If you head to the southern tip of North Carolina's coast, you'll find a place both pristine in its preservation of nature, but also luxurious enough for even the most high-end vacationer. Bald Head Island is only accessible by boat, with a two-mile journey by ferry needed to access the secluded 12,000 acres of beach, marsh, and forest preserved in its natural state. With gorgeous vacation homes available for rent year-round, Bald Head Island is one of the South's best-kept secrets for a secluded vacation still filled with luxury.
Of the 12,000 acres on the island, 10,000 of them are preserved unspoiled, with 14 miles of beaches and plenty of marshes and forests showing an unsurpassed beauty. Rare is the place where you can see the sun rise and set on the beach in the same day, but it's done every 24 hours on this unforgettable jewel. That commitment to nature even extends to transportation, with most residents venturing around town on a bicycle or golf cart.
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Make sure to see "Old Baldy," the oldest still-standing lighthouse in North Carolina. Though no longer operational, the tower was finished in 1817, but didn't have the desired effect: it wasn't tall enough or bright enough to keep sailors away from the shifting Frying Pan Shoals off the coast. It had been used on-and-off since the Civil War but was decommissioned in 1959, and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Bald Head Island is also known for its fantastic birding, with over 260 different species documented to have been seen on its shores. Everything from white ibis' to blue herons and bald eagles have been seen, as it's a wonderful spot to stop during your Big Year.
On the south side of the island, the Bald Head Island Club sits where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Cape Fear River. The golf course is a George Cobb classic, with the front nine winding through a maritime forest, and the inward end hugging the Atlantic Ocean making for majestic views on the challenging layout. Temporary memberships are available for guests staying on the island, with workout facilities, tennis, and even croquet available.
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Providing direct beach access, the Shoals Club on Bald Head Island has a country club atmosphere, with a pool and multiple dining options for families to formal. As a golf-free companion to the Bald Head Island Club, it provides activities for children as well, from bocce ball to kayaking.
Bald Head Island is an unforgettable experience not to be missed, with nature and luxury surrounding all of you.