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Nags Head -> Ocracoke Village & back in 1-day: possible?

Seattle, Washington
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Nags Head -> Ocracoke Village & back in 1-day: possible?

Hi, I am trying to plan a trip to the Outerbanks during this coming President's weekend (Feb 14-16) and have the below itinerary -- I would really appreciate feedback from anyone who is familiar with OBX area or Norfolk/VAbeach!!

Feb 14 (Sat):

will begin journey at Norfolk, tour Norfolk a bit, drive past Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel & back for the experience (but not gonna visit eastern shore in depth), stop by and tour Virginia Beach, then make our way down to Nags Head. Stay at Nags Head

Feb 15 (Sun):

drive from Nags Head down to Hatteras, take ferry to Ocracoke Island, visit Ocracoke Village, and return to Nags Head in the evening/night. Stay at Nags Head again.

Feb 16 (Mon):

Visit sand dunes at Jockey Ridge State Park, then Wright Brothers National Memorial at Kill Devil Hills. Then make our way back to Norfolk in time for evening flight out of Norfolk Airport (~ 6pm)


My concerns:

1) Will it be reasonable (or is it too hectic) to make the Nags Head->Ocracoke Village->Nags Hill journey in one day, assuming we set off from NH latest by 10 am in the morning of Feb 15th, while taking into account that we might stop a few times along the way to see sights or take pictures?

2) If #1 is too hectic, then would it be a better option to stay overnight in Ocracoke Village or Buxton on Feb 15th (sun)? My main concern is we would like to have enough time on Feb 16th to visit the sand dune at Jockey Ridge and the Wright Memorial and also to make it back in time to the airport around ~6 pm for the flight out of Norfolk.

thanks, let me know if you have any advice!

Amissville, Virginia
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1. Re: Nags Head -> Ocracoke Village & back in 1-day: possible?

It all sounds doable depending on how long you linger along the way but my guess being the time of year and weather you will not linger long any where you go. The only glitch is catching the ferry as I think it only runs on the hour during the winter months . Call 1 800 by ferry to get up to date times .

It is about 1 ½ hr drive to the ferry from Nags Head , Not a lot open on Ocracoke this time of year so your shopping will be limited as well as Eating too as Howard’s is closed for the winter not sure who else is open at this point but you might try asking at Trade winds site below they have a message board


Nags Head, North...
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2. Re: Nags Head -> Ocracoke Village & back in 1-day: possible?

Jason's is on the left as you enter the village, and it's open in the winter - that may be about it. It is 1 1/2 hours to the ferry, 40 minute ferry ride, 20 minute drive to the village from the north end (where the ferry lands).

You might want to include Fort Raleigh, the Elizabethan Gardens and the NC Aquarium on Roanoke Island.

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3. Re: Nags Head -> Ocracoke Village & back in 1-day: possible?

We will be there in mid-April. Do things open by then?

Virginia Beach...
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4. Re: Nags Head -> Ocracoke Village & back in 1-day: possible?

I would say many places will be open. We have been there in March and April and found that some shops are still closed, but restuarants are up and running, although may have limited hours.

Kill Devil Hills
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5. Re: Nags Head -> Ocracoke Village & back in 1-day: possible?

A day trip to Ocracoke is definitely a reasonable plan and well worth the trip. If you were coming in the summer, the lines for the ferry can be quite long but the ferries run more often in the summer. Keep in mind that this time of the year, the ferry only runs "on the hour". Leaving about 9:30am would give you time to easily make the 11am ferry but don't stop a lot even then. If the weather is good, it's a beautiful 40 minute ferry ride. If you leave earlier or return earlier, you might want to see the Hatteras lighthouse in Buxton and there are a lot of great photo opportunities of birds and wildlife everywhere during the trip.

Being a local Outer Banker, I wouldn't waste my time in Virginia Beach but I'm prejudiced. Then you could do more here! The NC Acquarium on Roanoke Island is fun if you've got kids with you along with the other attractions you mentioned.


6. Re: Nags Head -> Ocracoke Village & back in 1-day: possible?

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