Plan Your Winter Escape to Pleasure Island

Are you someone who thinks that the only time to enjoy a trip to the Cape Fear Coast is during the warm months of summer? Well, if that is the case, we’d love to let you in on a little secret: an off-season wintertime visit to the beach can take you a world away from the stressful daily grind. You may be surprised with how rejuvenating just a weekend getaway can be. Please look over the following suggested itinerary and see for yourself…


Hopefully you can get away from your job or other obligations a little early and arrive at Pleasure Island by mid-afternoon. After you check into your accommodations, the first order of business is to take a long walk along the pristine beach strand. From Carolina Beach all the way to the south end of Fort Fisher, there is nothing like a leisurely stroll with the gentle sounds of rolling waves to help you unwind. If you are really lucky you may find a perfect conch shell, sand dollar, piece of sea glass or even spot a few frolicking dolphins.

By late afternoon you should now be officially on "Island Time." And just look at the time! Why, it’s time to celebrate TGIF of course! Thankfully, there are several great places to do this, including oceanfront hotel beach bars and some quaint neighborhood spots as well. Might we suggest Island Beverage, Good Hops Brewery,or HopLite Pub?

As the dinner hour approaches, thoughts may turn to steaming platters of fresh local seafood, soul satisfying ethnic fare or upscale culinary creations. Weekend evenings are the perfect time to enjoy a lovely meal at one of our many dining establishments. Regardless of what you’re in the mood for, chances are you’ll find it. From fine dining to casual, elegant to homey, when it comes to great food Pleasure Island never disappoints. Please review this link to discover what appeals to you: http://www.pleasureislandnc.org/where-to-eat-listing-all.php


A clear Saturday morning presents limitless possibilities along beautiful Pleasure Island. Perhaps you’ve had a long winter walk or an excellent dawn patrol session and worked up quite an appetite?We encourage you not to skip the most important meal of the day and suggest a local hangout such as Gibby’s Dock and Dine or Kate’s Pancake House.

With breakfast behind you and a full day ahead, there are so many choices! If you have not visited mainstays such as the N.C. Aquarium at Fort Fisher or the Fort Fisher Historic Site and Museum, then head south and take it all in. A trip on the Fort Fisher ferry over to the charming waterfront village of Southport is always a winner, or that may just have to wait until tomorrow. Carolina Beach State Park and Freeman Park are also open. These are wonderful areas for hiking, fishing, picnicking and just enjoying the great outdoors. If you have never driven along the north end, the winter months are a great time to see what all the fuss is about and without the crowds! Rent fishing gear or a Jeep from Sun Fun Rentals.

Golfers will want to take advantage of the special winter rates offered by Beau Rivage Golf and Resort. Their “Winter Twilight” package begins after 1 pm. Get all of the details here: http://www.beaurivagegolf.com/golf-course/rates

Thanks to frequent unseasonable weather patterns, there are often plenty of days during the winter months that turn out to be great beach days! If you luck into one, we suggest getting an early start on your tan and catching up on some riveting beach reads. You’ll certainly want lunch, so pick up a BBQ plate from A&G or grab something yummy from The Veggie Wagon.

A winter Saturday afternoon is a wonderful time to peruse the fun and funky shops that dot the island. Who knows? You may score big on some off-season clothing!

If you headed to Pleasure Island with a goal of sheer indulgence, then you are again in luck. There are several wonderful salons and spas that really know how to pamper their clients. For this weekend’s visit, check out Beauty South or Island Massage and Spa.

Saturday evening to Sunday

As your idyllic day fades into the evening, it’s once again time to choose a special place for dinner. Perhaps there were several that caught your eye. A weekend simply will not allow you to visit them all, which is why you’ll have to plan a longer visit soon!

On Sunday, if you do not have to pack up too early, hopefully you can plan one more activity. Please keep in mind that many local businesses such as fishing charters and surf camps are seasonal. However, you may find a few operating on a part-time schedule.

Please check our “Where to Play” member list just in case.

A lazy Sunday is also a very nice opportunity to drive around the island and scout out vacation rentals for the upcoming summer!

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