While soaking up the sun from your cozy spot on the sand is always encouraged, you may be looking to try something new on this year’s summer vacation. From surfing to sailing and everything in between, Wrightsville Beach offers exciting and active water adventures the entire family will enjoy.
For a few ways to add adventure to your island getaway, dive right into these six unforgettable activities for a day on Wrightsville Beach’s crystal blue waters:
Let an experienced captain show you the ropes with a private sailing lesson or charter on the calm waters of the Intracoastal Waterway and Banks Channel. Head to Wrightsville Performance Sailing to grab a line during your private sailing class, or kick back and relax with your favorite beverage during a sunset sail. Learn nautical terminology, sailing theory, basic knots, sailboat maneuvers and more at Blockade Runner Sailing School, one of only four ASA-certified sailing schools in the state. Or, learn more about the natural history and ecology of Wrightsville Beach’s waterways with a guided tour to Masonboro Island Reserve from Wrightsville Beach Scenic Tours. You’ll even stop along the way to catch a glimpse of the local wildlife. End the day with a relaxing sunset cruise on Soundside Adventures’ "Carolina Runner" catamaran.
Paddle like a Pro
Take in unmatched views of Wrightsville Beach and the surrounding sound with a stand-up paddleboard (SUP) adventure with Wrightsville SUP. Book a private lesson for the whole family to try out the fun and easy activity with a skilled instructor or rent a few boards and paddle out on your own. Savor scenic views with a guided SUP tour through Wrightsville Beach’s waterways with Epic Excursions. Or, end the day with a guided SUP excursion with Cape Fear Paddleboarding to watch the sun set over Wrightsville Beach’s scenic salt marsh.
Hook, Line & Sinker
Fishing enthusiasts will want to explore the open waters with one of Wrightsville Beach’s private fishing charter companies. Perfect for anyone from experienced anglers to kids, an experienced captain will help you find the perfect spot to catch Spanish and king mackerel, mahi-mahi, sailfish and more. Land lovers can also cast a line off the Crystal Pier or Johnnie Mercers Pier, the only concrete pier on the North Carolina coast, while taking in scenic Atlantic Ocean views.
Keep on Kayakin’
For a relaxing day on the water, rent kayaks for the whole family and paddle out to Bank’s Channel or through the salt marshes lining the Intracoastal Waterway. With single or tandem kayak rentals from Soundside Adventures, you’ll be on the water in no time. Or, set out on a guided kayak tour with Wrightsville Kayak Company to discover local wildlife and undisturbed beauty at Masonboro Island Reserve.
Recognized as one of the best surfing towns in the world and the birthplace of surfing in North Carolina, Wrightsville Beach is the perfect place to catch a wave. No matter your age or skill set, a private surf lesson from Indo Jax Surf School or Sean’s Private Surf Instruction will have you shredding the shore in no time. Kids will love surfing day camps with WB Surf Camp, where professional instructors will help them make lasting memories on the water.
Under the Sea
Ready to take your adventure underwater? Gear up for a diving excursion to explore the variety of reefs, ledges, shipwrecks and underwater habitats located within just miles of Wrightsville Beach’s shore. Set out on a private charter with one of the area’s diving companies to search for giant prehistoric Megalodon teeth, or discover the Alexander Ramsey, a liberty ship sunk purposely as an artificial reef. Keep your eyes peeled for the nearly 40-foot long paddlewheel shaft of the Fanny & Jenny, a London-built ship purchased for blockade running in December 1861 and run ashore by the USS Florida near Masonboro Inlet in 1864.
Looking for other ways to stay active beyond the water? Check out more outdoor experiences and water activities.