FAQ

Planning a vacation to Carolina Beach is easy with our list of answers to frequently asked visitor questions. We have answers about parking, pets, beach access and more. If you don’t find what you’re looking for here, feel free to reach out to our Visitor Information Specialist or stop by our Visitor Information Center.

GENERAL INFORMATION:

  • There are public restroom and beach shower facilities at the Carolina Beach Boardwalk. Several parking lots also have beach restroom and shower facilities available. See a map of these locations

  • Yes! Please call (910) 341-4030 for information and requests or request information online.

  • All accommodations, dining options, things to do and events are listed on our website. Click on the appropriate heading to see a complete list.

  • Carolina Beach is known for comfortable weather year-round. Find forecasts, average temperatures by month and more weather-related information.

  • Please contact our Sales and Services team who can assist you with your questions.  Find more information on Meetings and Weddings, including venues, services and more.

  • Sales and use tax on purchases, including food, clothing, and other retail are taxed at the rate of 7%, grocery store food designed to take home is 2%, and prepared food at restaurants is 7%. In addition to the 7% sales tax, there is a local county room occupancy tax at a rate of 6%.

Transportation & Accessibility:

  • The Town of Carolina Beach has metered parking spaces as well as parking lots that offer pay-by-phone parking through the ParkMobile app. Parking lots also have pay stations that accept cash. Lanier Parking is responsible for ticket issuance, ticket payments, appeals, as well as meter collection and maintenance. Parking is enforced beginning March 1st continuing through October 31st.  During this time paid parking is in effect from 8:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. seven days a week. Parking for more than 24 hours at a time is not permitted. For parking services, call Lanier Parking at (910) 458-4614. Find more parking information about locations, payment options, rates and other miscellaneous information. All parking designated "Handicap" spaces are free as along as the vehicle is displaying a handicap parking placard. For information on parking and any restrictions, call the Town Parking Office at (910) 458-4614. To enjoy overnight beach camping and 4-wheel drive beach access, head to Freeman Park. Find information regarding Freeman Park rules and regulations as well as site availability.

  • Wilmington International Airport (ILM) is approximately 19 miles from Carolina Beach.

  • Depending on where you’re staying on the island, a taxi charges approximately $45 plus one way.

  • Taxis, rental cars and the Fort Fisher Ferry provide transportation to the island. Find more information about ground transportation.

  • For information on free beach accessibility equipment/services, call the Carolina Beach Parks & Recreation Department at (910) 458-2977. Find a list of accessible hotels, restaurants and attractions. For more comprehensive handicap information, visit ACCESS North Carolina.

  • Pleasure Island Rentals, Paddle NC, and Tony Silvagni Surf School rent bicycles. Find information on all equipment rental businesses on the island.

  • Yes!  Find an Island Greenway map and a self-guided bicycle tour of historic places on the island.

Beach:

  • There is no charge to access the beach. Freeman Park Recreation Area requires a paid 4-wheel drive permit to drive on the beach. Prices vary by permit type and time of year.

  • Lifeguards are on duty every day from Memorial weekend through Labor Day weekend. Carolina Beach is a USLA Advanced Certified Beach. The lifeguards train and exercise daily for the safety of everyone on the beach. Find more information on lifeguard stand locations and public beach access points.

  • Dogs are allowed on the beach any time from October 1st to March 31st and before 9 a.m. and after 5 p.m. from April 1st to September 30th. Mike Chappell Park (located at 501 S Dow Rd, Carolina Beach) has a year-round fenced dog park.

    Dogs are not allowed on the historical wooden parts of the Carolina Beach Boardwalk or in the Boardwalk Business District at any time — this includes sidewalks, walkways, or public property east of Canal Dr. from the north side of Harper Ave. (Hampton Inn and Suites location) up to and including Cape Fear Blvd. (Gazebo area).

    Freeman Park Pet Regulations: Dogs are required to be on a leash from April 1st to September 30th. From October 1st to March 31st, dogs are allowed off a leash so long as they remain under voice command and the owner is within a reasonable distance from the pet. For further information, please contact the Carolina Beach Police Department at (910) 458-2540.

    All dogs are required to always be on a leash. You must have a plastic or paper container that can be used to clean up and contain dog waste on your person at all times until you can dispose of the waste in an appropriate container. For further information, find the Town of Carolina Beach Pet Rules.

  • You can rent beach items at Pleasure Island Rentals, Tony Silvagni Surf School or RentABeachChair. Find a full list of equipment rental businesses including beach equipment rentals.

  • Driving on the beach is permitted at Freeman Park Recreation Area. Annual, daily and daily holiday passes are available in addition to overnight camping. Only four-wheel-drive vehicles are allowed. No all-wheel or two-wheel drive vehicles are permitted. Find more information on  Freeman Park rules and regulations.

Things to Do:

  • You can find Venus flytraps along the Flytrap Trail and throughout Carolina Beach State Park.

  • You can see what is happening during your visit by checking our Events Calendar.

  • Find suggestions for eco-tourism activities including exploring coastal reserves, parks, the Island Greenway and protected sea turtle projects and information.

  • Our Trip Ideas highlight all the fun things you can do, including tours and cruises.

  • Find a complete list of island outfitters providing water sport rentals including surf, kayak, standup paddleboards and more.

Food and Drink:

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