Scientists run these dolphin tours as part of their research on these beloved aquatic animals, so you know this will be an interesting trip. Passengers will be able to see how researchers with the Outer Banks Center for Dolphin Research, a nonprofit organization, conduct their research and hear about some of the discoveries from more than a decade of studies and monitoring. Some of the hundreds of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins in the area show up so frequently they’ve even been given names, like “Rake,” “Scarlet,” and “Onion.”
The modern-day Bodie Island region from Nags Head to Oregon Inlet is sparsely developed, but nevertheless a popular destination for nature lovers and anglers alike. Visitors will find the following activities, attractions and amenities just miles away from the town borders of Nags Head, and all close to the distinguished Bodie Island Lighthouse.
Oregon Inlet Fishing Center - This massive marina is home to dozens of local charter fishing businesses and tour boats, as well as public boat launches, gas for mariners, and a ship's store.
Whalebone Junction - This small Visitors Center located just south of where NC Highway 12, US 158 and US 264 intersect, offers a small information center, public restrooms, and plenty of picturesque, rugged scenery.
Cape Hatteras National Seashore Campground - This seasonally operational campground, close to Oregon Inlet, offers 120 rustic campsites for tents and RVs. Open from the third weekend in April through Columbus Day Weekend, this popular campground is exceptionally close to Nags Head, as well as great fishing and beautiful beaches.
Bird watching - Visitors who are cruising along NC Highway 12 will spot a number of wooded bird stands that are stationed along the roadside from the town borders of Nags Head to Oregon Inlet. Open to the public, visitors can park just off the road and admire the soundside wildlife year-round, at any time of day or night.
Beach Driving - A Beach Driving Permit Office is located at the National Park Service Campground on Bodie Island, and there are three ORV access ramps in between Oregon Inlet and Nags Head. Remember that a NPS beach permit is required to drive on the Cape Hatteras National Seashore
Coquina Beach - Located just south of the Nags Head town borders, this beach is renowned for its exceptional fishing, 4WD vehicular access, and thousands of colorful coquina clams that seasonally burrow along the ocean wash.