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Roanoke Island Things To Do (Including Wanchese and Manteo Things To Do)

No matter what Roanoke Island recreation you choose during your stay here, one thing is certain, you’ll never be bored.

Whether you crave relaxation or high-energy adventure, it’s all here. Sail along the sound or take a dolphin-sighting cruise. Go crabbing from a dock or fight a marlin on an off-shore charter fishing trip. Parasail high above water or take a bike ride along the island. Watch the sun set from the decks of a beautiful boat or zip through the sound on a Jet boat. Stroll along the Manteo boardwalk and enjoy the island’s quaint beauty or enjoy a modern movie in an old-fashioned theater. Join the local kids at the town-built skatepark or take the little ones to the waterfront playground. As you can see, Manteo recreation opportunities run the gamut!

And when you look beyond Manteo to other Roanoke Island recreation possibilities, you’ll find air tours, fishing, backwater kayak tours, head boat excursions, yoga and Pilates classes, spas, scuba trips and more.

See our Attractions section for more about all of the places to visit on the island, places like the North Carolina Aquarium, Roanoke Island Festival Park, The Elizabethan Gardens and Fort Raleigh National Historic Site. Roanoke Island offers numerous special events, festivals, programs, performing arts, summer camps, children’s programs and more all summer long. If you are here in the off season there are still lots of interesting events year round too. See our Annual Events.

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Alligator River Canoe Tours

  • Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, Buffalo City Road, off U.S. Highway 64 (Dare County Mainland)
  • Manteo
  • (252) 216-9464

Don’t miss this chance to really get out in the wild! Take a guided canoe tour through the shady blackwater canals deep into the heart of the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge and learn about the fascinating history of the area along the way (there used to be a logging town out here in the middle of nowhere). Choose from two-hour or three-hour tours. The two-hour tour is held on Thursdays from 10 a.m. to noon in the months of June, July and August. This tour costs $25 per person ($15 for children 12 and younger). The three-hour tour is held on Wednesdays and Fridays from 9 a.m. to noon from May through September. This tour costs $35 per person ($20 for children 12 and younger). Reservations and footwear are required. Call for reservations and information. Hats, sunscreen, insect repellent and drinking water are recommended. Meet at the south end of Buffalo City Road off U.S. Highway 64 in East Lake.

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Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge

  • Milltail Road, off U.S. Highway 64
  • (252) 473-1131

Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge is a 154,000-acre refuge on the mainland portion of Dare and Hyde counties. It was established in 1984 to preserve and protect a unique wetland habitat type, the pocosin, and its associated wildlife species. Pocosin is a Native American word meaning ‘‘swamp-on-a-hill’’ and is characterized by poorly drained soils high in organic material. The Refuge’s diversity of habitat types includes high and low pocosin, bogs, fresh and brackish water marshes, hardwood swamps and Atlantic white cedar swamps. Plant species include pitcher plants and sun dews, low bush cranberries, bays, Atlantic white cedar, pond pine, gums, red maple and a wide variety of herbaceous and shrub species common to the East Coast.

The Refuge is one of the last remaining strongholds for black bear on the Eastern Seaboard, and it is the only place in the world where endangered red wolves still exist in the wild. It is home to concentrations of ducks, geese and swans, and its wildlife diversity also includes wading birds, shorebirds, American woodcock, raptors, American alligators, white-tailed deer, raccoons, rabbits, quail, river otters, red-cockaded woodpeckers and neotropical migrant song birds.

Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge has great paddling trails, a wildlife drive, two wildlife trails and all types of wildlife and habitat for you to learn about. The staff offers several programs throughout the year, including Tram Tours, Canoe Tours, Red Wolf Howling Safaris and the Bear Necessities program about black bears.

The refuge is open year round during daylight hours.

To learn more about Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, visit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Wildlife Refuges Visitor Center. The center’s exhibits offer information about Alligator River and 10 other refuges in the northeastern North Carolina and southeast Virginia. This Visitor Center is located on the north end of Roanoke Island, about a quarter-mile past the entrance to Fort Raleigh National Historic Site. The staff that manages the Alligator River Refuge also manages Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge on Hatteras Island; see our Hatteras site’s Recreation chapter for more information.

