1. The Beach
Grab your beach chair and sunscreen because going to the beach is top on my list when visiting Wilmington, NC! There are several surrounding beaches by Wilmington, one of which is Wrightsville Beach.
I can’t get enough of the beach! Born and mostly raised in Florida, I feel I have a bit of “mermaid fever”! I crave and need to be by the ocean.
Wrightsville Beach is my favorite North Carolina beach and I usually grab a spot by the pier. There is a great place to park and restrooms near by. You might even get a “show”. Once, while at the beach with a friend, we were entertained by a couple of guys baton twirling! Yes, you read correctly…baton twirling! It was quite the entertainment. Also, many photo shoots are done by the pier. I love watching a good photo shoot!
2. Visiting Downtown
Visiting downtown Wilmington is second on my list because every single time I go, I find something new that I enjoy!
The horse and carriage rides trotting along charming cobble stone streets, enjoying my favorite ice cream along the Cape Fear River, a feel of town history that is preserved so beautifully…just a few of the reasons I love this quaint little downtown!
When you take a carriage ride, you will get a lovely history lesson of the town. I still remember learning that the reason pineapples were used on architectural detail of homes(on fences, gates, doors, etc.), it was meant to symbolize hospitality. It let visitors (mostly sea men) know they were welcome and even might have a room to stay in while in town.
Now, when we have a new neighbor, I bring over a pineapple for a welcoming gift…because of the symbol it represents and because they are delicious!
Cape Fear River
There are many places to shop in Wilmington, but my favorite boutiques are Island Passage and Return Passage located downtown!
These sister boutiques are both moderately priced, however, I have found the best deals at Return Passage. Here is a link to their shop addresses and phone numbers…Return Passage/Island Passage.
On my last visit to Wilmington I went shopping in both shops with my daughter. We both found dresses and took advantage of their sale…bought a crochet dress for $15 and got a skirt for free! Love steals and deals like this one! Their staff has always been friendly and helpful. You should definitely check them out when you are in Wilmington!
Indochine is an Asian fusion restaurant that is very well rated on several websites such as TripAdvisor and Urbanspoon. Great food and atmosphere! My youngest daughter loved feeding the fish in their coy pond out back!
My favorite little ice cream shop is Kilwins! Love, love, love their freshly made waffle cones and fudge brownie is my favorite flavor with salted caramel coming in as a close second!
4. Art and Artists
I love visiting local artist shops and street vendors! Beautiful ocean photography, paintings, and even handmade candles and jewelry can be found all over Wilmington.
Local musicians play in various places like on one of the side streets downtown or even in a local book store like in Old Books on Front Street.
We were book shopping for my daughter, book lover extraordinaire, in this used book store when we stumbled across a talented pianist. James Jarvis is his name. You will find him playing his original music at this bookstore on Sundays. He told us the book store was a little more laid back, as a posed, to his more formal performance settings…like at a restaurant. He has the option to a take a break once in awhile to have a conversation, like he did with us that day. It was very nice to roam the book store while listening to him play, beautifully if I might add!
I have been visiting Wilmington, NC. for over ten years now. Sometimes with just a friend, alone with my husband, or with the whole family. Young or old, Wilmington has something for most anyone. So, if you love the ocean, a quaint little downtown atmosphere, shopping, eating, or enjoying local artists you’ll want to pay a visit to Wilmington, NC. Happy travels and remember Travel’s A Dance Away…TADA!