Home Blog Thanksgiving on Hatteras Island


The year-round sunny and warm climate of North Carolina and the Outer Banks region, added to the sand, sun, water, and fun of the area make them an ideal destination for a Thanksgiving getaway. Zero in on Hatteras Island. There are plenty of things to do and see to create an OBX Thanksgiving escape for you and your loved ones this year.

Chicamacomico Thanksgiving Week Festivities

The unique historic site of historic life-saving stations and outbuildings hosts a week-long Thanksgiving party that’s not to be missed. Family-friendly events include a pig pickin’, Santa visits, an outdoor reenactment of a Beach Apparatus drill, and more. The museum and gift shop at the site offer loads of educational and fun activities as well. The festival runs Sunday, November 19th – Saturday, November 25th.

Surfin’ Turkey 5K and Puppy Drum Run

Get some exercise and burn some calories before the big meal. The annual event, which is sponsored by Midgett Realty, is one of the area’s Thanksgiving holiday highlights and supports the Hatteras Island Youth Education Fund. The event starts at the Hatteras Village Civic Center, with the 5K beginning at 8 a.m. and covering a three-mile stretch around Hatteras Village. The Puppy Drum Fun Run begins at 9 a.m. and covers just a half mile. Competitors in both races are encouraged to wear their holiday best costumes. On-site registration is available and includes a goody bag, T-shirt, and more.

Hatteras Island Arts and Craft Guild Holiday Show

Head over to Buxton to get into the holiday spirit. The show offers a wide range of arts and crafts by local and regional artists and craftspeople. Get some of your holiday shopping done or find your perfect Outer Banks souvenir. The show takes place Friday, November 24th and Saturday, November 25th from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

The Beach

An island escape this Thanksgiving means plenty of time on the beach! Lay out in the sun and sunbathe, get some exercise with a walk or run on the sand, build sand castles with the kids, or settle under your beach umbrella with a picnic and a book. Paddle your way through calmer waters on a stand-up paddleboard, kayak, or canoe, or get an adrenaline boost with a jet ski ride.

Beach Horseback Ride

Whether you and your loved ones are seasoned equestrians, or your OBX Thanksgiving trip to Hatteras Island will mark your first time on a horse, make the beautiful backdrop of the beach and Atlantic Ocean a “trail” ride to remember. You’ll wander down the sandy beaches on horseback, as well as in the water for an unforgettable beach experience! When making reservations, be prepared to provide the ages, heights, and weights of riders – it will help pair you and all your traveling companions with the horse most appropriate for each rider.

Cape Hatteras Lighthouse

Make a stop at the iconic Cape Hatteras Lighthouse this Thanksgiving. The black-and-white structure protects one of the most hazardous sections on the entire Atlantic Coast. The green area around the lighthouse is always open to the public, but the iconic stair climb activity is currently closed due to restoration efforts for the staircase.

Bodie Island Lighthouse

Do some island-hopping this Thanksgiving! Head to Bodie Island for a unique way to get your steps in. The 219-step indoor spiral staircase of the island’s lighthouse can be challenging – it’s the equivalent of climbing a ten-story building! The payoff is breathtaking views of Roanoke Sound. Purchase tickets online and arrive at least five minutes before your scheduled time. Guests must be at least 42” tall and no more than 260 pounds for a safe climb.

Hatteras Island Ocean Center

Learn more about the ocean surrounding Hatteras Island. The center is part of the Outer Banks National Scenic Byway, which stretches across Bodie, Hatteras, and Ocracoke Islands, Down East, and the Pamlico Sound. The center is within walking distance of central Hatteras Village, so it may also be an easy walk from your accommodations. Enjoy activities like a kayak nature tour, “Turtle Patrol” – where you’ll learn about the area’s sea turtles and view active nests or learn more about birding in the Outer Banks.

Hatteras Weather Bureau Station

Built in 1901, the historic wood-frame structure was active as the area’s primary weather station until 1946. The station provided data on conditions in the Atlantic Ocean from a fixed location and farther into the ocean environment than any other on the Atlantic Coast during the time it was in operation. After active operation ended, the station became a living quarters for Weather Bureau personnel, then a research station by many of North Carolina’s universities investigating “concerning” marine invertebrates.

OBX Thanksgiving on Hatteras Island

Start planning your perfect Thanksgiving getaway to the Outer Banks and book a vacation rental on Hatteras Island with Midgett Realty. Choose from a cozy 1-bedroom for a solo or sweetheart trip, all the way up to a sprawling 10-bedroom mansion for a Thanksgiving trip that includes all your loved ones. Prepare the holiday feast, or any meal or snack of the day in the fully equipped kitchen, enjoy a movie or TV show on an entertainment center, or get together to plan the day. Retreat to a private bedroom for some rest and relaxation at the end of the day.

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