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Carolina Beach, NC

leroy, ohio
Level Contributor
125 posts
2 reviews
Carolina Beach, NC

We have planned a vacation this year in August to Carolina Beach. Any input as far as restaurants? We usually travel to OBX, but this year thought we would try something different. In OBX we usually went to Jimmy's which is a seafood buffet all you can eat. Anything like that in Carolina Beach? Also any input on the beach would be great. Like how is the water and sand? We have younger kids (9 and 6), just curious about the undertow. I have read it is pretty bad. Again any input would be great. Thanks!

Any Beach
Destination Expert
for Myrtle Beach, North Myrtle Beach, West Virginia
Level Contributor
11,906 posts
156 reviews
1. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

Good choice in picking Carolina Beach!! We haven't been in a few years, so not sure if there are any new resturants there to mention. Don't recall any buffet. At the top left of this page...look for "Resturants"...that will show most of them, the ones I would recommend anyway. And...to the lower left on this page is "Hotels around Carolina Beach" (or have you already picked a hotel?) Not sure about the undertow. I know they have had issues in the past, but its not always a problem. Also, be sure to look at the Kure Beach forum..for resturants and things to do. It neighbors Carolina Beach to the south (I think of that as one whole area) We stayed at Ocean Dunes one year. Loved it. Big Daddys resturant is in Kure, right across the street from the Pier..which your kids will love!! Also the NC St. Aquarium is in Kure, as is Ft. Fisher....and the Ferry you can ride over to Southport. A must for your kids too! Have fun!!

North Carolina
Level Contributor
2,864 posts
64 reviews
2. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

Beaches are sloped and surf is choppy with pretty strong currents and undertow. With a 6 and 9 year old, you'll have to really keep an eye on them when they are in the water.

1 post
1 review
3. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

We live in Canada (French Canadian) and in July we return to Carolina Beach for the second consecutive year. When we went last summer, we loved it!

And since we want to return to this place for our vacation. We found our place for family holidays.

I have two boys and last summer they were 3 and 5. The beach is perfect for everyone. Not many people so kids can run and play without disturbing others. The ocean allows us to go surfing and body surfing and no danger to young children. I've never had to worry about seeing them play in the ocean and the beach.

Of course, we rented a house and we were on the beach in front of the house. We were walking distance from the pier and amusement rides. So I can talk about that part and I do not know if it's like that everywhere.

We talked with people living in North Carolina last year who used to go to the OBX and they told us they came to Carolina Beach because the beach is safer than in the OBX (ocean and sharks).

The Aquarium and Fort Fisher are good choices with the children.

Have a great vacation!

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Level Contributor
4 posts
61 reviews
4. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

we went in october 2011 and we could not find any place with a buffet. They are some places towards wilmington that do have buffets. The best place we found to eat at in carolina beach was Bowman's seafood and uncle vinny's. They are very reasonable and friendly. They also deliver which helps and have fast service in deliverly. Bowman's seafood has awesome fried oysters and seafood platters. They have some good side items like corn nuggets. I hated oysters but after eating fried oysters from bowman's that is now the only way i'll eat oysters. Uncle vinny's has awesome philly cheese steak made with homemade italian bread and delicious homemade sangria. The best ive ever had. Micheal's seafood also has a great steamed seafood platter made for 2 people that is delicious. My husband ate that platter all by himself. It has so much on it is a true test when one person can eat it all by themselves. I had a shrimp/scallop linguine something like that and made with wine and garlic. Also the best ive had. But a little warning do not get tricked by some of the so called specials that some of the restaurants post on their signs. Especially steer clear of Harbor Masters. Read my review of that place. Hope you all have fun. We sure did

c c
clayton, nc
1 post
5. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

Carolina Beach - My husband and I just went to Carolina Beach for the day yesterday and everything was beautiful EXCEPT there is a very large slope into the water. I am used to Myrtle Beach where everything is flat and you just walk right into the water where it slowly gets deeper. At Carolina Beach at high tide, the waves are crashing very hard into the surf at the bottom of the slope. I like to put my chair at the edge of the water to stay cool, but I was constantly getting hammered by waves, so needless to say, I didn't like that. We also tried to take a walk down the beach but we were constantly on that slope, and today our hamstrings are killing us and we can hardly walk. For me, the water is the attraction and I didn't enjoy the type of beach at Carolina Beach. I wouldn't let my children out of my sight if I were you, especially at high tide. BTW, we ate at Fish Bites for lunch. No frills, great food, great service. I would definite look at a flatter beach, however.

Western Ireland...
Level Contributor
292 posts
12 reviews
6. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

Sounds like the beach hasn't changed since we were there several years ago. I too didn't like the sloped beach and pounding waves. I agree, don't let your kids out of your sight! You can always drive 40 minutes North to Wrightsville beach or an hour south to Ocean Isle beach. Both beaches are wide and flat, great for kids or just sitting in your chair.

Carolina Beach
Level Contributor
51 posts
7. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

Beach conditions vary from day to day and block to block. This video was shot last week in CB:


Morgantown, West...
Level Contributor
3 posts
145 reviews
8. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

Returned from there on June 30, 2012. I suggest going elsewhere. (Topsail is good.) The beach nearly disappears at high tide - maybe 10 feet wide. It slopes steeply into the water, so the waves break right on the edge. No body surfing. Moreover, we we have been to beaches from Florida to New Jersey, and have never been made to feel more unwelcome by locals. The residents at Pelican Watch were just awful. Bryant Realty was also unhelpful. We called them with problems and the answer was always the same: You are on your own, we can't help you. They would not lift a finger.

Those experiences aside, NC Aquarium was worth the time and cost. For resteraunts, Uncle Vinney's was very good, but Bowman's not so much. We also enjoyed some things in Wilmington: Riverwalk, Battleship, and a very good German Resteraunt.

Edited: 02 July 2012, 01:29
Level Contributor
6 posts
8 reviews
9. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

Our family has been vacationing in Carolina Beach for at least seven years. It is a wonderful location with a home town feel and contrary to some other postings, we have always felt very welcome here. We stay at The Courtyard Marriott and never felt any reason to look elsewhere as it meets all of our needs with clean rooms, great breakfast, nice pools (indoor and outdoor) and allows us to park the car and walk to many nice restaurants and shops.

As far as the beach being short and having a bad undertow, as is the case with all beaches - every hour, every day, every season is always different. Caution should always be used when going in the water.

Make sure you go to The Aquarium and to Squiggles for ice cream. I highly recommend Carolina Beach and hope that you and your family enjoy its quiet laid back atmosphere.

Ironton, Ohio
Level Contributor
16 posts
44 reviews
10. Re: Carolina Beach, NC

We will also be there in August, its a Awsume place. Love the slower feel and not so commercialized town. Bowmans is the best seafood place to eat. We love the South Winds , the old owners have it back and its the same great place it used to be to stay.

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