Sunrise, Aquarium, mini-golf, Good food and Storms

I am recapping our family summer vacation to Indian Beach, NC. To read more of our adventure, here are the days I have recapped so far: 
DAY 1: We went to Indian Beach
DAY 2: Ghost crabs and beach and pool time  
DAY 3: Fort Macon, Yummy food and date night
DAY 4: HOT weather and great ice cream
DAY 5, Part 1: Went to Raleigh to meet a friend from Australia
DAY 5, Part 2: 17 sea gulls and walking on the beach at night

Friday, July 15, started out bright and early for me. One of the things that I have never done when I have vacationed on the beach is to watch the sun rise. I will admit that I don't like to get up early. However, on this day I decided to set my alarm and just do it. I was up and out of the condo before 6AM. 

There were only a few other people out on the beach. I enjoyed being with the birds and just relaxing. The sunrise was glorious and worth every second of lost sleep! 

As I was walking back, I came upon a turtle's nest on the beach. 

When I got back to the condo, everyone was still asleep, so I went out on the balcony to read and wait for everyone to wake up. 

We decided to head out to the North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores as it was supposed to be another REALLY HOT day that day and it was one of the places the kids wanted to go before we had to head home on Sunday. (I was able to basically get us half price tickets by buying a Groupon a few weeks before we went!). The kids had a blast seeing all the different animals and walking the trails. They each were very brave and petted a horseshoe crab!

While we were out on the trails, the kids got to play on a new playground that the aquarium had put in. They also walked along the trails to the wetlands area. Jacob spotted a huge crab under water off of one of the lookout points. He was so excited to see it before anyone else. 

After the aquarium, we headed back to the condo to have lunch and relax a bit.  My sister and I dropped Bill and the kids off at the condo and we headed out to the "Big Oak Drive-In" to get lunch for the adults. This was rated as one of the best places to get food on the island. I ended up getting a fried flounder sandwich all the way and cole slaw for lunch. It was yummy!

We also had the adventure of Bill and Jacob trying a cricket. (Bill bought a box of crickettes (real crickets to eat) while we were in Raleigh the day before at the museum.) He decided to eat one and then I told the kids I would give them a dollar if they tried one...Jacob was the only one who took me up on it. He said it was gross! 

Later, we decided to head out to play a round of mini golf at Professor Hacker's Lost Treasure Golf. Bill, Rebecca, Jacob and Ben played. It was HOT, but they had fun. 

After mini-golf, we decided to head to dinner. We settled on eating at HWY 55...which is an old fashioned burger joint. Being that it was a little early, there was no wait to sit and the food was great! 

After dinner, we took the kids to Wings, to pick out a souvenir from the trip. While inside, it was looking more and more like it was going to storm. After we got our purchases, we headed back to the condo and made it back just before the storm hit. 

It was really cool seeing the storm coming from over the mainland and heading out past us to the sea. There was some heavy rain, lightening and some strong winds.  In fact, there were several beach chairs blown off balconies during the storm. 

After the storm passed, we headed down to the beach to walk and see if we could find any shells or anything interesting. There were a lot more shelly areas brought in from the storm and the kids had fun walking on the beach. 

The waves were fairly angry still, but overall it was a fun way to end another busy day on the crystal coast


  1. Hubs and I have been down there twice.....first in 2008 with the kids(and one of their friends too)and then alone in 2011(I think?). We stayed at Atlantic Beach(Hollowell's Family Motel)the first trip, a motel on Cedar Island by the ferry to Ocracoke the second trip.
    The aquarium was closed for renovations in 2008 and the kids were bummed out by that.
    I'd second that on our 2nd trip to that area we experienced one of the hottest days ever. Man was it brutal!
    If you ever go back you have to try the Sanitary Fish Market and Restaurant(it's been there since 1938)for a taste of old NC. It's in Moorehead City on the mainland.
    And go to Cape Lookout. You can climb the lighthouse in the Summer there and it's accessible only by ferry. We ran out of time to do that one.


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