Book Direct, Why Should That Matter To You?

This person is booking a vacation on Book Direct day which is February 3rd 2021

Advantages of Booking Direct With Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates:

You might be wondering why you should book direct when there are so many online travel agencies with fancy online ads and tons of suggested listings. Here are a few huge benefits to booking directly with Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates: 

You will receive better rates and “from time to time” there are special offers by booking directly with us. It will be much easier to add different packages, add travel insurance, and filter your search. For instance, if you are looking for a home within a certain town, location, property type, or a home with specific amenities you can refine your search with the advanced search filter.

We offer more flexibility and an overall better booking experience when you book directly with us on our website. You will have direct access to our local staff that lives in the area and can offer knowledgeable tips and ideas about exploring the Outer Banks.

The best benefit of booking directly with Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is that you communicate with a live human so you will also get amazing one on one customer service while on your OBX Vacation, these are things that computerized OTA’s just can not match!

This is a frustrated woman trying to book a vacation using an online travel agency.

Things To Think About When You Do Not Book Direct:

When not booking directly with Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates not only do you not save money but you actually end up spending more! 

Online travel agencies are full of upcharges and fees, sometimes they are in plain sight and clearly explained but sometimes they are hidden and leave you feeling like a bait and switch just happened. That is no way to start your Outer Banks vacation!

Orange and pink color sky as the sunrises on the Outer Banks North Carolina with Jeanette's Fishing Pier in sight. Water a soft orange and pink glow along with the sand on the beach from the sunrise.

When you do not book directly you also miss out on the chance to learn about all the properties Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates has to offer in our inventory because OTA’s only highlight and feature a certain amount of beach homes or oceanfront condos for you to search.

We Have Made Booking Direct Easy!

Booking an Outer Banks Vacation Rental direct with Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is a simple process that we have worked very hard on making as streamlined as possible so you have the best user experience possible!

You can book direct with us using our desktop website or our mobile browser for those on the go or spur of the moment trips. Here you will find our powerful search feature that delivers your vacation rental search results quickly and efficiently. Our user-friendly layout means you can navigate through all of the different amenities you need in your vacation home as simple as clicking a drop-down from the menu and pressing search now.

Do you want to bring the family dog on your trip? No problem our website has plenty of choices. Need an oceanfront view to wake up to that beautiful ocean every morning? We have a search feature that covers that too! We encourage you to book your next family vacation directly on our website.

Whether you need to know about our check out procedures or want to know about what to bring you can find all the answers to your questions on our extremely detailed FAQ page, it gives you all info you will need so that you can feel confident in booking your Outer Banks vacation rental directly with us! We look forward to seeing you and your family on your next Outer Banks vacation!

 

Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is one of the most trusted vacation rental managers in the local area by growing into a market leader in the Vacation Rental and Sales Industry. Joe Lamb Jr. and his family have played a vital and intricate role in the Outer Banks Community for decades. 

Over the past 50+ years, Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates have worked diligently to help promote the Outer Banks for the amazing beach and family vacation destination that it is, helping to increase tourism in the area and grow our beautiful community.

Thanksgiving Gatherings on The Outer Banks

Exciting food and family gatherings are waiting for you. It is time to celebrate everything with friends and family by consuming more turkey, and pumpkin pie than anyone thought was humanly possible. It’s the time of the year to be thankful. 

An Outer Banks Thanksgiving may be the perfect beginning for a brand new family tradition if you’d like to find a great way to spend a holiday this year. Read below for further information about the OBX area and what the holiday season in the Outer Banks brings to the table. 

Before you plan your trip, don’t forget to check out our “Area Guide” section of our website.  The Things To Do page is filled with ideas and suggestions from a few different OBX areas, making it the ideal tool to plan your Thanksgiving family getaway!

OBX Vacation Rental Thanksgivings

The Outer Banks have been a holiday destination year after year for families and large groups of friends to gather at the beach. It’s a great way to reserve a vacation rental for a celebration surrounded by those you love for a long weekend away from work.

Thanksgiving with the family on the Outer Banks is an excellent way to start the holiday season. The weather in November is usually in the mid-60s is generally mild, and the night falls to a little cooler mid-50s. You may have a warm enough sunny Thanksgiving Day to relax on the beach most of the day. In this case, we advise planning your Thanksgiving meal ahead of time. 

Grocery Store Shopping or Restaurant Take Out

Complete Thanksgiving meals are sometimes available for ordering and pick up.

Take the guessing game out of your feast by ordering a full Thanksgiving dinner from a local OBX restaurant or grocery store. You can simply pick it up. Some foods have to be cooked and others are fresh. Full meals should be pre-ordered and advanced time limits are generally available before ordering. 

This is an excellent option if you do not have a lot of experience making a huge feast or want to make things simple for the family but still want to eat in private. Make sure to see the November 2022 hours of every restaurant or grocery store for additional information and ordering policy.

What To Expect At The Rental

Visiting our quiet and peaceful beaches to enjoy a holiday home in Outer Banks this turkey day? Our rentals are ideal for families, friends, and some even welcome the family dog!

Many of our rentals have kitchens that are large enough to make the whole family’s food; several turkey accommodating ovens and stoves, larger fridges for drinks and pies, and even an extra burner or two to create your own signature sides for all the family chefs and foodie travelers. 

With most homes having multiple levels, there’s also plenty of room for children to stay clear of the kitchen until the meal is ready.

