on our way south to hatteras through rodanthe, we passed a dilapidated, deserted amusement park on the side of highway 12. i made matt vow to stop on our way back so that i could take some photographs, and he made good on that promise (though admittedly, i initially came down with a case of cold feet when we returned — this place is cree-py).
some extensive googling informed us that this was a family-owned and much loved park until very recently, and once the familial patriarch passed away, his widow was unable to care for it and his children wanted nothing to do with it. strangely enough, it is still listed as an active tourist attraction on many outer banks travel sites.
we spent most of day three on the beach collecting seashells before hopping on the ferry to ocracoke, another barrier island on the outer banks. as a ferry boat veteran, i was rather impressed by the 30-car, 45-minute free ride to the island. once you make land, it is about a 13-mile drive, sandy coasts on both sides, before you arrive at a string of little restaurants and shops. we settled on dajio, a little seafood spot where we sat outside under strings of lights, drank local beers, and i enjoyed my first (ever!) oysters and clams before a delicious greek salad.
we obviously had to squeeze in a last sunset, too. unbeatable ’round those parts.
on our first morning in hatteras, after a healthy serving of pancakes and coffee at the bed and breakfast, we made our way down to the shore for a long walk. an early afternoon rainstorm booted us from the beach, so we took this opportunity to have a nap and a shower before climbing the cape hatteras lighthouse and visiting the museum (it has an incredible story which you can read about here).
post-dinner on the pier and pre-turning in, we found some high ground on the marshy bay side where we could enjoy the sunset. truly a sight to behold.