North Carolina Family Vacation Day 4--boat ride, pirates and beach fun

On Tuesday, I awoke extra early. I was up and on the balcony at 6:30am. I just find that I don’t need as much sleep here. So I sat on the balcony and ate some cheese danish and read some of my library book, while enjoying the sights and sounds of the ocean. Around 7:15 I woke the kids up, got them dressed and breakfast as we had a fun morning ahead.

After breakfast, we headed out to a little town called Beaufort. This is the area that Hurricane Arthur made landfall at on Thursday night/Friday morning. Beaufort is an adorable town. We were heading there to take a dolphin watching boat ride aboard “The Lookout Express.” We left the harbor at 9:20 and the first wildlife that we saw as we left the dock area were a couple of wild horses on Carrot Island. That was pretty neat to see. Then we headed out to look for dolphins. The Lookout Express is a sailboat so we had to go under a drawbridge to head up the Newport River, where there are several pods of bottlenose dolphins that like to play and live. Captain Steve said that he thought the dolphins might have been scared away because of the hurricane, but he had seen them the day before. He turned on some reggae music and said that the dolphins liked the music. He also mentioned that before the hurricane had gone through that the water had been crystal blue and very pretty. However, since the hurricane, the water was a murky brownish blue color.  We saw only about 5-6 dolphins while we were in an area that the Captain described as prime dolphin territory. As we were heading back, we passed by a pirate ship that belongs to a real bonafide pirate who is registered with the United States government. As we were heading back toward the docks, we saw a TON of dolphins in the water, including a few that were jumping out of the water.  This was an area where the water was crystal blue and beautiful. The perfect conditions for the dolphins, I suppose. It was really neat to see, and Rebecca especially LOVED seeing the dolphins.

After we disembarked from the boat, we headed down the street to a restaurant named “Clawsons” for lunch. They had really good food. Rebecca and Jacob had cheese quesadilla and fries, Benjamin had grilled cheese and fries, Bill had an angus burger with fries and I had a Carolina BBQ pulled pork sandwich with homemade kettle chips. It was really, really good.

After lunch, we headed a little further down the street to the “North Carolina Maritime Museum”. This free museum is a quaint little museum that houses some awesome artifacts. In 1996, Blackbeard the Pirate’s famous ship, “The Queen Anne’s Revenge” was discovered off the coast of Beaufort in 25 feet of water. Over the years, they have salvaged some of the items and they are housed in the museum. It was neat to see some of the artifacts and to learn that it was maybe 1% of what they had found.

After leaving the museum, we decided to head back to the condo (which was about half hour drive) to recharge our batteries and cool down. The temperature was 93 and their was high humidity. The only saving grace was the sea breeze. When we got back to the condo, we noticed that the winds had kicked up pretty high and that the waves were very choppy. We decided to wait until after dinner to go out to the beach.

For dinner, I fixed chicken nuggets, green beans and mandarin oranges for the kids and I fixed chicken wings for Bill and I. Once again, we ate out on the balcony.

After dinner, we got changed to go out to the beach. Rebecca, Jacob and Bill played in the water, while Benjamin and I sat on the beach. The wind was kicking the sand up really high. While we were on the beach, 2 military helicopters flew over. Because of the wind we didn’t hear them until they were right over us.

After we came in, the kids got bathed and put to bed, and Bill and I went out on the balcony to relax with a wine cooler…classic lime margarita for me and Jamaican me Happy for Bill. I will be honest I was not a fan of the margarita flavor. Then it was off to bed after another great day on the Crystal Coast.

Stay tuned for Day 5! 


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