Where To Find Thanksgiving Dinner In The Outer Banks

thanksgiving buffet in the obx (1)

For Thanksgiving on the OBX, we have suggested our dining recommendations below. We have covered you whether you are looking for a buffet dinner close to your vacation rental or a full-blown feast at a local restaurant this November.

Buffets

Thanksgiving annual buffets are sure to ease every pallet. Some seafood buffets in addition to favorites like crab legs, steamed shrimp, and more, offer traditional Thanksgiving food like turkey and ham! You’ve also often got homemade desserts, greens, sides, soups, and salads at some buffets!

We recommend calling your favorite seafood buffet to see if they have a Thanksgiving buffet this year!

Thanksgiving Menus

Would you like to visit a Thanksgiving 2022 OBX restaurant? Several restaurants of Outer Banks are open at Thanksgiving for lunch or dinner. Some of them will offer special Thanksgiving menus, of which many are well known for their foods and treats among visitors and locals on the Outer Banks. 

For details on menus, reservations, and availability, visit each restaurant’s website. You may be able to have Thanksgiving dinner during another day if your favorite OBX restaurant is not open on Thanksgiving Day. 

Call or check this list compiled by the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau for more turkey day restaurant openings.

Book Your Thanksgiving Rental Today!

Year after year, the Outer Banks have been a holiday destination for families and big groups of friends on the shore. It’s the ideal chance to book a holiday rental for a celebration that you love for that long weekend away from work!

Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is one of the most trusted vacation rental managers in the local area by growing into a market leader in the Vacation Rental and Sales Industry. Joe Lamb Jr. and his family have played a vital and intricate role in the Outer Banks Community for decades. 

Over the past 50+ years, Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates have worked diligently to help promote the Outer Banks for the amazing beach and family vacation destination that it is, helping to increase tourism in the area and grow our beautiful community.

The Best Ice Cream in the Outer Banks

Nothing says “summer vacation” better than enjoying an ice cream cone while walking on the beach. A calm breeze and a sweet taste go great together! There are plenty of places in the Outer Banks to grab ice cream, frozen yogurt or even shaved ice. From Corolla to Nags Head, you’ll find no shortage of places to try your favorite kind of ice cream. To enjoy your next North Carolina vacation to the fullest, here are our top 5 best places to grab the best ice cream in the Outer Banks.

The Best Ice Cream in the Outer Banks – Our Top Picks

A bowl containing 3 scoops of strawberry ice cream and mint in the background as a garnish
A bowl containing 3 scoops of strawberry ice cream and mint in the background as a garnish

Big Bucks Ice Cream

Close to Kitty Hawk’s public beach access point, Big Bucks Ice Cream is a popular hot spot for ice cream in the Outer Banks. Here, you can pick up your favorite ice cream and walk right over to the beach, all within the span of a few minutes. Don’t just get ice cream here. Big Bucks has a great selection of coffee, homemade cakes, smoothies and chocolate treats as well to enjoy.

Donutz On a Stick and Ice Cream

A plate filled with freshly made donuts topped with powdered sugar and served with a small bowl of vanilla ice cream.
A plate filled with freshly made donuts topped with powdered sugar and served with a small bowl of vanilla ice cream.

Just as the name implies, Donutz on a Stick and Ice Cream is the perfect place to grab a sweet tasting dessert creation. This family-friendly shop is run by members of the Williams family and caters to people of all ages. Find ice cream and a full lunch or dinner menu. Grab the family and head on over to enjoy classics such as Avalanches, homemade milkshakes, donut sandwiches and homemade ice cream in a cup or a cone.

Winks Ice Cream

This is an ideal place for those who want to grab ice cream, especially if you are a fan of Blue Bunny ice cream. With friendly staff ready to help, at Winks Ice Cream you will find delicious ice cream creations and plenty of milkshake options to choose from. It is a great place to sit down, enjoy a cone or a shake and talk amongst the locals.

Higher Grounds – Coffee & Ice Cream

There is nothing that beats freshly brewed coffee and a scoop of ice cream. Higher Grounds is a shop that specializes in both. It is a dog-friendly establishment that offers hot and iced caffeinated drinks, fresh tea and baked goods such as bagels, muffins and various breads. You will also find popular dishes such as the vanilla and espresso milkshake that locals rave about.

Scoops Homemade Ice Cream

Three people holding ice cream cones together with different flavors of ice cream.
Three people holding ice cream cones together with different flavors of ice cream.

If you want traditional ice cream from a classic parlor, then this is the place for you! Scoops specializes in custom birthday cakes, specialty dessert dishes and of course, delicious ice cream cones. Each type of ice cream is made from unique and homemade recipes. Every scoop is made in small batches to make the flavor unforgettable. You’ll find fresh ingredients used such as real vanilla, fresh nuts and freshly chopped fruit.

Look forward to your OBX vacation with our top picks of the best ice cream in the Outer Banks. With plenty of ice cream options to choose from and even unique creations you simply won’t believe until you see it, the Outer Banks is a place to find the best ice cream in the country. Grab the family and enjoy a cone today.

 

Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is one of the most trusted vacation rental managers in the local area by growing into a market leader in the Vacation Rental and Sales Industry. Joe Lamb Jr. and his family have played a vital and intricate role in the Outer Banks Community for decades.

Over the past 50+ years, Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates have worked diligently to help promote the Outer Banks for the amazing beach and family vacation destination that it is, helping to increase tourism in the area and grow our beautiful community.

Top 5 OBX Local Secrets

It is no secret that the Outer Banks are full of attractions to visit. What is the point in visiting the OBX if you don’t stop for a great meal from a local restaurant or explore the aquarium? While there are plenty of places many tourists visit, there are a few local gems that few visitors get to see. Check out our top 5 OBX local secrets of the Outer Banks that you need to add to your to-do vacation list.

