Carolina Beach’s public beach access points are portals to laid-back good times. Pack a beach chair and head to one of these local-favorite spots for an only-in-Carolina Beach vacation experience.
Nestled on the northern end of Carolina Beach, Freeman Park offers a stretch of undeveloped shoreline perfect for surfing, swimming, fishing and shelling. Visitors with four-wheel-drive vehicles can drive directly onto the beach from the park’s public access point by purchasing a daily access pass at the on-site pay station. Plan a day trip or secure an overnight camping permit (available from Labor Day to Memorial Day) and soak up the secluded beachfront scenery.
Public beach accesses throughout the northern end of Carolina Beach will lead you to classic beach fun – whether you choose to build sandcastles, compete in a friendly game of bocce ball or simply relax. Salt Marsh Access sits beside the iconic Carolina Beach Pier, home to the High Tide Lounge and Tiki Bar, which offers delicious drinks and sweeping ocean views. Limited parking is available near the access.
Seahorse, Oyster Shell and Sea Gull Accesses are among several ADA-accessible public entry points providing a wheelchair-friendly route to the beach. The town of Carolina Beach has 10 WaterWheel beach wheelchairs available year-round for visitors to enjoy. Contact the Parks & Recreation department at (910) 458-2977 to reserve a chair. Parking is also available near each access. Public restrooms and rinse stations can be found at the Sandpiper Access, along with parking and a wheelchair-friendly ramp.
Adjacent to the vintage Carolina Beach Boardwalk, the Harper Access serves as a gateway to authentic family fun making it a favorite of the locals. Several public access points can also be found directly along the Boardwalk, providing convenient access to the hustle and bustle of shops, restaurants and seasonal amusement rides. Cool down with a sweet treat from Latella Gelato, pick up a slice from Fentoni’s Pizzeria or a specialty hot dog from Nauti Dog, all located within a short walk from the Boardwalk’s beach accesses. Be sure to stop at Britt’s Donut Shop, a beloved spot along the Boardwalk since 1939, serving hot, delicious, handmade glazed donuts seasonally. Additionally, the Hamlet Access is located a few blocks down with a nearby metered parking lot and is the perfect entry point to watch the Fireworks by the Sea, a weekly fireworks display during summer months.
The Atlanta, Driftwood and Lake Accesses are a local favorite for their proximity to Carolina Beach Lake Park. Located just across the street from the park, the accesses offer public parking and public restrooms, and they are conveniently located near the park’s playground and gazebo. Step off the beach from the Lake Access and pick up a take-and-bake treat, milkshake or tasty snack from The Veggie Wagon, located directly across the street.
With convenient public accesses connecting Carolina Beach’s colorful streets to the scenic shoreline, it’s easy to plan a laid-back beach day and let the good times roll in like the waves. Check out the map to see local parking access points to plan your retreat to Carolina Beach.