Nags Head Dolphin Watch Tours

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.”

Phoenix –  Nags Head Causeway // Kitty Hawk Kites/Whalebone

Located at 7517 South Virginia Dare Trail on the south side of NC 64 Hwy that connects Nags Head and Roanoke Island.  You will board the Phoenix at the Kitty Hawk Kites Whalebone Watersports site - yellow building with a blue roof.  Also available at this site you can rent kayaks, standup paddleboards and jet skis so make a day of it.  Next door is Fresh Fit Cafe,  serving breakfast, lunch and great smoothies. Book Now!

Safari – South Nags Head // Oregon Inlet Fishing Center

This is our newest and largest boat!  The SAFARI is in the Oregon Inlet Fishing Center located at 8770 Oregon Inlet Road, Nags Head, NC  27959 (some mapping programs find us at 98 NC Hwy 12, Nags Head, NC  27959).  This is a full service marina and ships store with snacks, drinks, souvenirs and tackle.  On Site are 46 charter boats and "head boat" to meet all your fishing needs.  Also, there is a NC Fish & Wildlife Boat Ramp for launching your own boat. Book Now!

Miss Bodie Island – Manteo //Shallowbag Bay Marina

You will board the Miss Bodie Island at Shallow Bag Bay Marina located at 700  N. Bay Club Drive, Manteo, NC  27954 (between Darryl's Restaurant and McDonald's).  Park in any non-reserved parking space.  We are at the floating dock in front of the pool and clubhouse area.  For added convenience to our guests, Stripers Bar and Grill is located onsite so you can enjoy a great meal or a cool drink on the waterfront deck before or after your dolphin tour.  Don't forget to visit Historic Downtown Manteo while you are here. Book Now!

A dolphin - Nags Head Dolphin Watch

Along the way, researchers will talk about their work and share their discoveries from their ongoing study.

Nags Head Dolphin Watch

While the boat is moving, dolphins will be playing in their natural habitat alongside the vessel. Passengers will also learn about the pelicans, osprey and other birds that congregate in the sounds, as well as the ecology and history of this dynamic area.

Nags Head Dolphin Watch Tours are given twice daily on Monday and Saturday, and three times daily Tuesday through Friday.

Call ahead at 252-441-4124 or toll free at (877)FLY-THIS for times and reservations.

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View of a dolphin from Nags Head Dolphin Watch


Three dolphins - Nags Head Dolphin Watch

Adventurers watch and photograph dolphins from a Nags Head Dolphin Watch tour

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Nags Head
Nags Head
*Off-season hours may vary*
Call 252-449-8999 for current hours.
  • Monday07:00AM-10:00PM
  • Tuesday07:00AM-10:00PM
  • Wednesday07:00AM-10:00PM
  • Thursday07:00AM-10:00PM
  • Friday07:00AM-10:00PM
  • Saturday07:00AM-10:00PM
  • Sunday07:00AM-10:00PM
Ben Franklin

Stop by Nags Head's Ben Franklin at Mile Post 10 on the Bypass where you will find everything you need for the beach! From Clothing, T-shirts and Swimwear to Boards, Chairs, Umbrellas and Tackle. You'll find it all…and of course, we have the best selection of Souvenirs anywhere on the Outer Banks. Enjoy your vacation! Independently owned by a member of one of the Outer Banks’ oldest families, the Ben Franklin store is stocked with just about everything a visitor would need to go to the beach.


Ben Franklin stores were once part of a five-and-dime retail empire, with about 2,500 locations across the country in its heyday. As decades passed and the times and customers began to change, many closed their doors, leading to fewer than 150 of these nostalgic shops. Nags Head Ben Franklin, however, has withstood the test of time and adapted to the needs of its customers to provide a memorable shopping experience on the Outer Banks.


Debbie Terry Tolson, manager of the Ben Franklin location in Nags Head, recalls working with former owner Tommie Daniels. Daniels’ father, Moncie Daniels, started the business in downtown Manteo in the early 1900s. The Daniels family has been a longstanding fixture in the Outer Banks business community—Moncie even sold gas to the Wright brothers in 1903.


Tommie, with an excellent business mind, saw the opportunity the new Bypass presented and, in 1977, he opened the Nags Head location of Ben Franklin. He was one of the first businesses on the Bypass,” Tolson says.In addition to a new location, the Ben Franklin store saw a new group of customers.


“People would come from all around because Tommie had a little bit of everything—it was more like a five and 10 then,” Tolson explains. “As he went to the beach, he began to get more tourists, so he started catering more and more to visitors.”


Today, the 21,000-square-foot souvenir shop quickly catches the attention of anyone driving by thanks to the ocean-themed mural that decorates the façade of the building, painted by local artist Rob Snyder. This Ben Franklin location has become the must-stop shop for both first-time visitors to the area and generations of families who escape to the Outer Banks annually.


Tolson credits the great prices and friendly customer service to the success of the location, which keeps families returning.“People come in all the time and tell me, ‘my grandmother or my grandfather used to bring me here and now I’m bringing my children,’” she shares. “One of my favorite parts about working here is seeing the people come back year after year.”