Top 5 OBX Local Secrets

Winged Horses of the OBX

Thanks to the Outer Banks Press, these majestic horses can still be found around the Outer Banks even after 15 years since they were first erected. Commemorating the 100th anniversary of the first flight by the Wright Brothers on the Outer Banks, these horses were installed between 2002 and 2004. Each of these statues are similar in body shape, but have all been individually painted by local artists, each showcasing their own personality. While some may have been removed, you can still see these painted horses outside of local restaurants, shops and schools.

Century of Flight Monument

The wright brothers having their first flight on a North Carolina beach.
The wright brothers having their first flight on a North Carolina beach.

Another monument dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the first powered flight by the Wright Brothers, the Century of Flight Monument is a must stop location for all aviation enthusiasts. It is a legacy to the beauty and mystery of powered flight, recognizing significant accompaniments, milestones and sacrifices given by men and women who have helped human advancement in the area of flight. It is located in the Town of Kitty Hawk.

Ashley’s Espresso Parlor

One of the top 5 OBX local secrets: a cup of freshly made Espresso coffee on a wooden table near the beach.
A cup of freshly made Espresso coffee on a wooden table.

If you love coffee, you need to stop at the best spot in town: Ashley’s Espresso Parlor. Located in Kitty Hawk, you can find what many locals consider to be one of the best coffee joints around the islands. Featuring in-house roasted coffee, local artwork, oceanfront views and known as a community hangout, there is no better place to grab your morning coffee than being around the locals.

The Little Red Mailbox of Hope

This small safe space is a must see for anybody visiting the Outer Banks. Inside the Little Red Mailbox of Hope, you will find a notebook containing letters, notes, thoughts and quotes all from visitors and locals alike. Its mission is simple: to write uplifting messages of hope and love to share with others. It is located near Kill Devil Hills and you can stop by to leave a little note of hope for random strangers who may need encouragement. It has become such a popular attraction, it has inspired others to put up little red mailboxes of hope of their own in 11 other locations including Nags Head, Kitty Hawk and more.

Jockey’s Ridge State Park

A man kite boarding on a local beach.
A man kite boarding on a local beach.

Known as the highest natural sand dune on the East Coast, you can also find one of the largest hang gliding schools located at Jockey’s Ridge. It is the best place in the Outer Banks to watch a sunset, hang glide or to fly a kite. It is a great place to visit if you want to get some fresh air. Whether you like hiking, paddling, picnicking, sand-boarding, windsurfing or just swimming, you’ll get that great outdoor space at Jockey’s Ridge.

When you come to visit the Outer Banks, don’t just visit the regular attractions most vacation-goers visit. Check out the top local secrets we mentioned and make your next Outer Banks vacation a memorable one.

 

Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is one of the most trusted vacation rental managers in the local area by growing into a market leader in the Vacation Rental and Sales Industry. Joe Lamb Jr. and his family have played a vital and intricate role in the Outer Banks Community for decades.

Over the past 50+ years, Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates have worked diligently to help promote the Outer Banks for the amazing beach and family vacation destination that it is, helping to increase tourism in the area and grow our beautiful community.

Fall on the Outer Banks – An Event for Everyone

Scene from Crabdady Festival, Sanctuary Vineyards, Jarvisburg.
Scene from Crabdady Festival, Sanctuary Vineyards, Jarvisburg.

Fall is the best time to be on the Outer Banks. Summer is wonderful, but when fall arrives the magic happens. The days are still warm but the summer heat has backed off a bit; ocean water temperature is very manageable and there aren’t quite as many people here as the summer, but still enough that all the businesses are open.

But what really makes fall so special was that’s when the event calendar explodes.

We’ve compiled a list of events through October and included some remarks about three of them.

Be sure to schedule a visit at one of our Joe Lamb, Jr. & Associates homes and check out all there is to do on the Outer Banks.

11th Annual Surfalorus Film Festival

surfalorus film festival logo 2022

September 18-21, 2022

Sponsored by the Dare County Arts Council, this three day film festival includes some great surf films from five minute shorts to feature length movies.

 

At various locations. Don’t forget to purchase your passes today. 

*Face masks are required for access to all Surfalorus venues due to the continue threat of COVID-19 and its variants.

CrabDaddy Wine/Beer Festival

picture showing 2022 crabdaddy wine and beer festivalSanctuary Vineyards, Jarvisburg

October 8, 2022

Wine, crabs and music. We probably don’t have to say much more than that. But just to make a visit even more enticing, the setting is beautiful undertone tall trees on the north end of the Cotton Gin in Jarvisburg and the event is very family friendly.

Grab your tickets today for general admission into this fun & exciting event. You can also get a VIP Table that includes: seating for 8, table service, 3 bottles of wine & a charcuterie board.

