At the southwest end of a tiny island thrusting into the Atlantic lies the second oldest operating lighthouse in America. Its beacon winks each night every ten seconds or so over Ocracoke Village, nestled around scenic Silver Lake Harbor. Ocracoke Island is a site where life exists on the Outer Banks as it was 30, 50, even 100 years ago. Here, interspersed among the old clapboard island homes, are a school, post office, two churches, and a sprinkling of stores, motels, and restaurants.
Approximately 700 people call Ocracoke Island home. Many of the native "O"cockers" still speak with the distinctive "hoi toide" accent, a dialect reminiscent of seafaring England from earlier times when the island was isolated from mainland North Carolina. Accessible only by ferry, a day trip to Ocracoke includes southern hospitality, unique shopping and wonderful seafood in its restaurants. The Hatteras Inlet ferry ride is free and promises 60 minutes of fun, excitement, and restful contemplation.
More Ocracoke Island History
Enjoy the scenic, 1 hour ferry ride across the Hatteras Inlet and the 15 minute drive into town from the docks. This ferry service is free. You can catch the ferry at the end of Hatteras village every hour. Complete Ferry Schedule
Horseback Riding on the Beach
The beaches on Ocracoke are unlike any other. Recently named the #1 beach in America, the expansive open beach is a great place to take a ride. Contact the locals to take a tour via horseback on the serene white sands. You will not be disappointed.
Visit Art Shops
Ocracoke is home to many local artists. Visit the art shops along the Island to find your favorite piece. There is something new and exsciting in each one as they all have personality of their own. Take a backpack and bike to each one. You don't want to miss any that may be hidden on a back road!
The best way to get around town is by bikes. Ocracoke is a compact town and it is easy to pass by the favorite spots in a car. Slow down your pace and rent a bike from the local shop located in the center of town. They have bikes of all sizes. All of the shops on the Island have bike racks for parking and it really ties in the feel of Ocracoke life.
Visit Howard's Pub
Fun loving and casual, Howard's is open every day for lunch, dinner and late night.You will often find locals catching up on Island news as well as visitors from all over the world. With a list of over 200 beers, HP is famous for an extensive menu and drink selection. Decor is eclectic with college pennants and license plates and often hosts live entertainment.
Tour the Lighthouse Although it is not open for climbing, this 75 foot lighthouse is a must-see. It is located in the heart of downtown Ocracoke and boasts an amazing landscape. The colors make an amazing backdrop for family or wedding photos. It is free to visit, but don't forget your camera!
If you seek isolation and privacy, Ocracoke is the place for you. Hatteras Realty provides homes that will place you in a seashell's toss of this magical island and her many temptations. Stay with us, let us provide you your base to seek adventure and discovery and to revel in the beauty that is Ocracoke Island.
For a detailed history on Ocracoke click here.
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