Get away and get outside this fall on a quick escape to Kure Beach!The island is just an easy road trip away, helping you stay close to home and stay within your budget. Kure Beach is the perfect destination for a safe and affordable escape with activities for the whole family to enjoy. 

Continue reading for our guide to fun, free and affordable ways to spend your next quick trip to Kure Beach. 

Stay a Spell 

In cozy Kure Beach, you’ll have your pick of lodging to help you relax and unwind. Experience the small beach town feel in a private vacation rental, with plenty of options for any size family or budget. Crystal Shores offers oceanfront, fully furnished apartments located within walking distance of the Kure Beach Fishing Pier and local restaurants. Sit back in your rocking chair while feeling the fall ocean breezes and listening to the sound of calm, crashing waves. 


Choose one of our quaint motels or inns located in the heart of Kure Beach for more modern amenities while still finding quiet, family-friendly charm. Customize your stay at Admiral’s Quarters, where you can choose from rooms with or without equipped kitchens, private bedrooms or adjoining rooms and beach views from most rooms. Or, find your way to the Kure Keys Motel for family-friendly conveniences like proximity to Ocean Front Park. Located just 100 feet from the beach, you’ll be able to feel the sand between your toes within seconds. Be sure to visit lodging partner websites directly to find the best deals and opt for a weeknight stay (Sunday to Thursday) for the best savings. 

Island Flavors 

Start your day with a locally brewed coffee and muffin or bagel from the Happy Hippies Java Hut, where you’ll also find signature snacks, smoothies and local kombucha perfect for a quick afternoon bite! Or, pop into Ocean View Restaurant for savory and sweet breakfast favorites like lemon blueberry buttercream pancakes or chicken and waffles with their signature fried chicken. Savor Caribbean-inspired dishes sourced from local colorful ingredients at Jack Mackerel’s Island Grill, where you can order pickup or dine outside on the covered patio. Enjoy specials like Thursday Prime Rib Club and Parmesan-Crusted Grouper Picatta. Wind down after a day of exploration on the outdoor patio at Big Daddy’s Restaurant with affordable family-style platters of seafood or BBQ favorites and sides. Big Daddy’s has been a Kure Beach tradition since the 1970s! 


If you’re looking for a sweet treat to end your day, venture to nearby Carolina Beach for a scoop of homemade ice cream from Squigley’s Ice Cream and Treats or a unique confection from Scoopin’ Yummies.  

Disconnect and Discover 

Known as North Carolina’s small wonder, there are plenty of outdoor treasures to explore in Kure Beach. Explore the island by water with a kayak rental from Kayak Carolina. Venture to Zeke’s Island Reserve, where coastal habitats are protected for long-term research, education and stewardship. Here, you might be able to spot bird species such as dunlin or great blue heron in the beautiful, dynamic landscape.  


Find a different view of the water by purchasing affordably-priced tickets to the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher, where you can meet Luna, a rare albino alligator, or discover the open ocean exhibit featuring sharks, stingrays, eels and more. After you’ve explored the indoor exhibits, head out to the aquarium’s gardens for a stroll and spy feathered friends from the birding deck, including the new outdoor bald eagle habitat. Be sure to purchase tickets in advance online.  


Get in your steps with a hike along primitive trails through the salt marsh to discover an authentic WWII bunker and explore six miles of protected shoreline at Fort Fisher State Recreation Area. Visit on a weekday to snag an all-day pass for just $20! Or, head to Fort Fisher State Historic Site to hike along a scenic trail shaded by gnarled live oaks and discover the Fort Fisher earthworks, the largest earthen fort in the South. You can also visit the on-site museum to learn more about the fort’s history from construction to its fall – admission is free.  


Whether you’re looking to relax and kick back or get out and explore, make Kure Beach your go-to destination for a quick and affordable trip this fall. 

Get away to Kure Beach this Autumn with more fall trip ideas.