Events

WRV Outer Banks Pro Surf Contest

Jennette’s Pier

Nags Head

August 31- September 5, 2022

Outer Banks Stunt Kite Competition

Jockey’s Ridge State Park

Nags Head

September 9 – 11, 2022

Outer Banks Triathlon

Old Swimming Hole

Manteo

September 16-17, 2022

ESA-Eastern Surf Finals

Jennette’s Pier, Nags Head

Sept 18 – 24, 2022

Pridefest

Nags Head

September 16-18, 2022

Dare County Motorcycle Toy Run

September 24, 2022

Outer Banks Jeep Jam

Soundside Event Site

Nags Head

October 7 – 9, 2022

Outer Banks Bluegrass Festival

Roanoke Island Festival Park

October 20-22, 2022

Outer Banks Parade of Homes

October 6-9, 2022

First Friday

September 2, 2022

Manteo

Duck Jazz Festival

Town of Duck

October 8-9, 2022

Wings Over Water Wildlife Festival

October 18-23, 2022

Fall Restaurant Week

Outer Banks

October 10-16, 2022

Outer Banks Seafood Festival

Soundside Event Site

Nags Head

October 15, 2022

The NC VIP Fishing Tournament

Jennette’s Pier

Nags Head

October 17-19, 2022

Brewtag

Soundside Event Site

Nags Head

October 22, 2022

Roanoke Island Maritime Museum Boat Show

Roanoke Island Maritime Museum

Manteo

October 29, 2022

Harvest HayDay

Island Farm

Roanoke island

October 29, 2022

As you can see the Outer Banks is full of events this fall and we can’t wait to hear which event or events you went to. If you’re still searching for an Outer Banks vacation rental to stay in this fall, give us a call today!

Read All About It – “The Outer Banks”

cute happy kids -boy and girls- read books on beach, family vacation concept

One of the best things about vacationing on the Outer Banks is sitting back, relaxing, and reading a good book by the sea. But have you ever read a book about the Outer Banks while enjoying your OBX vacation? We at Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates would love to share with you books about the Outer Banks for adults and kids too.

Children’s Books

Book cover of Tammy Turtle by Suzanne Tate showing a sea turtle entering the ocean
Photo Courtesy of Suzanne Tate

Tammy Turtle – This book is great for kids who want to learn more about loggerhead turtles and how to help protect them. The author, Suzanne Tate, a local resident of the OBX has many other books about the beach and nature that will make your kids want them all. Other books include Salty Seagull, Sammy Shrimp, Spunky Spot, and Flossie Flounder. With so many books to choose from, which would be your favorite?

 

picture of a dog surfing surf dogs beach safety tips
Photo Courtesy of Kim Mosher Designs

Surf Dog’s Beach Safety Tips – If you have young children and are looking for a way to help them learn about beach safety, this book is for you! Surf Dog’s Beach Safety Tips is a book that will help them learn about safety when on vacation. The author is Kevin Mosher, and his wife, Kim Mosher, did all of the illustrations in the book.

Picture of a black cat on a beach ball on the beach with sand dunes behind it
Photo Courtesy of Tamara Hoffmann Shipp

Bosley the Cat – Bosley the cat loves adventures and has two books in the series, The Bosley Books. The first book is Bosley the Beach Cat, and the other is Bosley the Pirate Cat. These books take place in the Outer Banks and are so much fun to read for kids. The author is Tamara Shipp and illustrated by Sarah Glaser.

Photo of two children sleeping in beds with the outer banks lighthouse in the background
Photo Courtesy of Adam Gamble & Mark Jasper

Good Night Outer Banks – This book is a great book to read at bedtime for the younger kids and highlights several locations on the OBX. Those locations include Wright Brothers National Memorial, Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Jockey’s Ridge State Park, and Duck Town Boardwalk. Written by Adam Gamble and Mark Jasper, this book will soon become a favorite for your kids every night!

Picture of book cover with young girl drawing and window in background showing people walking on the beach
Photo Courtesy of H.C. Friesen

Janey Olsen, Famous Artist of the Beach – This book was written and published by a long-time guest, H.C. Friesen. It’s based in one of our rental houses, unit 016, and back when it was yellow. This is a book to get and keep in your children’s book collection at home.

Photo of book showing a little feature of book with a picture of the Outer Banks and a picture of Unit 016

Adult Books

On This Day in Outer Banks History – This book is about the Outer Banks and how it’s so much more than a vacation destination. It tells the stories of the OBX and how amazing it is with all the history it holds. The author, Sarah Downing, is a former Joe Lamb Jr & Associates employee, and we couldn’t be any prouder of her success!

Hatteras Island, Keeper of the Outer Banks – Written by Ray McAllister, a regional author who visits the OBX often with this family. This book portrays the beauty and history of the Outer Banks and how it has remained like a secret vacation destination. He has another book about the OBX, Ocracoke, The Pearl of the Outer Banks, that you must also check out.

The Beach Lover’s Guide to the Outer Banks – If you’ve been searching for a guide on how to fall in love with the beach of the OBX, this is the book for you. Written by Tamara Shipp, you’ll find this series has two volumes. The first is The Beach Lover’s Guide to the Outer Banks Volume 1 focuses on Kitty Hawk, Kill Devil Hills & Nags Head. Volume 2 focuses on Avon, Buxton, and Hatteras.

We hope you enjoyed this fun blog post on books about the OBX as much as we did writing it. If you pick up one of these books while on vacation and want to share it, be sure to check out one of the Little Free Libraries around the Outer Banks. Staying in one of our OBX vacation rentals will have you wanting never to return home!

Birds of the Outer Banks: A Birding Guide

The Outer Banks is recognized nationally as one of the best birding locations on the East Coast. It is one of the many stops along the Atlantic Flyway, a well-known bird migration route. The OBX offers many trails to watch birds in their natural habitat as they stop along the shores of the Outer Banks. 

Bird watching has become a popular pastime on the Outer Banks for locals and visitors alike. It is so prevalent that a week-long annual birdwatching festival is held in the OBX every year. When you stay with Joe Lamb Jr, you can see what birding on the Outer Banks is all about. Spot birds you never would have thought you would have seen in your lifetime!

