The seas around the Outer Banks teem with a large variety of marine life. Unfortunately, many visitors never have the opportunity to witness this varied ecosystem in action. The North Carolina State Aquarium on Roanoke Island provides the opportunity to encounter sharks and sting rays, puffer fish and puppy drum, large moray eels and schools of small mackerel. It is an adventure that those of all ages may enjoy. There are touch tanks for children, interactive computer displays, and even alligators.
In 1587, 20 years prior to the colony at Jamestown, 116 men, women, and children struggled for existence in the wilderness and vanished without a trace. Their disappearance remains one of the great mysteries of history. No clue of this thriving community has every been found, save for the eerie carving upon the bark of an old, twisted oak: "Croatan". It is the saga known as The Lost Colony. The play is produced at historic Waterside Theater on Roanoke Island. For information on tickets and show times visit The Lost Colony
Foliage fans and gardening enthusiasts from all over the country will love a day trip to the Elizabethan Gardens. Tucked away in Manteo within the Fort Raleigh National Historic Site, this 10 acre Roanoke soundfront locale is home to hundreds of species of native plants and wildlife, as well as rare and treasure varieties from all over the world, and offers a unique natural display with every visit. elizabethangardens.org/