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Country Girl Head Boat

  • 1 Sailfish Drive, Docks at Pirate's Cove Marina
  • Manteo

The Country Girl can be chartered for full-day Gulf Stream trips for parties of six or more people. Call for rates and schedules. Gulf Stream trips usually yield tuna and mahi-mahi, wahoo, king mackerel, marlin or sailfish depending on the season and conditions. The Country Girl also offers head boat–style wreck fishing. The 57-foot sportfisher can accommodate up to 30 passengers and provides plenty of room for everyone. This is a great way to get a big group of friends together for a day on the water. You’ll catch a variety of species, including black sea bass, triggerfish, gray tile fish, grouper, amberjack and more. The cost is $110 per person, with a minimum of 15 people. Bait, tackle and license are furnished. The Country Girl is also available for bird watching, marine mammal excursions, bachelor, bachelorette and scattering ashes at sea.

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Crystal Dawn Head Boat

  • 1 Sailfish Drive, Docks at Pirate’s Cove Marina
  • Manteo

Whether for head boat fishing or cruises, check out the Crystal Dawn for a fun-filled and fabulous time on the water. This 65-foot head boat makes two half-day inshore fishing trips daily (every day except Sunday). Whether you take the morning or the afternoon trip, you’re guaranteed a great time. The boat fishes in the sound and inlet for a variety of inshore species including flounder, croaker, spot, trout, sea mullet, sea bass and more, depending on the season and conditions. All bait and tackle are provided, and a mate is on hand to assist you if you need it. There’s plenty of elbow room on a boat this large, so you won’t feel cramped. Tickets are sold in advance, but walk-ups are usually accepted. Head boat fishing prices are $40 for adults and $30 for children ages 10 and younger. The Crystal Dawn also makes one-and-a-half-hour evening cruises in the sound, including commentary on the local history and ecology of the Outer Banks. Roanoke Island Cruises are $15 adults and $10 children 10 and younger. The vessel can hold up to 100 people and is available for private charters, bachelor and bachelorette parties, family functions and more. Small coolers are welcome.

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Grace Bodywork Therapy

  • 711 N. Highway 64
  • Manteo

Experts estimate that as much as ninety percent of disease is stress-related and perhaps nothing contributes more to aging than stress. Grace Bodywork Therapy provides an effective tool for helping you manage stress and improve the overall quality of your life. Conveniently located in the Waterfront Shops overlooking picturesque Shallowbag Bay in Downtown Manteo, Grace Bodywork offers a variety of rejuvenating massage therapy options only steps away from a multitude of shopping and dining venues. Owner Gina Gina Booth is a state-licensed massage therapist who is also certified in integrative touch therapy recommended for cancer patients. The therapeutic massage methods she practices can help diminish stress and reduce the effects of many physical ailments. By pumping oxygen and nutrients into tissues and vital organs, massage therapy improves energy, flexibility and circulation, stimulates concentration, improves relaxation, reduces pain (even migraine pain) and helps to speed recovery from injuries and medical procedures. Massage therapy can even contribute to shorter, easier labor for expectant mothers, resulting in shorter hospital stays. Grace Bodywork Therapy offers chair massage (a seated massage focusing on relieving tension in the neck, back, shoulders and arms), deep tissue massage, geriatric massage, neuro-muscular massage, oncology massage, relaxation massage and hot stone therapy. Additional services include luxury hand and foot treatments utilizing 100% natural, plant-based emollients and pure essential oils. Bodywork therapy is an investment in your health and happiness. Regardless of your age, injury or ailment, Grace Bodywork Therapy can help return you to tip-top shape.

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Pirate Adventures of the Outer Banks

  • Downtown Manteo Waterfront
  • Manteo

Pirate costumes, face painting, a real pirate ship, messages in bottles, water cannons, stinky pirate enemies and sunken treasure — need we say more to convince you that this is the ultimate kid-pleasing adventure? Starting Memorial Day weekend, the Sea Gypsy IV sails seven days a week, six times a day: 9:30 a.m., 11 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 2 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. Face painting and dress up begin 30 minutes prior to departure time, so get there early. Cost is $20/person, $12 for children age 2 and younger. On Saturdays and Sundays take advantage of discounted Weekend Warrior rates of $15/person with $12 for children age 2 and younger. Reservations are strongly recommended.

