It’s no secret that our beautiful barrier islands draw visitors year-round. The Outer Banks is home to one of the top scenic drives in the South! Striking scenes of the dramatic roaring ocean, tranquil sound waters, and colorful ecosystems paint the perfect picture for the ultimate getaway. Read on to learn more about this incredible drive. Then, be sure to get your free copy of our Vacation Guide for authentic local insight on the best of OBX.
The Outer Banks Is Home to One of the Top Scenic Drives in the South
State 12 at Cape Hatteras National Seashore was voted as one of Southern Living’s South’s 10 Best Scenic Drives in 2020 for a good reason. Travel along this two-lane highway and take in the views of the Atlantic on one side and the Currituck, Albemarle, Roanoke, and Pamlico Sounds to the other. The Outer Banks Scenic Byway spans 131 miles and takes roughly 6 hours to drive.
Points of Interest
Along the way, you will encounter unspoiled natural spaces, beautiful lighthouses, and more. You might want to consider stopping to visit some of the following points of interest:
- Cape Hatteras National Seashore
- Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge
- Cedar Island National Wildlife Refuge
- Bodie Island Lighthouse
- Oregon Inlet
- Cape Hatteras Lighthouse
- Ocracoke Village
- Harkers Island
- & more!
When You Arrive at Your Destination
Whether you decide to stay in Corolla, where the famed wild horses roam, Duck, where the famous Duck Donuts originated, or Southern Shores, you’ll find so many wonderful ways to get settled into your stay on the Outer Banks.
Stretch Your Legs
After a long drive, you’ll be ready to get out of the car and stretch your legs. Consider hiking at the Currituck Banks Reserve or biking on a beautiful local trail.
Grab a Bite to Eat
There are so many wonderful places to fill your belly on the Outer Banks. Here are some of our favorite dining resources:
- 6 Waterfront Restaurants in Duck With the Best Views
- Get a Taste of the Best Outer Banks Seafood Restaurants
- Feast at One of the Top 5 Nags Head, NC, Restaurants
- 7 Amazing Duck, NC, Restaurants for the Best Local Eats
- 10 of the Best Corolla NC Restaurants
Unwind at Your Vacation Rental
Now that you know more about what makes the Outer Banks Scenic Byway one of the top scenic drives in the South, it’s time to start planning your trip. Paramount Destinations vacation rentals make the perfect home away from home for your OBX adventures. Choose between homes with private pools, elevators, or dog-friendly accommodations. Our thoughtful team goes above and beyond to ensure that your stay with us is one that you’ll remember for a lifetime!