Coastal North Carolina Comes Calling 2

When planning for your next beach getaway, give neighboring Wrightsville Beach and Wilmington, N.C., some of your time out by the water. Just about a half-day’s drive from Atlanta takes you close to breathtaking sunsets and sandy beaches that your family will love indulging in. Fishing piers, a historic downtown, trendy restaurants… all just a stone’s throw away so you can enjoy a variety of vacation experiences in one destination. Whether you are out and about with the kids, traveling with friends or just getting away from it all, coastal North Carolina has you covered. 
From historic buildings to movie locations, Civil War stories to nightly ghost walks, Wilmington is a city full of surprises and diversity with a charm and style of its own. This historic port city has roots that go back almost three centuries. Every corner you turn reveals something unexpected, especially when you are walking along the historic downtown admiring beautiful locations that might seem mighty familiar, considering the thriving movie industry. A World War II battleship, horse drawn carriages, and splendid museums render this city perfect for a family weekend away. From here, it's easy to get to Wrightsville Beach in minutes. The intra-coastal waterway lends itself to all water sport activities be it swimming, sunbathing, beachcombing, fishing, stand up paddling or surfing. 
For the movie buffs – The presence of EUE Screen Gems Studios has resulted in many movies and TV shows being shot here. Visit the studio’s ten stages during a walking tour of their movie sets and hear about all the productions that have and are currently shooting here. In the city, you can take the Hollywood walking tour and you will recognize many familiar spots from Iron Man to One Tree Hill.
For the foodies – Taste Carolinas is a unique walking tasting tour experience you don’t have the advantage of in other cities but in Wilmington it is available and recommended. Manna and Caprice are other restaurants in the area worth the visit. While one serves new American cuisine, the other is a French bistro with a Belgian twist. In Wrightsville Beach, try the Oceanic, Bluewater Grill or Dockside and be sure to visit Motts Seafood Channel for fresh fish and carefully curated condiments. 
For the history geeks – Get spooked out already on one of the nightly ghost tours and visit one or more historic homes located in the district. You can also do a walking, horse-drawn carriage or Segway tour of the neighborhood and see the different styles of architecture that make up this diverse community. Other history related attractions are the Wrightsville Beach Museum of History and the Railroad Museum.
For the nature nerds – The intra-coastal waterways produce a unique tidal creek ecosystem and you can learn about that at the beautiful Airlie Gardens, which used to be a turn of the century residence. There is also the Wrightsville Beach Scenic tours cruise with Captain Joe where you can do a nature walk on Masonboro Island, the longest undisturbed barrier island ecosystem in southern North Carolina, accessible only by boat.
Wondering where to stay? The Graystone Inn close to the historic district is an area bed and breakfast famed for their service, décor, breakfasts and wine hour. Closer to the beach, the Hilton Holiday Inn provides fabulous views and direct access to the water. With so much to offer, how can you really say no to a destination getaway like Wilmington? Of course, if you choose to spend all your time at the beach in Wrightsville, nobody will blame you.