Air Adventures by Luckey Aviation

  • 410 Airport Road, Dare County Regional Airport
  • Roanoke Island
  • (704) 668-9655

Bob Luckey, a pilot with more than 33 years of safe flying experience, is now offering Air Adventures aerial tours of the Outer Banks. Luckey flies a Cessna Skyhawk, which can carry up to three people, and offers set tours of 15 minutes, a half-hour or one hour as well as custom tours. Seeing the Outer Banks from the air is not only a thrilling ride, but it also gives you a whole new perspective of the fragility of these beautiful islands. Luckey offers flight instruction as well.

B&R Rent-A-Car

  • 404 U.S. Highway 64
  • Manteo
  • (252) 473-2141

B&R has two locations: R.D. Sawyer Ford in Manteo and the Dare County Regional Airport. With no pick-up or delivery fees (if on the island or a local marina) or service fees, B&R makes it an easy and pleasant experience to rent a car. Rent for long or short term or while your own vehicle is being serviced. Be sure to call in advance to make reservations. Daily and weekly rentals are available.

Barrier Island Aviation

  • Dare County Regional Airport, 407 Airport Road
  • Manteo
  • (252) 473-4247

Barrier Island Aviation offers biplane rides and air tours lasting from 10 minutes up to an hour. Three people can fly in the Cessna and two can go up in the biplane. Tours fly over the ocean shoreline, down to Hatteras or up to Corolla, over Oregon Inlet, Jockey’s Ridge and all the major attractions. Prices average $40 per person for biplane rides and $20 per person for air tours. They take reservations, or you can just walk up.

Bear Necessities

  • Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge, U.S. Highway 64, Dare County Mainland
  • Manteo
  • (252) 216-9464

Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge is home to one of the largest population of black bears in the eastern United States. Learn more about the bears and go on a scouting trip to look for the big furry creatures with a Fish and Wildlife Service staff person. These programs are held on Wednesdays from 5:30 to 7 p.m. in June, July and August. Meet at the Creef Cut Wildlife Trail parking lot, 4 miles west of the U.S. Highway 64/264 split. Bring binoculars and insect repellent. Immediately following the bear program is the Wolf Howling program, so you could feasibly do both.

Better Body Massage

  • 711 N. Highway 64, Suite B
  • Roanoke Island
  • (252) 305-1176

Lori Hillyer is a state licensed, nationally certified massage therapist who has been in practice for close to 10 years. She can offer Swedish, deep tissue, pregnancy, relaxation and customized massages. She also has her cosmetology license, specializing in facials and body treatments.

Bodywork for Balanced Health

  • Manteo
  • (252) 216-8072

Massage therapist Shaena Hollomon treats clients to relaxing massages in styles like Swedish, deep-tissue and sports massage. Hollomon also offers skilled specialties like Thai massage. Call for an appointment and she will come to you.

Broad Creek Fishing Center Ships Store

  • 708 Harbor Road, Wanchese Seafood Industrial Park
  • Wanchese
  • (252) 473-9991

Located in the Wanchese Seafood Industrial Park, the ship’s store at Broad Creek Fishing Center offers everything you need for a day of fishing. Pick up your snacks, beverages and ice here before heading out. They also stock boating accessories and maintenance supplies. Broad Creek offers a large selection of seasonal tackle and frozen bait. Don’t forget to check out their sunglasses, T-shirts, sweatshirts and hats. Broad Creek offers centralized booking for offshore and inshore charter fishing. They have nine boats in their fleet, and their booking service offers hassle-free, book-where-you-board convenience. Diesel and gas are also available.

Captain Johnny’s Dolphin Tours

  • 309 Queen Elizabeth Avenue, Manteo Waterfront
  • Manteo
  • (252) 473-1475, (866) 473-1475

It’s very exciting to watch bottlenose dolphins frolicking and rolling through the water. Dolphins live in the sounds and from June through October frequent the local waters. Since 1995 Capt. Stuart Wescott, a ninth-generation Roanoke Island native, has offered dolphin watch tours in the Roanoke Sound aboard the 53-foot pontoon-type boat Capt. Johnny. If you miss the dolphins on your first trip, Capt. Wescott gives you a second tour for free. Wescott shares his knowledge and history of the area on the tour as well. Dolphin tours last two hours, and there are several trips a day (morning, mid-day and sunset). Expect to pay around $30 for adults and $20 for children 12 and younger. Sunset cruises, bird-watching tours and shrimping/crabbing cruises are also offered. Stop by the dock site on the Manteo waterfront, click their information on this website, go to their Facebook page or call for more information. Note that these tours run only Monday through Friday. You can also get 24/7 recorded information about trips at (252) 480-9151.

