Wilmington, NC has a wide variety of beaches to explore. Everything from a partying islander-vibe, all the way to deserted beaches where people cannot be seen for MILES, Wilmington has a beach for you. This guide is going to be a quick guide to get you closer to that perfect trip:


1. Wrightsville Beach (Click For Guide)

Wrightsville Beach is the de-facto beach of Wilmington. When most people talk about a Wilmington, NC beach, they are referring to Wrightsville Beach. Wrightsville Beach is considered the La Jolla of Wilmington:

  • Up-scale
  • Tightly controlled
  • Horrible Parking
  • Beautiful people and expensive property


2. Carolina Beach (Click for Guide)

Carolina Beach is an incredibly popular beach in Wilmington and is known for a laid-back islander vibe. On Carolina Beach, you will find:

  • Less crowded beach and less expensive beach
  • Good parking
  • The ability to 4×4
  • Plenty of places to eat, drink, and shop
  • Jimmy Buffet, drinking beer on the beach, and family friendly vibe


3. Topsail Island Beach Guide

Topsail Island (pronounced TOP-SOUL) is referred to as the “Mayberry By The Sea”.

  • A lot less populated and the ability to not be around people
  • The most family-friendly beach by far
  • If you’re interested in vacation rentals, real-estate isn’t expensive
  • ~45 minutes away from Wilmington, NC


4. Masonboro Island Guide (Click For Guide)

Masonboro Island is a nature preserve just below Wrightsville Beach.

  • MILES UPON MILES of no civilization and no-mans-land
  • Pristine beaches that have never been touched by developers
  • Sea turtle nesting and bird sanctuary
  • Difficult to get to but has some of the best waves in Wilmington, NC


5. Kure Beach

Kure Beach is located right near Carolina Beach and is known for:

  • Being a convenient drive from Wilmington, NC
  • Home to Fort Fisher and Zeke’s Island (A Kayaker/SUP parasdise)
  • Stricter land-use controls some homes tend to be bigger and up-scale
  • Civil War museum where the last battle of the Civil war was fought.