We spent the first part of our summer holidays in the Outer Banks together with the family of my husband’s brother. We rented a house in Nags Head almost directly at the beach…
The Outer Banks are a 200 miles long string of barrier islands and narrow peninsulas at the coast of North Carolina, they’re separating the Atlantic Ocean from the mainland. You can find there long open sea beaches, several state parks and the old shipwrecks make them popular at the divers. Roanoke Island was the site of England’s first settlement in America and Kill Devils Hill was the place for the first flight experiments from the Wright Brothers.
Really a beautiful place with its miles long uncongested natural beaches, great fresh seafood, wild horses and some truly lovely lighthouse. We visited three of them, the Currituck beach light station on Corolla. It started working on December 1, 1875 and to distinguish this lighthouse from other regional ones, its exterior was left unpainted which gives visitors a sense of the multitude of bricks used to form the structure. Height 162′ and number of steps 220. The most beautiful and also the tallest is Cape Hatteras Lighthouse in Buxton with its red base and the black and white spiral painted tower. It was constructed in 1830, destroyed 1862 because of the civil war and rebuild 1871. Height 193′ and number of steps 250. Unfortunately we couldn’t climb up because of a thunderstorm. The last one in our lighthouse hunting series was bodie island lighthouse. Erected 1872, also black and white painted, Height 170′ and 230 steps to climb. Due to a waiting time of 3 hours we stayed on the ground and visited only the shop and the surrounding.
A perfect place to enjoy the sunset is Jockey’s Ridge State Park. A park with huge sand dunes on 420 acres. It’s the tallest natural sand dunes system in the Eastern United States.
After a week on this beautiful spot we went home with a stopover in New Bern, a charming riverfront town. In 1710 Christopher de Graffenried founded New Bern, the second oldest town in North Carolina. He named the city after his hometown Bern in Switzerland. Since 1895 New Bern is officially the “daughter” city of the Swiss capital. New Bern was the capital of the colonial government and home to the first state capitol of North Carolina. Tryon Place served as the capital building until 1778 and hosted many famous Americans, including George Washington. The town is also known as the birthplace of Pepsi Cola. In 1893 the local pharmacist Caleb Bradham invented the recipe. A blend of kola nut extract, vanilla and seasoning.
It was a beautiful week, as always much to fast over and now we’re looking forward to our next visitors.