Birds of the Outer Banks

There are hundreds of different bird species that migrate above the coastal waters of the Outer Banks. Here are some types of birds you will encounter here on the OBX.

  • American Avocets-this shorebird is noticeable by its white and black plumage and upturned beak. They can often be spotted sweeping through the shallow waters as they search for food. They tend to visit the OBX year-round, especially during the breeding season.
  • American Black Duck-this bird is typically found among a mix of other waterfowl but can be easily spotted by the yellow bills of the males, the greenish bills of the females, and their shy personalities.
  • American Kestrels-also known as North America’s smallest falcon, the Kestrel can typically be found on the OBX during the fall migration and in the winter. It is noticeable due to its colorful appearance. The males can be spotted with their blue heads, red backs, and tails. The females are apparent by their red wings, backs, and tails. Look at natural perches as these birds can be seen feeding from a high spot.
An American Kestrel peering down inquisitively
An American Kestrel peering down inquisitively
  • American Oystercatchers-just as the name implies, the Oystercatcher can be found along the shore or on salt marshes, feeding on various oysters, mussels, or clams. These birds can be characterized by their colorful bills.
  • American Wigeons-this commonly found duck can be differentiated from most ducks by its small bill and by the white-colored forehead of the males. These birds can be found from October to April and can be seen feeding on small aquatic plants.
A flock of American Wigeons on the Outer Banks taking off into the air.
A flock of American Wigeons on the Outer Banks taking off into the air.
  • Black-bellied Plovers-this is a large Plover bird found in North America. Typically seen during the winter and the spring and fall migration, you can find this bird on grassy lawns and mudflats. They are characterized by their black and white breeding plumage and gray and white plumage during the rest of the year.
  • Brown Pelican-this is one of the most commonly seen birds on the Outer Banks. These large water birds are characterized by their large bills, dark body, and throat pouch which they use to typically scoop up small fish and crustaceans. Spot these birds gliding along the surf or in a squad, rising and falling with the waves.
A pair of Brown Pelicans floating in the waters of the Outer Banks.
A pair of Brown Pelicans floating in the waters of the Outer Banks.
  • Canada Goose-Canada geese are large water birds that can be seen flying around the OBX in a V-formation. These “honkers” migrate through the area yearly, characterized by their long necks, brown bodies, and white chinstrap.
  • Canvasbacks-this waterfowl can be differentiated from other ducks just by their long and sloping profile. Males are characterized by a red head, white body, and black crest.
  • Double-crested Cormorant-this large waterbird is known for its small head sitting on top of a kinked neck, hooked bills, and dark bodies.
  • Eastern Willet-these birds are a famous sight in the Outer Banks. They can be identified by their long bill, gray legs, and stunning white striped wings. They tend to frequent the mudflats or hang around shallow water where they constantly probe for food.
  • Eurasian Wigeons-these birds can be a rare sight in the Outer Banks. You can typically find them flying in a flock of American Wigeons. They are characterized by their rust-colored heads. They frequent the Outer Banks from October to late March.
  • Great Blue Heron-This large bird can typically be found wading through shallow water, scanning for prey. With a large wingspan, these birds can be spotted year-round on the Outer Banks, though not typically during the breeding season.
A Great Blue Heron, standing majestically as it watches its surroundings.
A Great Blue Heron, standing majestically as it watches its surroundings.
  • Great Egret-this large bird is distinguishable thanks to its sizable white body, yellow bill, and black legs. Typically, bird watchers can find this bird stalking the shores in a Heron-like fashion.
  • Gray Plover-don’t let the small size of this shorebird fool you. They are feisty and resilient little birds. This bird is characterized by its gray to grayish brown plumage. During the breeding season, a dark neck band will appear, though it will appear incomplete on females.
  • Laughing Gull-this is one of the most common gulls you can find in the Outer Banks. These birds are characterized by their white and gray bodies and loud and raucous calls.
A Laughing Gull prowling the shoreline of the Outer Banks.
A Laughing Gull prowling the shoreline of the Outer Banks.
  • Killdeer-this bird is a member of the plover family. They can be seen year-round near parking lots, campgrounds, or flats in the Outer Banks.
  • Mallard-this common duck is characterized by the male’s trademark green heads, black tail curls, and gray flanks. On the other hand, the females can be identified by their brown with orange plumage and black bills.
  • Northern Gannets-this exciting bird find can be found thanks to their black wingtips. They can often be seen diving into the ocean in large groups of over a hundred or more birds. 
  • Northern Harrier-this slender hawk is characterized by their owlish appearance. They have a v-shaped wingspan and long tail feathers. Males are identifiable due to their gray and white feathers, while females are classified by the brown plumage.
  • Northern Pintail-this is another common duck found in the Outer Banks. It is a medium-sized “puddle” duck, identified due to its long, thin neck. The “pin” tail is long in males.
  • Osprey-the Osprey is a raptor known to feed on live fish and for grabbing its prey by plunging directly into the water. These birds are characterized by their white bellies, black beaks, and “crooked-winged” flight.
A beautiful Osprey in flight over the Outer Banks.
A beautiful Osprey in flight over the Outer Banks.
  • Peregrine Falcon-another raptor found in the Outer Banks. It is one of the fastest flying birds alive. During the fall migration, you can find these birds characterized by their striped underbellies and dark heads.
  • Snowy Egret-this bird is noticeable because of its crazy head of feathers. They are characterized by their heron-like behavior and large snow-white bodies. You can catch them in shallow bays or tide pools where they can pursue fish.
  • Yellow-Rumped Warbler-this bird is known as the most common warbler in North America. They are easily identifiable by their bright yellow patch of feathers right above the tail, yellow streaks on their breast, and a yellow crown during the spring.
A small Yellow Rumped Warbler enjoying the warm weather on its perch.
A small Yellow Rumped Warbler enjoying the warm weather on its perch.
  • White Ibis-this bird is a definite must-see for all birdwatchers or visitors of the OBX. It is a medium-sized wading bird classified by its red face, red legs, red bill, and prominent black tips along the wings.

