While being one of the smaller islands along the Outer Banks of North Carolina, Roanoke Island is one of the most unique and charming locations that make up the chain of barrier islands. Its geography is unlike any of its neighboring towns; although the island is not along the coast of the Atlantic, it is surrounded by popular waterfront settings. Roanoke Island is comprised of the Town of Manteo and the Village of Wanchese. Read More
Roanoke Island is the actual island that lies between the North Carolina mainland and Nags Head on the Outer Banks. It's roughly 8 miles long and, at its widest point, 2 mile wide. It's reachable by three bridges, the 5.3-mile (longest in the state) Virginia Dare Bridge that runs from Manns Harbor to the mid-section of Roanoke Island, the William B. Umstead Bridge that also runs from Manns Harbor to the north end of Roanoke Island (mostly used by locals now) and the Washington Baum Bridge that connects the island with Nags Head.
From points North: the closest international airport is in Norfolk, VA (ORF). After landing in Norfolk, you will then head south on NC-168 and US-158 where you will drive over the Wright Brothers Memorial Bridge. When you get to the road signs pointing you to NC12 North, you will stay straight and proceed through the towns of Kitty Hawk, Kill Devil Hills, and Nags Head. Continue on S. Croatan Hwy through Nags Head, passing plenty of shops and restaurants along the way. Continue over the Washington Baum Bridge, then take a right onto US-64 E.
From the west: US-64 will take you all the way into Roanoke Island.
Yes, Roanoke Island is a vibrant community with residents who call the island home year-round. There are several popular local communities on Roanoke Island including Pirate's Cove and Shallowbag Bay.
Roanoke Island offers a rich historical experience with attractions like Roanoke Island Festival Park, Fort Raleigh National Historic Site, the Queen Elizabeth II ship, the Elizabethan Gardens, and the NC Aquarium. Additionally, the Lost Colony outdoor drama at Manteo's waterside theater is a must-see. There is plenty to do for the whole family.
Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities, such as exploring the New World history, visiting the Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse, relaxing on the beaches, and taking part in water-based adventures like fishing or kayaking. A popular activity is renting a boat out of Pirate's Cove marina and enjoying a day of off shore fishing.
When visiting Roanoke Island, it's a good idea to plan ahead and book vacation rentals in advance. Don't miss the First Fridays events, explore the local art galleries, and take some time to enjoy the quiet streets and charming waterfront of downtown Manteo - all within walking distance of each other. If you are a 4th of July celebration person, be sure to plan your Outer Banks vacation for Roanoke Island's amazing fireworks display.
Roanoke Island got its name from the Roanoke Native American tribe that inhabited the area before the arrival of European settlers.
Yes, Roanoke Island has beautiful beaches along the Roanoke Sound, which offers a different experience from the oceanfront beaches found on other parts of the Outer Banks. Roanoke Island is not very far from Nags Head where there are plenty of public beach accesses to enjoy as well.
Roanoke Island stands apart from the typical beach areas of the Outer Banks as it offers a unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty. Visitors can enjoy a more tranquil and laid-back atmosphere compared to the busier beach towns. However, there is enough to do
Distant yet easily traveled to, it’s also effortlessly accessible from South Nags Head and connected by the major highway. With the Roanoke Sound on its eastern shoreline and the Croatan Sound along the west, the views are scenic, and the location couldn't be more ideal for fishing and boat excursions. The bodies of water aren’t the only things that separate it from the mainland. Aesthetically, it provides a variety of different settings than the typical Outer Banks landscape with its forested environments, historic attractions, and quaint Manteo downtown and waterfront. Being surrounded by water, you are sure to experience an amazing Outer Banks sunset.
Visitors to the Island can spend their whole vacation just within this tranquil area. From the Elizabethan Gardens to the Fort Raleigh National Historic Site, the Lost Colony play, and exhibits at the Manteo waterside theater, Roanoke is home to plenty of exploration. A fantastic area for watersports, so spend a day out on the Sound and take in the picturesque setting. Both children and adults will enjoy a visit to the North Carolina Aquarium. Roanoke Island has plenty of entertainment options throughout the Island, and some of the OBX's top-rated shops and restaurants are minutes from your vacation rental. You will find a lot of music at Roanoke Island Festival Park. Stay on Roanoke Island and experience a different side of the Outer Banks.
Roanoke Island vacation rentals, particularly those provided by KEES, offer a wide range of amenities like private rooms, hot tubs, waterfront views, and accommodations suitable for the whole family.
For those planning a wedding or celebration, KEES Vacations has an event home on Roanoke Island, The Westside Inn. On the north end of the Island, this amazing waterfront property will amaze all of your guests and provide the perfect venue for your wedding and guests. Call our Guest Services at 1-866-316-1843 to check for prices and availability.
Booking with KEES offers the assurance of high-quality vacation properties with excellent amenities and top-notch customer service. They provide a seamless experience, ensuring your vacation on Roanoke Island is memorable and enjoyable. With the KEES FlexStay program, you can check in and check out whatever day you would like, with no 7-night minimum requirement.
With its rich history, charming town, and beautiful scenery, Roanoke Island is a perfect destination for families, couples, and solo vacationers looking to explore the best of the Outer Banks. Whether you want to delve into its historical significance, relax on its serene beaches, or explore the natural wonders, Roanoke Island has something to offer every visitor. Start planning your Outer Banks vacation to this hidden gem of North Carolina and experience the charm of Roanoke Island!