The NC Blogger Network’s 2016 NC Holiday Gift Guide is out!! Make sure to check it out as The Southern Belle’s Garden from yours truly is listed! You’ll find some great gift ideas that come straight from North Carolina! Check here to view the guide.
Robb and I have been trying to make sure that we get out of the house on some of these January weekend days (of course, the ones that are warm and sunny, not cold, yucky and rainy like yesterday). Our first adventure was to the Great Dismal Swamp, followed by Merchant Millpond, and last weekend – Jockey’s Ridge.
We have a conservation farm that we plan to take the dogs to soon, hopefully. None of these locations are really out of the way for us and it’s nice to explore places that I haven’t been to in 10+ years!
(numerous locations, but I prefer the Kitty Hawk one best)
710 S Croatan Hwy,
Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina
Jockey’s Ridge State Park
Nags Head at milepost 12 on the Hwy 158 Bypass
Mama Kwan’s Tiki Bar and Grill
1701 S Croatan Highway
Kill Devil Hills, NC 27948
I had a friend come up this weekend so we decided to head over to Manteo for the day. It had been years since I’ve been to Manteo, which is a shame since it’s maybe an hour and a half away. Our first stop was historic downtown Manteo, where we browsed the farmer’s market and walked the boardwalk.
After a quick lunch at Ortega’z (delicious, I had the fish tacos with mahi mahi and my friend had the buffalo shrimp po’boy) and some ice cream, we headed over to the aquarium. We walked around for a bit, oohing and aahing at the different sea life that the aquarium had (and also trying to avoid getting eaten by a T-Rex).
We headed to the Elizabethan Gardens and I looked forward to just meandering through the grounds. There were so many paths that we could wonder down, it was fabulous. I really enjoyed looking at the herb garden near the front – I was thrilled to see a lot of the same herbs as I have in my own collection. I purchased a bottle of Mothervine Scuppernong Grape Juice, a Foxglove plant, and a St. John’s Wort plant for my collection.
Our last stop, which was what I most looked forward to, was the Alligator River Refuge. We were there to take part in one of the Spring Red Wolf Howlings (you can read more about it in the June issue of ‘Our State’ magazine). Our guide was so informative and after an introduction to the red wolves, we all piled back into our vehicles and made our way down to the refuge. I was third in line and could see piles of dust being kicked up behind me. My car is still covered in dust!
Fortunately, I was at the front because the wolves had already started howling when we arrived at our destination. Those at the end of the caravan missed the howls, which is a shame but I hope that doesn’t deter them from trying again. However, I highly recommend adding this as a stop on your trip.