Birdwatching OBX FAQs

What is the best season for birdwatching?

What month is best for bird watching on the OBX? It depends on the migration paths of birds. Typically, the best time to go birding in the Outer Banks is March because this is when the spring migration officially kicks off. However, any month or season can be a great time to see birds as they make the OBX their home.

Best birdwatching locations on the Outer Banks?

Where is the best place to watch birds on the Outer Banks? Several spots along the OBX allow you to break out the binoculars and watch these migrating birds without disturbing them.

North Carolina Birding Trail

This comprehensive network of trails spans the state, from the mountains to the coast. There are many sites on the Outer Banks which have been recognized as portions of the birding trail, and many bird watchers consider these areas to be the best spots to find flocking birds.

  • The Elizabethan Gardens
  • Roanoke Island Marsh Game Land
  • Jockey’s Ridge State Park
  • Bodie Island Lighthouse
  • Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge
  • Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge
  • Cape Hatteras National Seashore
  • Currituck National Wildlife Refuge
  • Duck Town Boardwalk
  • Kitty Hawk Woods
  • Nags Head Woods Ecological Preserve

The Outer Banks is home to thousands of different species of birds passing through on their way to migrate south. With plenty of marshland and hundreds of miles of sandy shores, there are plenty of locations you and the family can stake out and watch the Outer Banks’ most popular feathered visitors in their natural beauty.

 

Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is one of the most trusted vacation rental managers in the local area by growing into a market leader in the Vacation Rental and Sales Industry. Joe Lamb Jr. and his family have played a vital and intricate role in the Outer Banks Community for decades.

Over the past 50+ years, Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates have worked diligently to help promote the Outer Banks for the amazing beach and family vacation destination that it is, helping to increase tourism in the area and grow our beautiful community.

The Famous Outer Banks

Sunrise from Nags Head Pier in North Carolina

The Outer Banks is well known worldwide (or just in the US) as the perfect location for a relaxing vacation. But did you know that it has also caught the eye of many series and movie directors who wanted to glimpse our beautiful islands? We at Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates wanted to share a pop-culture blog post on what famous movies and series have been filmed on the Outer Banks.

Movies

Small group of people watching movie outdoors at sunset. Open air cinema concept.

The Peanut Butter Falcon – This movie was filmed by local Outer Banks native Tyler Nilson and was out in 2019. This movie not only shows the beauty of our islands but also the dreams of one young man who dreams of becoming a professional wrestler. You can find The Peanut Butter Falcon on several streaming services & is out for you to add to your movie collection at home. 

Brainstorm – While this movie was not filmed entirely on the Outer Banks, it has one scene. That location was at the Wrights Brothers National Monument in Kill Devil Hills. Have you seen this film before?

Call Sign Romeo – Another movie that should be hitting the big screen that was filmed on the OBX is “Call Sign Romeo.” It’s based on events during a State Championship wrestler in 2016 at First Flight High School.

Nights in Rodanthe – This film is based on a Nicholas Sparks book that made people fall in love with the Outer Banks even more as soon as it hit the theaters. This was filmed in the Village of Rodanthe, which you can view as you drive down Highway 12.

Message in a Bottle – Another film based on Nicholas Sparks’ book is Message in a Bottle. This film was released in 1999 and featured Kevin Costner and Robin Penn. It’s a love story that will make you want to have a romantic getaway to the OBX soon.

TV Series’

A marina / boat dock in Outer Banks, NC at sunset. The sun is setting on anchored fishing boats.

Wicked Tuna: Outer Banks – You can catch this series on the National Geographic Channel or Discovery Plus. It follows local fishermen navigating out through the Oregon Inlet into the Atlantic Ocean, where they battle for Bluefin Tuna. This series has been on the air for over seven seasons and is still going. Become a fisherman for the day and try your luck at catching a Bluefin Tuna too!

American Horror Story: Roanoke – Roanoke was the 6th season of American Horror Story TV series. While the season was not filmed on the Outer Banks, it follows The Lost Colony’s true story. The original farmhouse they based their “farmhouse” on in the series is nearby Martin County, NC.

Outer Banks – As an honorable mention, Netflix’s hit TV Series Outer Banks is not filmed on the Outer Banks but is filmed on location in Charleston, SC. In this series, you will see where they make it seem like it takes 30 minutes to get from the OBX to our Capital City, Raleigh…but we must tell you it takes roughly 3 ½ hours. 

We hope you enjoyed this fun blog post on our “Famous” Outer Banks as much as we did writing it. Staying in one of our Outer Banks vacation rentals will have you feeling like a “star!” Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates hope you and your family experience the OBX just like the movie stars do.   


Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is one of the most trusted vacation rental managers in the local area by growing into a market leader in the Vacation Rental and Sales Industry. Joe Lamb Jr. and his family have played a vital and intricate role in the Outer Banks Community for decades.

Over the past 50+ years, Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates have worked diligently to help promote the Outer Banks for the amazing beach and family vacation destination that it is, helping to increase tourism in the area and grow our beautiful community.

