Every year we go to OBX to meet Stan's side of our family for a chill beach vacation and this year was so special!
With everything going on in the world, it was so good for us to *safely* travel from Austin to NC to a remote beach to spend some time with family (we hadn't seen them in almost a year so this was extra special) and be outdoors.
There's something about the sound and smell of the ocean that instantly calms both of us! We love it so much.
We typically stay pretty far south in the Outer Banks in a small town called Hatteras Village. The nice thing is there's hardly anyone there - especially in early September when everyone is back in school!
Hatteras Village is the farthest town south in the Outer Banks before you have to take a ferry to get to Ocracoke Island.
We went to Ocracoke Island one day this trip on a whim and had so much fun. The ferry ride over used to be about 30 mins but the sandbars have shifted quite a bit, making the ferries have to follow a wider path to avoid the shallow water. Now it's about 50 or so minutes but it's so worth it. The ferry ride is beautiful and so peaceful. You can take your car on (which we recommend if you have one with you) or a passenger ferry.
Fun fact: when we were growing up both of our families visited the Outer Banks but we had no idea! My family would typically go to Corolla, which is in the northern Outer Banks (this is where lots of the wild horses are!). When we met in college we couldn't believe we were so close and had no clue! We traveled down from New Hampshire and Stan's family from their home in North Carolina. Who knows, maybe we crossed paths before we met and had no clue!
Right by this gorgeous driftwood (which we're pretty sure was actually from a boat hull) I stepped on something that looked like a dark shell buried in the sand. Stan reached down to grab it and it turned out to be a huge crab. He gave us the "what for" and quickly ran back into the ocean. Poor guy had quite a nap-disturbance, ha.
If you're traveling to the Outer Banks anywhere near hurricane season (like in early September when we like to go), make sure you get travel insurance! We ended up very thankful for it in 2018 when a big hurricane came through and forced everyone to evacuate. Definitely make sure you have it if you're staying in hurricane season!
Some of our favorite places to eat around Hatteras Village are below!
Sugar Creek - this where we always stop before heading down to Hatteras! It's right at the beginning of the Outer Banks, so it's a great place to stop and grab a bite and use the restroom before making the rest of the trek down to your rental home!
We saw a boat go by on this ferry ride that was named "Mikayla Rae" - which is almost exactly how my name is spelled - and had to do a double take. It was so cool to see that!
These are the horses at Stan's dad and stepmom's farm. They are so sweet and always make me so happy when we visit! It's truly so peaceful here. And for this horse-lover, it's a little piece of heaven for sure.
Mik + Stan