If you're looking for a laid-back atmosphere combined with unspoiled beaches and charm, Holden Beach is the place for you. One of five barrier islands that form the Brunswick Islands of North Carolina, it's a beautiful place to enjoy sweeping golden sands and fun days on the water; not to mention, Holden Beach has been named one of the best family beaches in the country by National Geographic Traveller.
Biking, surfing, boating, swimming, and sunbathing -- all of these are popular activities during the summer at Holden Beach. With its waterfront community, several beaches, plus a fishing pier, there's plenty to keep visitors busy.
Explore the Intracoastal Waterway by canoe, kayak or paddle board, and if you're lucky you might catch sight of a dolphin or two! At low tide, whole swarms of sea creatures are exposed in the small rock pools, making it a perfect place to observe marine wildlife.
After a long day, treat yourself to one of the many restaurants in town, afterwards browse the little shops and soak in the mellow, quiet vibe that fits perfectly with the scenic coastal paradise.
Visit in summer for tranquil beaches and fewer crowds.
Holden Beach is recognized as one of the premier family beaches in North Carolina.
Located in southern Brunswick County the town is an 8-mile-long barrier island on the Atlantic Ocean. To the north is the Intracoastal Waterway, while the west borders the Shallotte Inlet and the east is Lockwoods Folly.
Bring bikes, boats and boards to enjoy everything this tiny beachside resort has to offer or simply soak up some rays. The small-town charm of this family resort is what keeps tourists coming back year after year.
One of the best things to do in Holden Beach is take to the water. Paddleboards, kayaks and canoes are available to paddle down the Intracoastal Waterway -- remember to look out for the bottlenose dolphins playing in the surf. Similarly, walk along the inlets at low tide to explore the tidal pools filled with fish and wildlife.
There are plenty of places to stop off along the Intracoastal Waterway with several restaurants and cafes to grab a bite to eat and watch boats cruise by. Once a year, tourists flock to Holden Beach to enjoy the North Carolina Festival by the Sea which is a celebration of arts, crafts and seafood.
Golfers can enjoy a game at Lockwood Folly Country Club -- the only member-owned golf course in Brunswick County. The hidden gem is surrounded by Lockwood Folly River and the Intracoastal Waterway and has beautifully kept fairways, ponds and lots of wildlife.
In the surrounding Brunswick Islands, there is lots to discover about the rich history of the area. The state’s oldest lighthouses, Old Baldy and Oak Island Lighthouse, offer tours and the opportunity to climb to the top. The ruins of Brunswick Town date back to colonial times and families can go to the Museum of Coastal Carolina which has tales of nautical adventures and the maritime history. Wildlife havens in the Brunswick Islands host plenty of marine life and rare birds. Turtle watch programs run throughout the year and there’s the opportunity to see loggerhead sea turtles in their natural habitat.
Choosing a vacation rental in Holden Beach gives vacationers the chance to relax near the beach and wildlife. There is a wide variety of beach vacation rentals which offer several bedrooms, easy access to the beach, and ocean views.
The best time to visit Holden Beach is during May when the temperatures are warm but rates are much lower than at peak season in the summer. The temperatures tend to be in the mid 70 degrees F in May, much cooler than the 90 degrees F that Holden Beach experiences in the hotter months. August and into October sees the rainiest times of year for Holden Beach.
Located in North Carolina, Holden Beach has a wealth of things to do and see, making for the ultimate family vacation destination. Visitors come from all over to enjoy the huge range of water sports on offer, from biking, boarding and kayaking to beach games and dolphin watching, the area has it all.
Wait until low tide on the family beaches and explore the small pools which are filled with a range of marine life, or have lunch in one of the many beach cottage restaurants along the shore. If you get a Holden Beach rental at the right time, you can enjoy the North Carolina Festival by the Sea, a celebration of arts and crafts and delicious local seafood.
There's also the option of staying in an oceanfront home with beach access and great views of the sea every morning. Alternatively, Holden Beach condo rentals can come with hot tubs and private pools. Vacation rentals in Holden Beach are a great place for a family reunion, and with a wide variety of vacation homes at your fingertips, book in advance to avoid missing out on the best picks.