Well, I have to admit that this time of year is my favorite on the Outer Banks. Yes, I know it is cold (some days) and windy (a lot more days), but it is also very beautiful and peaceful and gives me a chance to recharge. Some days, on the way home, I may only pass two or three cars on the Beach Road. It is very quiet.
I can and do have time to call old friends and get together for lunch or dinner. There are still places open, you just have to know which ones and Tip #1, Always call any business in the off season while you are here to make they are, indeed, open. Now, that being said there are a few places I would like to recommend to you if you are an off-season traveler.
Hotels and B&B & B's are not your only options for a short-stay on the OBX. We manage many homes that offer short stays...three or more nights. Anything from a small condo to a very large oceanfront estate. Think foot-ball weekend, a "divacation", golf trip, fishing trip or a family reunion. Off season prices are attractive. You can find some great bargains. Many homes have amenities like theater rooms, dry saunas, sports bars, game rooms, hot tubs...and many allow you to bring the family dog too.
Got to Chips Wine and Beer Market and have a wine tasting..or a beer tasting. Very friendly people and a large, I mean LARGE, selection of wines and beers to choose from. Rent a Jeep and drive on the beach. Read THIS FIRST.
The Elizabethan Gardens are open all year. Great time to go, no crowds. Art galleries are open...we like Yellowhouse Gallery in Nags Head and KDH Co-operative in Kill Devil Hills.
A mini-vacation on the beach might be good for your soul. Relax, breathe in the salt air and even walk the beach, if the weather is cooperating.
You will be able to find good restaurants that are open...such as Ocean Boulevard Bistro and Martini Bar in Kitty Hawk, Blue Moon in Nags Head, Tortugas in Nags Head, JK's Steaks and Seafood in Kill Devil Hills. In Corolla, there are fewer choices but I know Sundogs Raw Bar and Grill is open all year. The Blue Point in Duck is open most days (call first). BK Shuckers in Kitty Hawk is open. So is The Black Pelican. Two places that are always open are Kelly's Restaurant in Nags Head and Jolly Roger in KDH. Props to them...Jolly Roger is even open on Christmas Day!
Yes, shops are open too, not all of them but places like The French Door and Cloud Nine and Belks and many others. And the movie theaters are open and yes, we have the latest movies here.
Read some books...relax. Take photos. Eat seafood. Relax some more. And thanks for visiting.