Carolina Beach invites all to experience down-to-earth good times in an inclusive, laid-back island setting. Visitors of varying abilities can enjoy this vibrant beach town with accessible beach mats and wheelchairs, as well as accommodating activities and places to stay.

Beach Fun for All

As one of the East Coast’s more accessible beaches, Carolina Beach offers classic seaside excitement for visitors of all mobility levels. Wheelchair-accessible mats are placed on the beach around Memorial Day and remain through Labor Day, providing access from the Carolina Beach Boardwalk to the sandy shore. Lifeguards are also on duty during the same timeframe with 20 lifeguard stands covering three miles of beautiful beach. Additionally, 10 WaterWheel beach wheelchairs are available year-round and free to reserve for up to five days through the Recreation Center. Prior to your vacation, please contact the Carolina Beach Parks and Recreation at (910) 458-2977 or to reserve a chair.


Hosted by local nonprofit Ocean Cure in partnership with Odysea Surf School, the annual Life Rolls On tour comes to Carolina Beach each summer for a free surf clinic that welcomes participants with various disabilities. Adaptive surfboards and beach transfer wheelchairs are provided.

Accessible Activities

The vintage Carolina Beach Boardwalk’s wide pathways make it wheelchair-friendly so everyone can join in on the timeless family fun. Explore nostalgic hotspots along the Boardwalk, such as the Carolina Beach Arcade and Britt’s Donut Shop, a seasonal favorite. Carolina Beach Lake Park is an 11-acre lake a few blocks from the ocean lined by a paved walking path. Go for a stroll or take a moment to enjoy the surrounding views.

Get in touch with nature at the flora- and fauna-filled Carolina Beach State Park, which offers two wheelchair-accessible trails. The half-mile Flytrap Trail is an ADA-accessible path with natural and wooden surfaces that loop through wetland wildlife habitats, where you might spot rare plants like the indigenous Venus flytrap! The state park’s one-mile Fitness Trail is an ADA-accessible gravel loop.


Nearby on the island, the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher boasts aquatic wonders that can be enjoyed by visitors of varying mobility levels and sensory characteristics. As a KultureCity Sensory Inclusive™ Certified venue, the aquarium lends out sensory backpacks that include noise-reducing headphones, fidget toys and a feelings thermometer. Guests with blindness or low vision can embark on a guided tactile tour with two weeks’ notice. ASL interpreters are also available upon request in advance.

Inclusive Places to Stay

Carolina Beach provides accessible, hospitable stays for everyone’s needs, from full-service hotels to comfortable vacation rentals. Situated on the oceanfront, the Hampton Inn and Suites Carolina Beach and Courtyard Marriott Carolina Beach are full-service beach retreats that offer a variety of rooms and amenities, including roll-in showers and accessible pools for those with disabilities, blindness or low vision. Find your ideal vacation rental with Bryant Real Estate by choosing from homes like “Carolina On My Mind” with an elevator that services all levels. Intracoastal Vacation Rentals also offers a variety of homes with elevators and other accessible amenities.


Whether you are looking for wheelchair-friendly beach fun or engaging activities that welcome visitors with disabilities, Carolina Beach offers original vacation experiences for all.