Blake Walsh

15 Best Things to Do in Kill Devil Hills, NC

  • Published 2021/09/10

Contrary to its name, Kill Devil Hills is a vibrant city that offers something fresh and interesting to see and do, whether you want to explore the outdoors, bask in the sunshine, or play on the beach.

This small town in Dare County, North Carolina, is regarded as the home of aviation, and with that comes a variety of Wright Brother’s attractions you’re guaranteed to enjoy.

Historic buildings, outdoor locations, and unique entertainment are all accessible in the neighborhood.

Aside from tours, surf lessons, and miniature golf, there are a variety of other activities to choose from as well.

Along with its beaches and historic sites, Kill Devil Hills is known for shopping and nightlife, making it a popular destination for people who wish to combine beach time with socializing and dining options.

If you’re staying for a few days, vacation houses of all sizes and shapes offer visitors one-of-a-kind relaxation.

Whatever your preference, this town has so much to offer.

So if you’re having trouble deciding about the activities you can try in Kill Devil Hills, here’s a list of 15 best things to do here:

Learn Aviation History at Wright Brothers National Memorial

Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills

Sara Kendall /

A popular tourist destination, the Wright Brothers National Memorial honors Wilbur and Orville Wright’s initial flights.

As a result of their efforts, they launched their first powered flight in 1903, three years after creating the first aircraft.

What else can you expect to discover on this site?

First Flight Statue in Wright Brothers National Memorial in Kill Devil Hills

Zack Frank /

Travel back in time and see where the first flight took place, complete with ground markings that show how far they traveled.

It’s home to the 1902 glider, as well as the famed 1903 flyer.

There’s even a replica of the Wright brothers’ wind tunnel, which they used to test their theories on flying.

There is also an Orville and Wilbur’s home model and a hangar in the Wright Brothers Memorial.

For example, The Centennial of Flying Museum is a recent addition to the national park.

It features several aviation-related exhibits that span both history and the future of flight.

Enjoying a Hearty Meal at OBX Mystery Dinner

During a four-course dinner served by a wacky cast of suspects who all provide clues, audience members attempt to solve the evening’s crime.

Each performance is divided into five acts.

Pay great attention to the details when the first scene begins.

The cast feeds you a delectable four-course dinner in between performances.

This allows you to question each suspect and discover what they may be concealing.

You may recognize audience members who are celebrating a special occasion during dessert.

At the end of the performance, they will gather your responses, and those with correct answers will get the chance to join a raffle for the evening prize!

Tip: Pay a little more for VIP status.

You’ll receive special items and additional bribery tokens.

We also strongly recommend helping out when they need volunteers for a more immersive experience.

Unleash Your Inner Artist at Glazin’ Go-Nuts

There’s no better way to remember your trip to Kill Devil Hills than with your own hand-painted pottery.

Painting your own pottery and making fused glass is a great activity for the whole family at this pottery workshop.

Creating colorful creations is a delight for kids of all ages, but even adults will appreciate the experience.

Choose from a wide variety of things, such as frames and plates.

Paint and supplies are available on large tables throughout the room, as well as samples to get your creative juices flowing.

The crew will then glaze and fire the piece for you.

After this fun activity, you may have a coffee or tea beverage at Front Porch Cafe while your children burn off their energy in the playground, which is located just next to Glazin’ Go-Nuts.

Rent a Nike at Kitty Hawk Cycle Company to Explore the City

Biking around the city is not only an enjoyable way to go sightseeing but also excellent for your health!

In 2003, Kitty Hawk Cycle Company opened its doors to the locals and visitors of Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina.

Aside from renting bikes, the shop also sells new ones and provides services for the ones they have sold.

It has also expanded its rental service to include kayaks and other water sports equipment, like SUP and surf and bodyboards.

There are also beach chairs and umbrellas to rent, as well as bikes for the whole family.

Learn Making Wine at Outer Banks Wine University

You may learn and have a good time in the Outer Banks Wine University at Chip’s Wine Market.

If you’re seeking to learn more about wine, feel free to jump in their wine classes available.

With a uniquely fun atmosphere, it’s a combination of wine tasting and talks, so you won’t feel intimidated even though you’re a newbie.

