Ocracoke Travel Guide

Browse 5 travel reviews, 3 travel blogs and 112 travel photos from real travelers to Ocracoke.

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Ocracoke Overview

You can only get to Ocracoke Island by boat or plane. Ocracoke is in Hyde County and is one of the barrier islands of the Outer Banks of North Carolina where the pirate Blackbeard is known to have once hung out. The island is noted for fishing and birdwatching.

The first European visitor was probably Sir Walter Raleigh's 1585 colony in their flagship, "Tiger" which ran aground on a sand bar in Ocracoke Inlet and was forced to land on the island for repairs.

The name Ocracoke is undoubtedly Indian in origin. It was shown on the earliest maps as "Woccocon". In 1715, the name had become Ococcock and soon after shown on maps as Ocracoke.

Established as a port in 1715, Ocracoke (pronounced OHK-ruh-coke) grew in importance until 1787, when 697 vessels reached North Carolina through Ocracoke Inlet. The village of Ocracoke, on the southern soundside, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1990. It includes the 1823 Ocracoke Lighthouse as well as several historic commercial building and over 100 homes.

The town is laid out with Old World irregularity along sandy streets overhung with moss-covered oaks and yaupon.

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