Carolina Beach Boardwalk
Welcome to the Boardwalk
The sights and sounds of family fun await you at the Carolina Beach Boardwalk, named one of the most awesome boardwalks in America by Budget Travel. The summer season brings amusement rides, seasonal live music and weekly fireworks. Enjoy sweet treats, colorful shops with souvenirs and beach gear, seaside restaurants and tiki bars. Oh, and did we mention easy access to our beautiful sandy shore? There are just a few vintage boardwalks left in the country, but there is only one Carolina Beach Boardwalk, so be sure to put it on your bucket list.
The Carolina Beach Boardwalk offers amusement rides and fun for small children like a colorful carousel and fun slide along with carnival games and street food all summer long. Take a break from the sun and level-up in the Carolina Beach Arcade. Cool off, play games and win prizes just a block off the ocean. Attractions are open Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend.
Let the Boardwalk be your launching pad for a one-of-a-kind adventure. Wheel around the island with Pleasure Island Rentals, where your family can rent any number of different bikes. Explore on the self-guided bike tour, which starts on the Boardwalk and leads you through sites in Carolina Beach, Kure Beach and Fort Fisher.
Always wanted to ride the waves, but didn't know where to start? Take a lesson from Odysea Surf School or Tony Silvagni Surf School, led by Olympic gold medal winner and world champion surfer Tony Silvagni. You can also rent surfboards, bodyboards, flippers, beach chairs, umbrellas, cabanas and even beach toys from Tony Silvagni Surf School.
Music, Fireworks & Festivals
Immerse yourself in the colorful sights and sounds of the season at Carolina Beach. Be amazed by Fireworks by the Sea & Boardwalk Blast, where live music starts at 6:30 p.m. and fireworks launch at 9 p.m. every Thursday evening throughout the summer. The Carolina Beach Music Festival has taken place each June for more than 30 years and is the biggest and only music festival held on the beach on the North Carolina Coast. The Island Arts Festival takes place each May.
Check out our events calendar for more upcoming events in the area. Annual off-season events that include Boardwalk activities are Santa by the Sea and the Island of Lights Festival.
Variety is the name of the game when it comes to dining on and within walking distance of the Carolina Beach Boardwalk. Eat freshly steamed seafood at the Shuckin' Shack, or grab a slice or whole pie at Fentoni's Pizza. For authentic North Carolina barbecue, nothing beats Carolina Smokehouse. Enjoy juicy burgers and hot dogs as you step back in time to the 1950s at Pop's Diner.
Quick Bites & Treats
Looking to grab something quick and hop right back on the beach? Crush & Grind is your local one-stop-shop for gourmet coffee, craft beer and high-quality wine. Cool down with a sweet treat like snowcones, ice creams, Italian ices and gelatos at Island Ice Factory, Krazy Kones, or Latella Gelato. Just beyond the Boardwalk — and well worth the walk — is Squigley's Ice Cream & Treats, which serves more than 4,000 ice cream flavors and Celtic Creamery, serving authentic Irish ice cream to help cool off from the summer sun.
Bars, Drinks & Nightlife
From drinks in a neighborhood tavern to live music on an oceanview tiki bar, there's something for every lifestyle on or nearby the Boardwalk. The tiki bar at Seawitch Cafe is the perfect place to relax as the sun goes down, with drink specials and live music nearly every night of the week in the summer. The Hampton Inn & Suites Carolina Beach Oceanfront also has a tiki bar, Leaping Lizards, where you can step off the beach for a craft beer or cocktail by the fire pit during rare cooler months of the year.
Enjoy cold drinks, live music and ocean breezes from the deck at Hurricane Alley's overlooking the Boardwalk. If you're looking for more of a neighborhood watering hole, grab a beer at Buzz’s Roost or try their "Boardwalk Bum" cocktail. If you're looking for a great beer selection just steps off the Boardwalk, visit the Fat Pelican, featuring more than 350 beers and known as "One of the Best Dive Bars in America."
Souvenirs, beach gear, apparel and more await your perusal on the Boardwalk. Just across Lake Park Boulevard, Seaside Shenanigans Gift Boutique sells beachy cover-ups, clothing, accessories and fun coastal home decor.
There are lifeguard stands on the beach nearby the Boardwalk. Lifeguard season begins Memorial Day weekend and runs through Labor Day weekend. Lifeguards are on duty Friday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6:45 p.m.; and Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Public restrooms, outdoor showers and foot-rinse stations are available for guests and ATMs can be found at various locations throughout the Boardwalk area.
Book your oceanfront accommodations at one of the hotels along the Boardwalk. Courtyard by Marriott Carolina Beach Oceanfront features oceanfront suites with private balconies, a resort-style outdoor pool, indoor pool and Jacuzzi. The Hampton Inn & Suites Carolina Beach Oceanfront on the northern stretch of the Boardwalk has breathtaking room views and an oceanfront pool with Tiki Bar. A wide variety of other accommodations, including vacation rentals, are just a short bike ride from the Boardwalk.
The Boardwalk is open year-round, and attractions, amenities and events are seasonal. Please check individual listings for more information on times and dates.