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No need for a rainy day to dampen the fun on Ocracoke Island. These rainy day activities will ensure that vacationers of all ages will have a blast without the beach.
Historic Sites and Museums
Enjoy a little local education on the southern Outer Banks' history and culture with these unique sites on Ocracoke and Hatteras Islands.
Ocracoke Preservation Museum - This unique little museum features a nice selection of local artifacts, a video on the famed Ocracoke Brogue, and a research library with shelves of historic artifacts from local villagers. The museum is free to all patrons, although donations are always welcome.
Ocracoke Island Visitor Center - Located adjacent to the Cedar Island / Swanquarter ferry docks, the Visitors Center is a must-stop for all island information. Friendly staff are on hand to answer questions, and the museum is well stocked with maps, fliers for local businesses and activities, and unique Ocracoke gifts and books.
Teach's Hole Blackbeard Exhibit - This museum features a slice of pirate history on the Outer Banks, and for $4, patrons can wander through the unique exhibits that showcase Ocracoke's unique pirate legacy. The gift store with all-things-pirate will also be a favorite shopping spot for kids.
Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum - Take the free ferry to Hatteras Village to visit the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum, which is located just yards away from the ferry terminal docks. Stocked with artifacts from the Outer Banks' centuries of shipwrecks, this free museum also features regular special programs, including lectures and classes, for patrons who want to learn more about the deep maritime cultures of Ocracoke and Hatteras Islands.
Frisco Native American Museum - During a day trip to Hatteras Island, head south from the ferry terminal and make a stop at the Frisco Native American Museum. This longstanding museum has shelves of exhibits from local, regional, and even national Native American tribes, as well as an extensive gift shop and adjacent nature trail.
Ocracoke Island Area Activities
A rainy day on Ocracoke Island provides the perfect excuse to kick back and relax. Enjoy these low key activities which are designed to put visitors in a vacation state of mind.
Yoga and Fitness - Angie's Gym on Ocracoke Island offers week-long memberships for visitors who want to stick to their fitness schedules, even when on vacation. The regular yoga classes are also acclaimed by visitors and locals alike for their casual and relaxing, yet challenging, format.
Ocracoke Spas - Contact Ocracoke Massage or the Stillwater Spa and Wellness Center for a decadent and refreshing spa day. Both establishments offer Swedish and deep tissue massages, as well as an array of other services for stressed clients who need to relax.
Crafts and Coffee - Enjoy a hot cup of coffee while designing your own Ocracoke work of art at the Glass Bead and Java Junction. This cool Ocracoke shop offers jewelry-making supplies, free use of tools, or even jewelry-making classes for creative patrons.
Ocracoke Library - The Ocracoke Library may be small, but it features a wealth of books and magazines for visitors and library card holders to enjoy. The Friends of the Library group also hosts an annual book sale on the porch for devoted beach readers. While there, take a peek at the adjacent Ocracoke Island School - one of the smallest but most acclaimed schools in North Carolina.
Ocracoke Island Galleries - There are about a half dozen art galleries throughout Ocracoke Village for window shoppers and art enthusiasts to enjoy. All of these galleries boast coastal inspired works in a range of mediums by famed local and regional artists.
Ocracoke Island Shopping and Dining
A rainy day is the perfect excuse to spend some hard-earned vacation dollars at the wealth of cool shops and restaurants that Ocracoke Village has to offer.
Gift Shops - There are plenty of gift shops on Ocracoke Island, found along NC Highway 12 and off the main drag on small side streets like Howard Street. These stores often have unique coastal treasures that are handmade and can't be found anywhere else along the Outer Banks.
Boutiques - Sample Ocracoke's bohemian and laid back style by popping into one of the island's many clothing boutiques. These small shops feature everything an islander needs for the beach, including suits, surf gear, and warm weather sundresses.
Book Stores - Ocracoke is home to the Books to be Red bookstore, while neighboring Hatteras Island features the famed Buxton Village Books, which is located in a historic and original Hatteras Island former residence.
General Stores - There are no major grocery stores on Ocracoke Island, but the small general stores on the island have everything vacationers need to whip up a family meal or two. These all-purpose stores also feature beach toys, fishing gear, souvenirs, and other Ocracoke Island staples.
Hatteras Landing - Take a free ferry ride to Hatteras Island to peruse the shops at Hatteras Landing. Featuring nearly a dozen boutiques, restaurants and attractions, this shopping center is conveniently located adjacent to the Hatteras / Ocracoke ferry terminal.
Restaurants - Despite its small size, there are more than 20 Ocracoke Island restaurants, take-out places, and stands, which makes the island a fantastic destination for foodies. Enjoy a long lunch that's packed with fresh seafood from the adjacent Pamlico Sound and Atlantic Ocean waters.
Happy Hours - Ocracoke is home to plenty of pubs and restaurants, including Howard's Pub which is one of the oldest restaurants on the Outer Banks. Stop by Howard's or the neighboring sports bar to enjoy a Happy Hour beer or cocktail, and enjoy the cool atmosphere, array of indoor games, and big screen TVs.