Causeway Dock and Pier

  • Beneath the Washington Baum Bridge (Nags Head/Manteo Causeway)
  • Manteo

Beneath the Washington Baum bridge on the Nags Head/Manteo Causeway is an extensive public dock that makes a great spot for fishing or crabbing. Just bring your own tackle and supplies and drop your line. A two-slip boat ramp and ample parking for vehicles and trailers are available.

Charter Private Sailing Aboard the Sea’scape/Sail Outer Banks

  • Tours leave from the Manteo waterfront boardwalk behind Poor Richard's Sandwich Shop
  • Manteo
  • (252) 473-2719

The Sea’scape is a beautiful 41’ ketch (which means the sailboat has two masts for those of you not in the nautical know) that takes guests on daily private sail charter tours into the Roanoke and Albemarle sounds. Tours leave from the Manteo boardwalk. Captain Dan Bottjen and first mate Katherine can take up to six passengers out at a time. Imagine slipping along in the water, a lovely breeze filling the sails, the quiet that comes when you leave the hubub of the shore behind…it’s perfection! The boat has a fully equipped galley, so you’re welcome to bring along food and refreshments. And there are two heads on board. Half-day sails (weekends only), lasting three to four hours, are $60 per person ($180 minimum). And daily sunset sails, which also last three to four hours, are $70 per person ($210 minimum) and are timed to return to the Manteo waterfront right at sunset.

Children’s Performance Series at Roanoke Island Festival Park

  • 1 Festival Park, Roanoke Island Festival Park
  • Manteo
  • (252) 475-1506

The Children’s Performance Series at Roanoke Island Festival Park features world-class entertainment for all ages, but it’s especially geared to children. The performers, students at North Carolina universities, delight and excite young audiences. The 2013 season includes Kids Jazz Excursion and Workshop, Luna, Storybook Theatre Tales from Around the World Part II, Broadway For Kids and Charlotte’s Web. The series is very popular so arrive early to ensure a seat. The series is held April 20 through July 20. Performances are held in the Film Theatre. Tickets are $5 for ages 6 years old and older. Ages 5 and younger get in free. For show dates, times and other details visit the Roanoke Island Festival Park website. Tickets may be purchased in advance at the Visitors Center or the day of the event. Check www.outerbanksthisweek.com for specific show information.

Coastal Helicopters

  • 410 Airport Road, Dare County Regional Airport
  • Roanoke Island
  • (252) 475-HELI (4354)

Looking for a spectacular way to see the Outer Banks? Lift off in a helicopter for the best possible view of the Outer Banks. They’ll take you on a tour around Roanoke Island, along some of the beautiful beaches (where you’ll see shipwrecks), the Bodie Island Lighthouse, Jockey’s Ridge, the Wright Brothers Memorial, sea life and more, or you can customize your own tour. Longer tours also available to see the wild Banker ponies of Corolla, Hatteras and Ocracoke lighthouses and Portsmouth Island. The helicopter accommodates up to three passengers at a time, and the cockpit is air-conditioned for a comfortable ride. Coastal Helicopters offers charter service around the region, including Corolla, where they have a landing spot. Tours are available for less than $42 per person, and gift certificates are available.

Coastal Kayak Touring Company

  • Tours in various locations
  • Manteo
  • (252) 441-3393

You haven’t seen the Outer Banks until you’ve seen it from the water, and Coastal Kayak can take you there. They offer trips to four different areas of the Outer Banks: Pine Island Audubon Sanctuary (between Corolla and Duck), Kitty Hawk Woods, Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge on Hatteras Island and the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge on the Dare County mainland. The Pine Island trip on the Currituck Sound is the closest to Duck. Tours last two to three hours. The guides offer kayaking instruction if you need it, plus they narrate about the local history and ecology along the way. Single and tandem kayaks are available. Stand up paddleboard (SUP) tours are available at Pine Island Audubon Sanctuary and Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge. Children are welcome as long they weigh at least 30 pounds, but certain trips are better for kids than others. Reservations are required.

