Posted on 12/1/2020

Pet-Friendly Outer Banks

Dogs. Not just pets, but also family. With the increasing availability of pet-friendly vacation rentals, it comes to no surprise that more and more folks are asking, "what else is pet-friendly?" Apart from the Fido friendliness of our beaches, there's plenty more going on!

All OBX beaches allow dogs, but with varying rules on times of day and leash lengths. For a details by town, check out our breakdown on rules.



A great sight-seeing opportunity doesn't have to be limited to just humans -- get your dog involved! Soundside kayaking is a great family activity that even your pooch can enjoy. We strongly recommend a life jacket for the pup while on a boat, and will list pet stores below in which one may be purchased.


Get both pet and parent heart rate up with a hike through our maritime forests!

All local trails allow for leashed dogs. Just ensure your pet is up-to-date on tick and heartworm preventatives before hitting the trail, as both are prevalent on the OBX.

We have a great blog detailing all of the OBX nature trails, but we're going to feature some of our favorites below.

Nags Head Woods

West Ocean Acres Drive (MP 9.5) - Kill Devil Hills

Photo: Alan Swartz/Flickr

The beautiful Nature Conservancy will not disappoint if youre in the market for a full immersion in nature. Surrounded by maritime forest, dunes, marshland, and wildlife, this 1,400 acre preserve was officially designated a National Natural Landmark in 1974. There are multiple walking trails to venture down, ranging in length from a 0.5 mile ADA accessible trail to 5 miles worth of intricate trails. On your stroll, enjoy observing the more than 100 bird species, 15 amphibian species, 7 fish species, and 28 reptile species that call Nags Head Woods home!


Kitty Hawk Woods

The Woods Road, Kitty Hawk
Site Brochure

Photo: Outer Banks This Week

Tucked away in the northwest corner of Kitty Hawk, atop relict ancient sand dunes, lies a nature preserve teeming with biodiversity. Kitty Hawk Woods is one of the largest tracts of maritime forest, deciduous swamp, and marshland in the entire state of North Carolina. The preserved land also includes sound-front beaches and small, uninhabited islands in the Albemarle Sound. A two-mile trail works its way through the 1,824 acres of natural land.

Access this trail at the parking area located at the North end of Woods Road; by foot along Woods Road, and on the westside of Eckner Street, Birch Land and Amadas Road; by paddleboard, kayak, or boat. Public boat access is located on Bob Perry Road.

Interesting finds in Kitty Hawks Woods include some rarities, as its home to four globally rare plants. This includes: southern twayblade, American featherfoil, coastal goldenrod, wooly beach heather, and hop hornbeam.

A great place for birding, one can find a variety of indigenous and migratory birds.

Currituck Banks Reserve