Upon joining the session, you will be greeted with a cheese, chocolate, fruit, and cracker tray.

You’ll learn about all the wine regions globally, which foods pair well with certain wines, and receive a bumper sticker saying that you’re a graduate of the wine university.

In addition, the store hosts a variety of wine events that you should take advantage of whenever you can.

Catch Fish at Avalon Fishing Pier

Outside view of Avalon Fishing Pier

David Broad, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Avalon Fishing Pier is one of the best fishing piers in the state, and it’s perfect for both experienced anglers and newbies.

Almost 700 feet in length, the Avalon Pier stretches out to the Atlantic Ocean over 12 to 15 feet of water.

You’ve probably been to a few piers, but this one provides more activities than any other.

It has a bar, a restaurant, and an arcade.

The day cost for fishing the pier is $10.00 for adults and $5.00 for children under age 12.

In addition to a snack bar and rental shop, the pier has a tackle shop.

Bloodworms, squid, mullet, shrimp, and artificial lures are some of the baits available here.

It’s possible to catch anything from blues, to mullet, to pompano, and striped bass!

According to fishing experts, the best times to catch fish are usually in the dawn and before twilight, when they are most active.

The pier is open daily, from March to November.

Go-Kart Racing at Paradise Fun Park

Located at Croatan Highway, Paradise Fun Park offers fast-paced excitement for the whole family.

Whether you’re traveling with family or friends, you may enjoy the thrills of a go-kart racing around the track for $10.

During the busiest season, the park is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Go-Kart driving requires a minimum age of 10 years old.

There is nothing like a Go-Kart experience like the jolts and throttle of a gas-powered Go-Kart!

Among the other activities available at Paradise Fun Park are mini golf, bumper cars, and much more.

Visit Nag Head Wood Preserve

Nag Head Wood Preserve is home to East Coast’s two largest active sand dunes.

North Carolina has established the Nags Head Woods Preserve to conserve one of the East Coast’s biggest surviving coastal woods.

Due to human expansion in coastal areas and the strain on maritime forests, which are defined as woodland habitats influenced by the water, maritime forests like Nags Head Wood have been rarer.

Aside from Nags Head Woods Preserve being a unique environment for a barrier island, its proximity to the US 158 Bypass makes it even more remarkable.

More than 100 kinds of birds live in Nags Head Woods, and 50 of them breed in the area.

In addition, 15 amphibian species and 28 reptile species have been discovered.

There are seven fish species in freshwater lakes, a huge number of reptiles and amphibians, as well as a broad range of floating aquatic plants, such as the water violet, in freshwater lakes.

Join Outer Banks Kayak Adventures

Outer Banks Kayak Adventures offers guided kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding tours.

The experiences range from the extreme Alligator River Wildlife Refuge trip to the family-friendly Kitty Hawk Maritime Forest tour, so there’s something for everyone.

The Kitty Hawk kayak trip is excellent for novices or anybody who likes the outdoors.

Kitty Hawk’s Maritime Forest and Marshes are your destinations.

As you paddle through the area, you will spot turtles and river otters sunning themselves on the shoreline or swimming about in the water.

Kayaking on the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge is a thrilling experience led by skilled guides.

With a 1-hour paddling excursion, small children or anybody looking for a shorter trip may enjoy an Outer Banks kayak excursion.

Get Lost in The Bird Store – The Outer Banks Wildlife Gallery

If you are a wildlife art enthusiast, The Bird Store is a must-see!

A store and wildlife art gallery at the same time, it specializes in wildlife paintings and carvings.

Here, you may find carvings of different bird species, like pelicans, shorebirds, and songbirds.

There is a huge inventory of local driftwood and numerous animal items and old and new carvings, antique fishing gear, original paintings, and prints.

It also features breathtaking photography and décor, as well as resale products.

In addition, you’ll find a few children’s books about the local wildlife and places.

Dine at Kill Devils Frozen Custard & Beach Fries

A Wooden Bridge in Nags Head Woods Preserve

Roger Mulligan from Hagerstown, MD, United States, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

When it comes to refreshments in Kill Devils, Kill Devils Frozen Custard & Beach Fries is always on the top of the locals’ list.

