3 Educational Activities on the Outer Banks


Bodie 1From museums and lighthouses to parks and monuments, the Outer Banks is a viable history lesson. Dating back thirty years before Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, the Outer Banks was home to the nation's first European settlers and has since collected landmark moments in time, including the Wright Brothers first flight and the unfortunate demise of the U.S.S. Monitor in what is known today as the Graveyard of the Atlantic. The opportunity to experience this rich history lies around every corner of the Outer Banks. The following are a few educational opportunities to check out on your next Outer Banks vacation.

Bodie Island Lighthouse Tour

Built in 1872, the black and white striped light station still stands just off of Highway 12 in Nags Head. The history of this, and other Outer Banks lighthouses, is fascinating, and anyone who enjoys learning about the days these beauties were built and what they have endured since will enjoy a trip to one of the 5 lighthouses that call the Outer Banks home.

Nestled in the marshy coastal grasslands of Dare County, the Bodie Island Lighthouse provides visitors with a beacon of history. Metal beams have been added to the top and sides in recent years as a part of an extensive restoration project that will ensure that future generations will be able to climb the 214 steps to the top. The 156-foot lighthouse shines a beam 19 miles offshore, casting an impressive light over both land and sea. The lighthouse grounds are open for exploring visitors and the keepers' home now serves as a ranger station and Outer Banks information center, filled with all of the resources you need to learn about the history of the light. For more information, click: here.

Wright Brothers National Monument

It's not every day that you get to learn about how the first flight in history took place, all while standing right where it happened. That's the type of educational experience you can have at The Wright Brothers National Monument. Wilbur and Orville Wright, innovative brothers from Ohio, chose the Outer Banks as the best destination to experiment with their flying machines and on December 17, 1903, following three years of trial and error, the first flight in history took place. A 60-foot granite tower was erected in their honor and stands on the grounds of where it all happened. Daily classes, demonstrations, and presentations are given, providing education and hands on experience to visitors from all over the world. For more information, click: here.

North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island

There is much to learn at The North Carolina Aquarium on Roanoke Island. Featuring the largest shark collection in the state, the aquarium is a crowd pleaser to visitors of all ages. With an abundance of hands-on exhibits, animal feeds, live dives, classes, and demonstrations, there is something going on every day at the aquarium. The collection of animals is impressive and it's a great thing to do with the family year-round, rain or shine while vacationing on the Outer Banks. For more information, click: here.

The opportunities to learn about the rich coastal culture and local history are bountiful on the Outer Banks. For a genuinely educational experience in a beautiful atmosphere, check out one of the places above, or set out on an adventure, because you're never too far from a treasured piece of history while visiting the Outer Banks.