Ocracoke Island is one of the northern barrier islands of the Outer Banks of North Carolina and is accessible only by boat or aircraft. Legend has it that Ocracoke was one of the pirate Blackbeard’s favorite hideouts. Teach’s Hole is a short distance from the mouth of the harbor and is one of the spots where Blackbeard supposedly buried some treasure. Therefore it is not surprising that pirate lore and pirate-themed shops are popular with tourists in the village.
A Pirate’s Paradise
Ocracoke Lighthouse was built in 1823 and is the second oldest operating lighthouse in the nation. It is an easy walk from Silver Lake harbor.
Ocracoke is part of the Cape Hattaras National Seashore and the16 miles of beaches here have been nominated as some of the prettiest and most pristine in the US. Fishing, swimming, boating, parasailing, and camping are popular sports on the island.
The village of Ocracoke is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and includes over 100 homes and the lighthouse built in 1823. The British Cemetery contains the bodies of British soldiers who died here during the Second World War. Indeed, this area is rich in history and the small museum on the island tells the tales of people who lived and fought on and off the coast of this island during the past several centuries.
Ocracoke is also the home to many migratory birds and is a bird-watcher’s paradise. The Pony Pasture, maintained by the National Park Service, houses the island’s Banker Ponies, sturdy, wild ponies that probably swam ashore hundreds of years ago after a ship wreck off the coast. During the summer months many of the restaurants have live entertainment in the evening. Indeed, there are numerous restaurants and pubs on the island with a wide selection of good food, including just-caught seafood from the fishing boats operating out of the island. Shopping is also a popular activity. The size of the village makes it possible to walk or bike to any destination in an afternoon. Ocracoke certainly has something of interest for everyone.