Cypress Queen Yacht Charters

  • 303 Queen Elizabeth Avenue, Manteo Waterfront, Slip 52
  • Manteo
  • (252) 256-7188

Pull together your favorite people and cruise the local waterways aboard a private luxury yacht for an Outer Banks experience you won’t forget. On board the 52-foot yacht Cypress Queen, you can customize your cruise experience to fulfill your wishes. Enjoy cocktails and hors d’oeuvres on the shaded sky lounge at sunset, lunch on the deck while you look at the local scenery or a fully catered dinner in the comfort of the air-conditioned salon at night. Enjoy a post-cruise dock party on the waterfront when you get back to the dock. On a standard two-hour cruise, your host serves non-alcoholic beverages, but you are welcome to bring your own alcohol and they’ll provide all the mixers, glasses and ice. Lunch, dinner, appetizers and catering trays are available from local restaurants at an additional cost. There are up to three departures daily and cruises last for two hours. The Cypress Queen can comfortably accommodate six passengers. The captain and crew look forward to welcoming you aboard the Cypress Queen!

Dare County Airport Regional Airport Museum

  • Dare County Regional Airport Museum, 410 Airport Road, Manteo
  • Roanoke Island
  • (252) 475-5570

The Wright Brothers weren’t the only famous pilots to fly on the Outer Banks. Located inside Roanoke Island’s airport is an informative two-room museum dedicated to the rest of the story of aviation in Dare County. Learn about Dave Driskill, credited with bringing aviation to the Outer Banks in the 1930s, and how the current airport was built at the start of World War II, becoming a U.S. Navy Auxiliary Air Station and training site for World War II aircraft. A visit to the museum will open your eyes about local heroes like “Kitty Hawk Kid,” Lt. Sheldon R. “Ray” Beacham, credited with shooting down two Japanese Zero fighter planes in the South Pacific. Beacham and his VF-17 Squadron were one of the most famous Navy fighter squadrons, known for the skull and crossbones design painted on the noses of their planes. An important part of the exhibit tells the story of Coastal Patrol Base 16, based on Roanoke Island from July 1942 to August 1943. Manned by North Carolina volunteers of the Civil Air Patrol, CBP16 flew patrols over the ocean in private aircraft, looking for enemy submarines and ships and sailors in distress. The museum is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and admission is free.

Dare County Old Swimming Hole

  • Airport Road, next to the Aquarium
  • Manteo
  • (252) 475-5910

For a soundside swimming session, head down Airport Road to the Old Swimming Hole. The entrance is just beyond the North Carolina Aquarium on the right-hand side, just before you get to the airport. This family-oriented access is the perfect place to go after a tour of the aquarium. The Old Swimming Hole has a great sandy beach, picnic tables, grills, a picnic shelter, a playground, a volleyball court and all-new restrooms. Be aware that the depth changes fairly rapidly in places, so be very vigilant with your wee ones or with non-swimmers.

Diving at Roanoke Island Outfitters

  • 312 U.S. Highway 64
  • Manteo
  • (252) 473-1356

Diving at Roanoke Island Outfitters is a true outfitter specializing in diving, spearfishing and kayak tours for children and adults. They’re located in Manteo but offer activities all over the Outer Banks, including the central beaches of Nags Head, Kill Devil Hills and Kitty Hawk. Ask about their children’s activity tours, Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge tours, naturalist-led eco-tours, biolumenescence or full moon tours, sunrise or sunset tours or Your Family Only! tours. For rentals, they offer free delivery on Roanoke Island, will deliver to Nags Head, Pea Island or Alligator River for a fee, or you can take the kayak on your vehicle. They also offer scuba diving lessons, referral dives, beach dives and kayak dives and have a full-service scuba shop. They also have the largest selection of spearfishing guns and supplies on the Outer Banks. They offer NAUI certification courses from open water to instructor level. Online classes are now available. Don’t want to bring all your camping gear but want to camp? Roanoke Island Outfitters rents tents, bags, pads, cooking stoves and other camping gear. The store also rents scuba gear and spearfishing equipment. Adult bike rentals provide visitors an opportunity to take advantage of the island’s well-maintained bike path and shady side streets to tour Roanoke Island the best way, by bicycle. They also rent bikes for adults.

