Print This Sunset Beach Walking Tour to Level Up Your Vacation!
Enjoy Sunset Beach in a whole new way.
Sunset Beach, North Carolina, is known as one of the last remaining old-fashioned beach towns on the east coast. It is small, quaint, and super accessible by car, but also by foot or bicycle.
There are actually two parts that make up Sunset Beach: The Mainland and the Island. Connected by a fairly new (2010) bridge, vacationers will find points of interest and things to do on both sides of the bridge.
Today, we will literally walk you through a fun tour of both the Mainland and the Island of Sunset Beach, with plenty of stops for taking in the views, nature, exercise, and oh yeah.... ice cream and coffee, too. 😎
There are 7 wonderful stops on our Mainland Sunset Beach Tour. From start to finish, this stroll could take you as little as 7 minutes (since it's only about .3 miles), but we encourage you to hang out for a few minutes at each stop.
Scroll to the end of this blog for more information about each stop, and why each one made our list.
From here, you can walk or bike your way across the Mannon C. Gore bridge to the island (it's about a half mile from the Sunset Beach Park). OR, hop in your car and drive straight ahead to the public parking and gazebo.
Then, walk around the island for the second half of our walking tour!
Here are more details about our tour stops⤵
1. Maverick's Java - 303 Sunset Blvd N, Sunset Beach, NC 28468
From their website: "Mavericks Java & Bistro is a family owned and operated coffee and wine shop serving a simple breakfast menu that covers most appetites. We bake some of our pastries in-house. Our coffee is smooth and well-roasted. We serve espresso and espresso drinks, frappes, and smoothies made with real fruit. We brew our own iced tea, and hot tea is available."
2. Veterans' Memorial - 206 Sunset Blvd N, Sunset Beach, NC 28468
The Sunset Beach Veteran's Memorial was dedicated on Veterans Day, November 11, 2015 and is a lovely spot to sit for a moment and pay your respects to the men and women who have served (and are still serving) our country.
3. Sunset Beach Town Park - 206 Sunset Blvd N, Sunset Beach, NC 28468
Opened in May of 2015, this 5.2 acre waterfront park is just beautiful. You can sit on a swing, walk under the magnificent live oak trees, check out the fishing dock, look for birds from the observation platform and more. Read this blog to learn more about our Town Park.
4. Island Breeze - 101 Shoreline Dr E, Sunset Beach, NC 28468
Stop in this adorable shop for a moment of air conditioning and browse their selection of ladies accessories, clothing, and shoes. They also carry gifts, like wine tumblers, frames, and decor. Find more Sunset Beach shopping options in this blog.
5. Dave's Outpost - 205 Sunset Blvd N, Sunset Beach, NC 28468
Find everything you need to go fishing (including a license, bait, and more). This is a fun sports and rec store that has been serving Sunset Beach for ages. They are known for having both great service and great prices! Stop in if you need to get geared up to fish before you head over to our next stop...
6. Sunset Beach Boat Ramp & Fishing Pier - 101 Sunset Blvd N, Sunset Beach, NC 28468
The boat ramp was dedicated in 2012 to help provide easy access to our beautiful waterways, whether by boat, canoe or kayak. The fishing pier is located right next to the ramp for your convenience. Learn all about how to fish in Sunset Beach here.
7. The Boat Landing Restaurant - 102 Sunset Blvd N, Sunset Beach, NC 28468
Enjoy casual waterfront dining at the Boat Landing, with great views and even better Shrimp & Grits! A great end to a quick, Mainland Sunset Beach walking tour. Have some energy to spare? Keep going, by taking our Sunset Beach Island Tour... below!
Drive, walk or bike across the Mannon C Gore Bridge (the bridge is about a half mile, and it takes approx 30 minutes to walk from the Sunset Beach Town Park to the Sunset Beach fishing pier & free parking area). Known as the “new bridge” to the locals of Sunset Beach, this island access point was completed in October of 2010 and has two bicycle / walking lanes if you choose to skip the car.
Need parking? Once off the bridge, continue on Sunset Blvd. South straight to the public parking and Gazebo. Additional parking can be found at the pier parking lot (a daily fee is charged) and at designated spots on the island.
10. Julie's Rentals - 424 Sunset Blvd South, Sunset Beach, NC 28468
Open every day from 7am - 8pm, Julie's has rentals available for just about everything you could want! Here, you can rent a bicycle, kayak, boogie board, surfboard, paddleboard, or golf cart. They also rent out linens, baby gear (like high chairs, pack & plays, baby gates & more). It's definitely a good idea to get to know Julie's Rentals, since they can make your time on the island more fun and more convenient, too! Oh, and they have an in-house coffee shop called Coastal Grounds if you need a pick-me-up.
11. Sunset Beach Trading Company - 423 Sunset Blvd. Sunset Beach, NC 28468
Open every day from 7am - 8pm, Julie's has rentals available for just about everything you could want! Here, you can rent a bicycle, kayak, boogie board, surfboard, paddleboard, or golf cart! They also rent out linens, baby gear (like high chairs, pack & plays, baby gates & more). It's definitely a good idea to get to know Julie's Rentals, since they can make your time on the island more fun and more convenient, too! Oh, and they have an in-house coffee shop called Coastal Grounds if you need a pick-me-up.
12. Sunset Slush SB & Sandcastles Sweets & Treats - 426 Sunset Blvd S, Sunset Beach, NC
Full of classic candy that will make you smile, you can also grab a refreshing Italian Ice. This store smells wonderful and is a colorful, happy stop on your Sunset Beach walking tour. Use it as a bribe to keep the kids (or yourself) moving!
13. Sunset Beach "Vesta" Fishing Pier - 101 W. Main Street Sunset Beach, NC, 28468
Located in the center of the island is the southernmost fishing pier in North Carolina. Named for the buried civil war blockade-runner, Vesta, which rests in the sand under the pier, the 900 foot long pier is a favorite for anglers. A walk on the pier offers a self-guided tour providing information about the history of the island. If you choose to fish, your license will be covered under the pier's blanket license. Just want to walk out and enjoy the view? Pay just $1. There is also a small convenience store, restrooms, and a grill.
PRINTABLE: Sunset Beach Walking Tour
We have collected all of this information into one easy-to-use printable for your convenience!
Print it before your next Sunset Beach vacation and use it as a guideline when you are looking for something to do that isn't just "beach".
The Spectacular Sunset Beach Birding Trail
Did you know that North Carolina is home to over 440 bird species?
And you can see many of them on your next Sunset Beach vacation! Sit on the deck of your Sunset Vacations rental home and we bet you will spot several varieties. Venture out into the marshes or walk the beach to Bird Island and there's no telling how many types of birds you might encounter. READ MORE
Sunset Beach, NC may be a small town, but there are still many treasures to be found, both on the mainland and on the barrier island. We aren't just beautiful vacation homes! Although, if you are in need of a spot to lay your head when you visit Sunset Beach, our team at Sunset Vacations would be thrilled to help you narrow it down. Contact us today!