Guide to Shelling in the Outer Banks

The Outer Banks’ is a treasure trove for avid seashell hunters. Out of all of the things to do in the Outer Banks, shelling is perhaps one of our most popular pastimes. How could it not be with miles of shoreline to explore and plenty of beaches left untouched? There are piles of shells just waiting to be found. Shelling in the Outer Banks is just a matter of being at the right place at the right time and just a little bit of luck.

OBX Shelling: Common Shells on North Carolina Beaches

You will find a variety of different shells washed up on our North Caroline beaches. Some are more common than others. Here are some of the common seashells on the OBX you will want to keep an eye out for.

  • Scotch Bonnet
  • Whelks
  • Olive Shell
  • Clam
  • Scallops
  • Moon Snails
  • Auger Shells
  • Keyhole Sand Dollars
  • Shark Teeth (bonus find)
Seashells washed ashore on a beach in the Outer Banks.
Seashells washed ashore on a beach in the Outer Banks.

Best Time to Go Shelling in the Outer Banks

Virtually any stretch of beach you visit can have an abundance of seashells. However, to give yourself a competitive edge, there are specific times you will want to take advantage of. This will help increase the likelihood of finding the rarest shells.

  • Early Morning. The earlier you can get to the beach, the higher probability you have of finding shells. This will give you the best chance to find rare shells before everybody else.
  • Low Tide. Perhaps the best time to find shells is just before and right after low tide. During high tide, a variety of shells are brought inland. This leaves these beautiful finds once the tide recedes. Be sure to check tide charts to ensure you visit a beach at the right time.
  • After a storm. A great time to find shells is after a storm. Typically, we recommend visiting the beach a day or so after a storm has passed. Furthermore, try to visit once the incoming waves have calmed down. Just a few steps in and you’ll notice a plethora of shells just waiting to be picked up!
  • Off-season. If you are worried about not having the opportunity to find shells while other tourists are in the area, come visit us during the off-season. Typically, the best times are between the months of October through April. There are better opportunities to find different shell varieties without having to compete with other people on the beach.

 Best Shelling on the OBX: How to Find Shells

woman walking on the beach shelling at low tide
A woman walking on the beach. shelling at low tide.

One of the best things about beaches on the OBX is that you can find plenty of shells practically anywhere. You just need to look under the right conditions.

  • Sift through the seaweed Another great way to find shells is to get your hands dirty and dig through some seaweed. Typically, when shells wash up on shore, they do not come alone. They tend to be mixed in with piles of seagrass and seaweed. Sift through these grasses and you may stumble upon a great shell find.
  • Explore shallow water. Just off the shoreline in approximately 1 to 2 inches of water or just a little past ankle deep is another potential trove for seashells. Use a small net to scoop out sections of sand and catch shells before they are scattered by other incoming waves. Using a net, you may come across periwinkles, scallops, clams and olive shelves if you are lucky.
  • Scour the inlets. Known for being close to the sound and ocean currents, inlets can be a great place to find a variety of shell varieties. Shelling can be very good by the Oregon Inlet beaches, and especially near the 4WD accessible beaches on the northern side of the inlet. Shelling is also good at the dredge spoil islands in the middle of the inlet, which can be reached by a boat or kayak. Typically, the best inlets to check for shells include:
    • Oregon Inlet-near the southern end next to the original Coast Guard Station to reach the beach on foot
    • Hatteras Inlet
    • Ocracoke Inlet

Best Shelling Beaches on the OBX

A Scotch Bonnet seashell on the outer banks
A Scotch Bonnet seashell on the outer banks.

On the OBX, there are some beaches that are better than others when it comes to shelling. Of course, these beaches can change on a whim, especially with the changes in ocean currents and sandbars constantly forming and dissipating. As a rule of thumb, try to stick with beaches without a known drop off. In addition, keep to south facing beaches where the ocean brings in more tropical shell species.

In general, we recommend staying away from beaches such as the northern Currituck beaches and the southern Outer Banks beaches. You will want to make sure you visit beaches such as the 4WD beaches of Carova, Coquina Beach, Irene’s Inlet, South Beach, Frisco Beach, Hatteras beach, Ocracoke Island, and the Outer Banks piers. Be sure to check out our Beach Access Map for a full list of accessible beaches. 

  • Coquina Beach-If you can’t resist a splash of color, then take a visit to Coquina Beach, located just along NC Highway 12. Approximately 8 miles south of Nags Head town borders and part of the Cape Hatteras National Seashore, shellers will find plenty of coquina clams along the sand of this beach. The best time to visit this beach is between late May to early September, where you can watch as thousands of coquinas shimmy their way to the surface before scurrying back beneath the sand.
  • Irene’s Inlet-This is another great beach to visit to find shells along the oceanside and soundside beaches. Here, shellers are likely to find Quahogs and scallops in heaps. These shells are perfect to find for those who want to make shell ornaments or containers full of previously found shells.
  • South Beach-This southern facing beach is the best place for shelling, hands down. Even though it is only open seasonally, South Beach  resides in the perfect area between Labrador and Gulf Stream currents. Typically, this beach is deserted so you will have plenty of chances to find those rarer shells such as conchs, whelks and even Scotch Bonnets.
  • Frisco Beach & Hatteras Beach-these beaches are classified by their shallow ocean floor, which allows shells from the ocean to wash up on shore without any scratches or abrasions upon their surfaces. Visit these beaches right after low tide to find some truly incredible finds such as augers, olive shells and whelks.
  • The Outer Banks Piersdue to the structure of the pier, small clusters of smaller shells can wash up on the shore. Keep in mind, virtually any pier along the Outer Banks will do. However, because of their accessibility, be prepared to look for shells through piles of shells that have already been picked through.

