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Emerald Isle Beach

Emerald Isle Named Clearest Waters & Whitest Sand in North Carolina – 2024 Southern Living
Emerald Isle Voted Best Beach in North Carolina
2024 Reader’s Digest
Emerald Isle Voted #2 Beach in the South – 2023 USA Today Readers’ Choice Awards
Emerald Isle Voted #1 North Carolina Beach – 2020 U.S. News and World Report

Emerald Isle beach is a popular vacation spot for couples, families and groups of all sizes. You’re sure to love this little slice of the North Carolina coast for its natural beauty, delicious seafood and miles of gorgeous beaches. Plan your next vacation, getaway or reunion on the beautiful beaches in Emerald Isle!

Girl playing in sand on beautiful beaches in Emerald Isle

Emerald Isle is situated at the western end of Bogue Banks on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast. Emerald Isle is known for its miles of beautiful beaches that boast soft, golden sands and breathtaking emerald waters. This spectacular stretch of coastline is a haven for marine life and a variety of birds and waterfowl, among other wildlife. It’s 12 miles of beaches are perfect for enjoying an abundance of outdoor activities such as fishing, birding, boating, paddle boarding, hiking, shelling and much more!

Spend your days basking on the shores and taking in the amazing views of the Atlantic Ocean. Walk, bike or hike your way around town with miles of bike paths and nature trails that wind through lush, green maritime forest and along the sandy beaches. Cast a line off Bogue Inlet Pier or reserve a private charter for fishing or a scenic tour of the coast. End the day with a visit to The Point, located on the westernmost tip of the island, for some of the most spectacular sunset views on the coast.

Beautiful sunrise on the beaches in Emerald Isle, North Carolina

The surrounding beach communities of Bogue Banks are some of the most beautiful in the country. From the more secluded beaches of Indian Beach to the ever-popular beaches found at Atlantic Beach, you’re sure to find the perfect spot.

This family-friendly beach town is also home to one of the widest selections of vacation homes on the Crystal Coast ranging from quaint beach cottages to luxurious condos and Sand Castle vacation homes, perfect for beach weddings and family gatherings of any size.

Emerald Isle Beach Access Areas

A number of Emerald Isle beach access areas are available to the public. Many of these access points have restrooms and shower facilities for your convenience.

Third Street Access
305 Ocean Dr.
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Features: 10 parking spaces, handicap ramp, overlook picnic area

Western Regional Access*
299 Islander Dr.
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Features: 167 parking spaces, bathrooms, outdoor showers, volleyball courts, picnic gazebo

Blackskimmer Access
7500 Ocean Dr.
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Features: 4-wheel drive access point during winter, single handicap parking space

Eastern Regional Access*
2700 Emerald Dr.
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Features: 245 parking spaces, picnic gazebo, outdoor showers, bathrooms, drink machines

Wyndtree Access
10535 Wyndtree Dr.
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Features: Single handicap parking space

Emerald Isle Woods Park
7500 Emerald Drive
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Location: Off of Coast Guard Road, turn right before reaching Deer Horn Dunes
Features: 41-acre park, walking trails, sound access

Station Street Park
11001 Coast Guard Road
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Features: Parking area

Cedar Street Park
7500 Emerald Drive
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Location: End of Cedar Street on the Sound Side
Features: 10 parking spaces, pier, public sound access

Channel Drive Access
11001 Station Street
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Location: Intersection of Station St. & Coast Guard Road; access via Channel Dr.
Features: 16 parking spaces

Randy’s Way Access
9519 Ocean Dr.
Emerald Isle, NC 28594
Features: Single handicap parking space

Emerald Isle Beach Parking

Paid parking is now underway at two of Emerald Isle’s beach access points, the Eastern and Western Ocean Regional accesses. From April 15 through September 17, 2023, NCParking Kiosks will be in place to accept payments for parking. Signage and ambassadors will also be on-site to assist drivers as needed.

Beach Parking Timeframe

April 15 through September 17, 2023
8am to 6pm, 7 days a week

Beach Parking Fees

Paid parking ranges in cost from $2 to $4 per hour (maximum amount paid per day of $16)

Acceptable payment methods include debit or credit card. Patrons may also download the Passport parking app to pay for a parking spot.

Beach Parking Passes

Parking pass applications are available online or at the Emerald Isle Police Department (7500 Emerald Drive).

Emerald Isle taxpayers are eligible for 2 free parking passes and Emerald Isle business owners and handicapped/100% disabled vet/purple heart are eligible for 1 free parking pass.


Visit the Emerald Isle town website for more information on paid beach parking.