If you’re looking for a new and exciting way to spend your holiday season, plan a getaway to the coast. From the state’s most popular holiday flotilla to seaside holiday shopping at its best, it’s impossible to not feel the season. While a holiday at home is most likely your tradition, the holiday season at Wrightsville Beach, N.C. is sure to dazzle all who visit.

Turkey TrotWrightsville Beach Turkey Trot participants

Burn off those pre-Thanksgiving calories with the annual Wrightsville Beach Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving Day. This race includes a 5k run or a one-mile walk around the Wrightsville Beach Loop, along with prizes, food and fun for participants and spectators alike. This just might become your new favorite holiday tradition!

Holiday Flotilla

To shake up your holiday experience and celebrate a non-traditional Thanksgiving, come out to the North Carolina Holiday Flotilla at Wrightsville Beach on Nov. 24-25. Voted a Southeast Tourism Society Top 20 Event, this weekend-long celebration culminates with a lighted boat parade and fireworks along the Intracoastal Waterway unlike any other holiday parade you’ve experienced. 

Holiday Shopping, Coastal StyleHallelu gift card ribbon

Wrightsville Beach is one of the only North Carolina beaches with a vibrant shopping scene including chic boutiques, artisanal jewelry shops and more. Take your holiday shopping to the next level at one of the island’s fabulous stores like Hallelu, the largest fashion boutique on the island, or The Workshop, a concept store selling unique jewelry and coffee. The island is also home to Redix, Inc., a Wrightsville Beach staple, and Annex Surf Supply, voted one of the 22 Best Surf Shops in the World by SurfCollectiveNYC.com.

Take a Scenic Tour

The holiday season isn’t just for festivities – it’s also a great time to escape the madness. Enjoy the gorgeous scenery of Wrightsville Beach and Masonboro Island with a scenic tour from Wrightsville Beach Scenic Tours, or grab a wetsuit and try surfing or standup paddleboarding. It’s always the right time to get out on the water!

The Swan Lake pergola at Enchanted AirlieBe Enchanted

Visit nearby Airlie Gardens during Enchanted Airlie and walk through more than one million lights, lighted displays and beautiful holiday flowers. This is another Southeast Tourism Society Top 20 Event that continues to please Wilmington area visitors year after year. Santa Claus himself will even make an appearance!