There is no better adventure to take with the family than shelling on the Outer Banks. Regardless of what kind of shells you find, we know you will have fun finding them. Shells can be great for home décor, showcasing a special memento from your vacation or to use for crafts. We know you’ll love it!

Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates is one of the most trusted vacation rental managers in the local area by growing into a market leader in the Vacation Rental and Sales Industry. Joe Lamb Jr. and his family have played a vital and intricate role in the Outer Banks Community for decades.

Over the past 50+ years, Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates have worked diligently to help promote the Outer Banks for the amazing beach and family vacation destination that it is, helping to increase tourism in the area and grow our beautiful community.

What To Pack In Your Beach Tote When Visiting The OBX

Do you have a family vacation planned to The Outer Banks of NC this year? If the answer is yes, then we here at Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates understand that spending a week or more sitting on the beach soaking up the rays is just what you need.  Staying in one of our oceanfront vacation rentals will keep the beach at your backdoor, but having the right things in your beach tote will allow you to enjoy your vacation even more. Let’s look at what we recommend you pack in your beach bag so you can have a fun family vacation when visiting the Outer Banks . 

Beach Tote Items:

Beach Towels

OBX beach accessories

When you are on vacation making sure you have packed everything before you leave home is essential. So be sure to pack a towel for everyone in your family whether you are going to sit in the sun or swim in the ocean. Bringing an extra towel with you is always a good idea especially if you have little ones. Having a beach towel with a different design for each family member can help keep track of whose towel is who’s. This can help keep you organized not only on the beach but in the laundry room to avoid any misunderstandings between siblings or cousins. For a more detailed search on rental properties offering in-home washer and dryers you use our amenities detail search feature.

Sunscreen

The sun in North Carolina is hot along the coast, so making sure sunscreen is in your beach bag is a must. Use a sunscreen that is designed for your beach activities such as waterproof, sport, high SPF, etc.). Dermatologists suggest that you use a sunscreen with at least 30 SPF while you are enjoying the sunshine. Be sure to reapply throughout your day as we don’t want you to ruin your vacation the very first day you’re here with a sunburn. If you happen to get a little more sun than you expected be sure to pack a bottle of Aloe Vera. To help cool the sunburn a little more, place the bottle of Aloe in the fridge and it will help soothe the burn a little better.


Mesh Bag For The Sand Toys

Summer in OBX

Anytime you go on vacation with kids, you have to bring a ton of sand toys with you. We understand bringing sand back with you into your vacation rental is not necessary and can be quite a hassle. Packing a mesh bag such as a laundry bag or a bag specifically for beach toys can help eliminate the mess. Just throw the sandy toys into the bag, give it a good shake or two and leave the sand behind at the beach.

Water Resistant Phone Pouch or Plastic Bag

Between the water, sun and sand, the beach is filled with many things that can damage your phone. Bringing a water-resistant pouch to the beach can be a lifesaver for many. If you come on vacation and realize you don’t have one, a sandwich bag or resealable bag will do the same as the phone pouch. They will keep your phone protected from the elements at the beach and you can even use it while it’s in the bag or pouch.  This way you can keep in touch with family members, coordinate meeting times, and order pick-up or delivery meals while sitting in your beach chair without having to worry about your phone being damaged.

Books & E-Books

Enjoying a Book on OBX

Be sure to pack a book or two when preparing to visit the Outer Banks this summer.  If digital books are more your thing then take a moment and download a few new book releases to your favorite e-reader before you arrive and be certain to bring your power cord. You don’t want to be stuck without being able to power-up your e-reader halfway through.


Beach Spike for Drinks

One thing that is often missed when packing items to go inside their beach bag is something to keep your drink sand-free. You can purchase a beach spike from any local beachwear store on the Outer Banks. With a beach spike, you can rest assured that your drink will be safe from the sand. You may often find them that include a place for your cell phone or sunglasses and your drink.

A Little First Aid Kit

When you are on vacation, having kids means that someone will get hurt or injured even on the beach. Having a little first aid kit with shells that can be broken along the shoreline or kids just being kids is a must. You can use a waterproof reusable cosmetic bag and add band-aids, Neosporin, aloe, burn cream, ace bandage, Benadryl, Motrin, or Tylenol. Just be sure to have enough for a quick dosage before heading back to your vacation rental for the day.


Sand-Free Hack

This is one item that you may not have thought about, but it is a must whenever you visit the Outer Banks. Whether you are staying in a vacation rental or you decided to drive your car to the beach access, sand will be all over you when you leave the beach. So, bringing baby powder in your beach bag will magically get the sand off of your body without irritation and leave a nice scent too. This is perfect for everyone in the family and not just the kids. 

Vacationing With Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates

There are many other things that you can pack into your beach tote, but these are the must have items for your next vacation. For a full list of all the items we suggest to bring on your next visit please check out the vacation packing section of our website. Out of an abundance of caution we also direct you to stay informed about health and safety updates due to COVID-19 before you visit. Please take a moment to review the latest area travel status for the Outer Banks.

Joe Lamb Jr. & Associates, a trusted name in Outer Banks rentals for over 50 years with the largest selection of quality vacation homes to choose from. If you haven’t made your reservations for your vacation, then check out all of our outer banks vacation rentals today. We can’t wait for your family to come and vacation with us!