Its premium frozen custard isn’t your ordinary soft serve ice cream.

To produce a rich, creamy, thick, and smooth frozen custard, it only uses premium ingredients and manually fluffs them up with air.

Most importantly, its best-selling Beach Fries are made with freshly produced potatoes chopped and cooked by hand.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Snowboard at Jockey’s Ridge State Park

Six People in Jockey’s Ridge State Park

Chansak Joe /

Just a 10-minute drive from Kill Devil Hills, you will find Jockey’s Ridge State Park.

It is known as one of the greatest places in North Carolina to fly kites, and many believe it to be the ideal site to learn to hang glide.

Because of its soft sand and calm breezes, Jockey’s Ridge is a great place for aviation enjoyment.

The Wright brothers flew their homemade gliders off Kill Devil Hill to the north.

Sand in Jockey’s Ridge State Park

anthony heflin /

Jockey’s Ridge State Park is regarded as the greatest place on the East Coast for sandboarding, in addition to kite flying and hang gliding.

The dune is a popular spot for boarders because the area doesn’t get much snow.

There are similarities between sandboarding and snowboarding, but there are differences as well.

For example, unlike snowboarding, there are no ski lifts required for sandboarding.

Sledding down a sand dune is another popular pastime for the younger crowd.

Wander Around First Flight Adventure Park in Nags Head

Nags Head’s First Flight Adventure Park is just a 15-minute drive away from Kill Devil Hills.

It caters to thrill-seekers of all ages and skill levels and has a nautical motif that everyone will love.

It also provides a view of the Albemarle Sound, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

This is the ultimate family adventure with 42 distinct obstacles and 6 ziplines up to 50 feet in the air.

You may choose from the easiest or most challenging courses.

Each course has seven challenges, and there are 14 ziplines and 50 obstacles in total across the park’s eight courses.

As you ascend to the higher levels, the more challenging the barriers get.

There are also guides on every corner of the park to make sure everyone is safe.

Try Kill-Devil Rum at Outer Banks Distilling

Visit Kill-Devil Rum, the first “legal” distillery on the North Carolina Outer Banks.

For $5, you may take a tour of the distillery Tuesday through Saturday at 1 pm and 3 pm.

You may buy a bottle of its award-winning rum at their distillery, where they provide Kill Devil Rum tastings and tours.

Upon arrival, they will provide you complimentary rum tastings.

Silver, Gold, and Pecan Honey were the three premier rums offered for sampling.

Like a butterfly in a spring wind, the Silver Rum truly glides down the palate.

Its candied pecans are also available for sampling, which is completely free.

To add even more sweetness and tenderness, they offer Pecan Rum.

There is also a cocktail bar.

After sampling all the rums, browse the interesting souvenirs, and then go to the bar for unique handmade drinks.

You may also find yourself loving how the walls were decorated with historical elements to convey the narrative of how this distillery was founded.

Climb the Bodie Island Lighthouse

View of Bodie Island Lighthouse

Victor N. Overton /

Roughly 25 minutes away from Kill Devil Hills, Bodie Island Lighthouse lies on Nags Head at Bodie Island Lighthouse, situated at 8210 feet above sea level.

Though the Bodie Island Light appears just like a normal lighthouse from a distance, getting closer reveals a beautiful panorama of trees and freshwater marshes.

It has some significance in the local history, and it remains a popular destination for tourists.

Night at Bodie Island Lighthouse

Mike Ver Sprill /

In addition, every nightfall, its bright lights blare out into the darkening ocean, even in the middle of contemporary construction.

These lights shine brightly and watch over the dangerous waters of the “Graveyard of the Atlantic.”

From April until October, the Bodie Island Lighthouse is open to the public.

Final Thoughts

With its miles of gorgeous sandy beaches and protected areas, Kill Devil Hills is a great place for a weekend escape.

In addition to spending time at the beach, you may also enjoy its lively social and cultural scene and try a variety of dining options.

For optimum enjoyment, you may tour around the city on a bike or enjoy the natural beauty of its landscapes on foot.

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