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Get Hooked on Onslow’s Great Outdoors

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The end of summer and early fall is an ideal time of year to enjoy  Onslow County’s Great Outdoors at the central coast of North Carolina.   It’s the perfect time to plan a last minute getaway or family vacation!

Get hooked on some of the most beautiful waterways and beaches ripe with all kinds of water recreation that will delight you, your friends and family.  One of the most amazing experiences is to soak in the scenery on the New River in Jacksonville with Bayonet Enterprise Cruises, a chartered yacht.  Packages are priced at very reasonable rates and range from a romantic sunset cruise with champagne, wine, cheese and fresh caught local shrimp to longer cruises for family outings that include kayaking and a barbeque.  It’s a great way to kick off your vacation, leave your troubles behind at the dock and feel the stress fall away with the wake. It’s beyond exceptional!

If you’d like to embark on a sailing excursion, check out Swansboro by Sail.  Captain Mike provides a first-class and relaxing experience for couples, friends, as well as families at affordable rates.  He knows the ropes!

Onslow County is an anglers paradise.  Pier fishing is a common sight with some great options in Swansboro at Bicentennial Park or at the Seaview Fishing Pier in North Topsail Beach.

If you are looking for some inshore fishing, Jacksonville is home to a couple of fishing charters with some friendly local expertise that can help make your excursion a memorable one.  Check out their fishing blog with all of the details.

There are numerous fishing charters around our area.  Captain Marc, of Bad Habit Sport Fishing, in Sneads Ferry, has twenty years of experience and has techniques that produce some great catches of Spanish mackerel, Atlantic bonito, trout, cobia, king mackerel, grouper, snapper, mahi, tuna, wahoo, sailfish, and blue marlin.

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Hammocks Beach State Park is a beautiful place for water recreation!  You can take the pontoon ferry from the Park office or take your kayak or small boat to Bear IslandWhat an amazing spot for long walks along the unspoiled beach!

If you’re looking for something a little different, consider a private excursion to Hammocks Beach and the islands around Swansboro with Marsh Cruises!  Explore our area’s coastline and maritime forest ecosystems and salt marshes.  Do some dolphin watching & more!  Captain Darryl is a Swansboro local and his  23 ft. BayRider Skiff can take you comfortably through the beautiful winding backwaters of Swansboro and Emerald Isle.  If you’d like to do some shelling, Captain Darryl knows all of the sweet spots!

Do you enjoy paddling?  Outdoor adventurers enjoy seeing the natural wonder and beauty along the intercoastal waterways and the New River in Jacksonville.  Paddle NC offers kayak tours and rentals.  They also have locations throughout Onslow County in Swansboro and North Topsail Beach.

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North Topsail Beach is known as a top bargain beach destination in North Carolina.  Located on a barrier island, North Topsail has a reputation for its amazing beauty and a wide variety of coastal wildlife. You won’t find a plethora of high-rises and towering condo buildings here.  Rather, you’ll discover sea turtle nests on the beach, exceptional fishing locales and many unobstructed views for birdwatching.  Are you an outdoor adventurer?  Book a jet ski tour to see spectacular views of the whole island from the water.

So many of us don’t like to leave home without our furry family members!  Vacationers and locals enjoy North Topsail Beach ’s pet-friendly, relaxed and unspoiled public beach access along with free parking.

Special Accommodations: North Topsail Beach has two amazing resorts, St. Regis and Villa Capriani.  Both are condominiums that offer beach rentals with incredible views.    

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Where to Stay

The area offers a  great value for families looking to explore the coastal region of North Carolina.  Staying in Jacksonville is the perfect location for day trips and excursions with easy access to many local and regional attractions.  Check out all of our hotels here.

If you’d like to stay at the beach, check out the Quality Inn – Sneads Ferry/North Topsail Beach, or The Topsail Shores Inn, as well as the Hampton Inn – Sneads Ferry/North Topsail Beach.

If you’re looking for a Trip Advisor top-rated hotel in Swansborowe recommend the Hampton Inn & Suites Swansboro / near Camp Lejeune at Bear Creek Gate.


Outdoor adventurers enjoy seeing the natural wonder and beauty along the intercoastal waterways and the New River in Jacksonville.  Paddle NC offers kayak tours and rentals and has numerous locations throughout Onslow County to get out on the water.

Where to Eat

Onslow County has some amazing dining options.  Enjoy a wide variety of cuisines including NC BBQ in Jacksonville.  Sneads Ferry is known as the Shrimp Capital of the East Coast.  Swansboro and its historic downtown district have some world-class waterfront restaurants that will enchant you.  See our Visitors Guide online, or request a copy in the mail for a complete list.

For more information about our area, visit our website at OnlyInOnslow.com.  We look forward to seeing you here!

Onslow County Tourism

Onslow County Tourism

As one of North Carolina’s oldest counties, Onslow County reflects a rich and varied history.  It’s also the proud home of the Marines of Camp Lejeune, New River Air Station, Camp Johnson and Camp Geiger.

The county has been graced with an extraordinary natural beauty: over 30 miles of wide, unspoiled beaches, waters teeming with an abundance of marine life, forests filled with wildlife, and rich farmland to harvest.

Today, you can explore everything from military and historic monuments to beautiful waterways and beaches to friendly spots to eat and play.