Downeast Rover

  • 307 Queen Elizabeth Avenue, Manteo Waterfront
  • Manteo
  • (252) 473-4866, (866) SAIL-OBX

Downeast Rover is a 55-foot topsail schooner offering sailing tours into the Roanoke Sound daily. The tall ship’s home berth is right on the Manteo waterfront. You’ll see Roanoke Island and Nags Head from the water plus birds of all kinds and perhaps some dolphin. They also take a sunset cruise in which you’ll watch the sun setting into the sound. Day cruises are $30 for adults, and children younger than 12 are half-price. Sunset cruises are $40 for all passengers (including children). You’re welcome to bring whatever you’d would like to eat or drink (alcohol and coolers are fine). Downeast Rover is also available for private charters for up to 27 passengers at a very reasonable price. Family reunions, parties and special occasions aboard the Rover become wonderful memories not to be forgotten. Call for details and to make reservations.

Elizabeth R Productions

  • Various Locations
  • Manteo
  • (252) 473-1061

Elizabeth R Productions presents historically based dramas written by historian lebame houston and performed in part by acclaimed actor Barbara Hird as Queen Elizabeth I. Hird is committed to authenticity in her interpretation of the character of Queen Elizabeth I, and houston is committed to historical accuracy. The dramas have received international acclaim, but their home base is here on Roanoke Island.

In Elizabeth R, Hird gives a commanding performance as Queen Elizabeth I. It’s a one-woman, hour-long performance in which the Queen spills the intimate details of her life, including her likes and dislikes, the reasons for making her decisions and information about her parents, her lovers and Sir Walter Raleigh’s colonies.

Shepherd of the Ocean is whimsical comedy about the relationship between Queen Elizabeth I and Sir Walter Raleigh. The play premiered in 2006 at the international Sir Walter Ralegh Festival in Youghal, Ireland, receiving rave reviews during its three-week run. Set primarily in a time warp, the play is a flashback of Raleigh’s most cherished moments with Queen Elizabeth.

Bloody Mary and the Virgin Queen is an outrageous musical farce based on the fact that Queen Elizabeth I and her half-sister Mary Tudor absolutely loathed one another during their lives, yet they were buried in the same tomb at Westminster Abbey. The show, set in present day, begins when the tourists have left the Abbey, allowing the ghosts to start their vocal bantering and arguing. The dialogue is a blend of contemporary issues and political satire about world and Roanoke Island events.

All of these productions are recommended for ages 14 and up. For the schedule of performances, call the number above or check www.outerbanksthisweek.com.

For historical entertainment of a more recent era, be sure to check out Portrait of Patsy Cline, a musical tribute to the legendary Country and Pop music star produced by Elizabeth R Productions and featuring talented local vocalist Laura Martier in the title role at the OBX Jubilee in Kitty Hawk each Wednesday evening at 7:30 p.m. from June 12 through August 14 (except July 3). Tickets are $25/person. For more information call (252) 473-1061 or visit the Elizabeth R Productions website.

Elizabethan Gardens

  • 1411 National Park Drive (off U.S. Highway 64) next to Fort Raleigh National Historic Site
  • Roanoke Island
  • (252) 473-3234

The Elizabethan Gardens offers fun events week days during the summer. For 2013, here’s what you can look forward to:

Minty Monday: Looking for a refreshing afternoon adventure? Children aged 6 to12 years will enjoy a one-hour “minty” adventure searching for and learning all about mint in The Gardens. Young learners will make mint rubbings and plant mint to take home as well as enjoy mint cookies and mint ice cream provided by Mabel’s Scoop Shop. This event is limited to 30 participants and is indoors and outdoors, June 3-August 26,  Mondays 2-3 p.m. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Storybook Tuesdays: It’s story time in the tree-shaded Woodland Gardens. Sit around story stumps and enjoy tales about butterflies, bees, frogs, trees, flowers and other garden friends, and snack on cheese crackers provided by Downtown Books. Afterward, root a plant to take home to your garden. This programs is outdoors, weather permitting, June 4-August 27, Tuesdays, 10-11 a.m. All ages are welcome (accompanied by an adult).

