up holiday garb (think Santa Claus and reindeer antlers) while running through scenic Wrightsville Beach. Event organizers expect 500+ people to attend.The Nutcracker Ballet: December 20-21
This classic holiday story will be performed at the Wilmington Ballet Company. This is only full length production in Wilmington and is executed by talented dancers who are sure to bring the production to life.Fast Facts

  • Wrightsville Beach is located 3 1/2 hours from Charlotte.
  • Did you know that Wilmington, NC is where Fox TV’s “Sleepy Hollow” is filmed and the area is home to the largest film production facility (EUE/Screen Gems Studio) east of L.A.?
  • The Wilmington Beach Riverfront was voted one of the America’s best riverfronts by the USA Today.
  • There are more than 200 shops, restaurants, attractions and a convention center within walking distance of the riverfront.

Thinking of a Wrightsville Beach getaway? Get more information at

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