The Tale of Peter Rabbit: Hop over to see this children’s play at The Elizabethan Gardens and meet lovable Peter Rabbit in this one-act musical play. Come early and enjoy a stroll through The Gardens prior to the performance. Performances are Wednesdays and Thursdays at 9:30 a.m., June 19 to August 15 on The Overlook Terrace in The Elizabethan Gardens, Wednesdays 9:30-10:30 a.m. This program is for all ages and is free with garden admission, Thursdays 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Tea with the Queen: Have an audience with Queen Elizabeth I in the beautiful setting of The Elizabethan Gardens where you will enjoy her Majesty’s sumptuous desserts, refreshing iced tea and delightful antics. The Queen’s tea also includes admission to The Gardens. 24-hour advance reservations required. Tea is served Thursdays on June 27; July 11,18 and 25; and August 1,8 and 15 from 2-4 p.m. Tickets are $22 for adults and $11 for youth (7-18 years). For tickets, cal (252) 473-3234 or visit www.elizabethangardens.org

Fragrant Fridays: Engage young senses in discovering a diversity of plants by touching, smelling, hearing, tasting and seeing in this one-hour discovery for you and your child. In addition to exploring with their senses, all participants will plant something to take home. This program takes place outdoors, weather permitting, June 7-August 30 on Fridays, 10-11 a.m. It’s designed for ages 6-14 (accompanied by an adult).

Ghost Fleet Dive Charters

  • 219 Thicket Lump Drive, Thicket Lump Marina
  • Wanchese
  • (252) 202-1784

Ghost Fleet Dive Charters offers dive trips in the waters off the Outer Banks, long known as the Graveyard of the Atlantic for the numerous shipwrecks. A trip with Captain Gene Berry could include one of many shipwrecks, including several U-Boats that were sunk off the coast during WWII. Or they’ll take you to some of their new discoveries that have never been fully explored. The captain knows where the best conditions are located daily, depending on visibility, currents and weather, and his experience will lead you to the best trip for your chosen day. They supply certified dive masters to assist divers. The dive boat Just 4 Diving is docked at Thicket Lump Marina in Wanchese.

Grandpa’s Shrimping and Crabbing Tours

  • 708 Harbor Road, Broad Creek Fishing Center
  • Manteo
  • (252) 473-1475, (866) 473-1475, (252) 305-8862

See how the local seafood is caught. On this tour, the captain pulls a small, commercial-type shrimp net behind the boat. Passengers get to sort the catch and examine the shrimp, fish and crabs that are harvested — and they get to take home anything that’s of legal size. This is a fantastic, hands-on experience for all ages and a great way to learn about life in the sea. Outer Banks Cruises/Captain Johnny Dolphin Tours is the booking agent for this tour; call them and they’ll help you arrange your tour.

Island Farm

  • 1140 U.S. Highway 64
  • Roanoke Island
  • (252) 473-6500

Roanoke Island’s Island Farm is a re-creation of the Etheridge family’s 1850s Roanoke Island working farm. Visitors feel as if they’ve stepped back more than 150 years as they explore the farm and see interpreters dressed in period attire carrying out the daily activities of the time – tending animals, blacksmithing, hoeing corn, doing laundry, making corn cakes. Hands-on activities and demonstrations may include woodworking, textile work, cooking demonstrations, ox-drawn wagon rides, 19th-century toys and games and farm and garden work. Visitors take self-guided tours of the Etheridge House and Farm, interacting with interpreters along the way. Activities vary daily and by season and are weather dependent. Special events are held here several times a year. Standard admission costs $6 per person, with children 5 and younger admitted for free. After opening day for the season, which was April 3, 2013, hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday to Saturday, until closing day on November 30. Note that they’re closed on Thanksgiving Day.

It’s Royalty Salon and Spa

  • 205 Budleigh Street
  • Roanoke Island
  • (252) 473-2209

It’s Royalty is a full-service hair salon and a spa that specializes in bridal services. If you need wedding services, call Linda at (252) 305-4295. It’s Royalty offers full hair services as well as manicures, pedicures, facials and massage.

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