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Outer Banks Off Road

Outer Banks Off-Road

The Outer Banks, with its spectacular natural beauty, offers visitors opportunities to enjoy pleasures that are far from commonplace. Here, you can drive your four-wheel-drive vehicle along the many miles of accessible beach as you search for that perfect fishing spot, or sit around a bonfire with the backdrop of the ocean waves. All of this can be enjoyed, but there are a few regulations that must be followed.

Off-Road Vehicles (ORV)

Driving an off-road vehicle (ORV) on the beach can be fun where beach driving is permitted, please observe the following rules:

  • The suggested speed limit is 15 mph
  • Enter and leave the beach only at designated, open ramps (never between or on the dunes)
  • Drive only on the portion of the beach that lies between the foot of the dunes and the ocean
  • Proceed with caution and consideration for other beach visitors
  • All vehicles must have a state road registration and valid license plate
  • The operator of the vehicle must have a current driver's license

 

Duck

ORV's are permitted on these Outer Banks beaches between October 1 and April 30. No permit required. For more information on beach driving, contact the respective town's administrative office at: Duck: 252-255-1234 and Kitty Hawk: 252-261-3552.

Kill Devil Hills and Nags Head

Beach driving on these Outer Banks beaches is only allowed between October 1 and April 30. In order to operate an ORV on the beach in Nags Head, visitors must apply for and receive a permit from the Nags Head Town Hall. Permits will be granted only with accompanying proof of state registration. Kill Devil Hills does not require a permit. For more information contact the respective town's administrative office at: Kill Devil Hills: 252-449-5300 and Nags Head: 252-441-5508.
 

Cape Hatteras National Seashore

Use of ORV's on the Outer Banks beaches of Cape Hatteras National Seashore is permitted year-round with limitations. Oceanfront beaches located in the Outer Banks towns of Rodanthe, Waves, Salvo, Avon, Buxton, Frisco and Hatteras are closed to vehicles from May to September every year. Driving on beaches at Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge is strictly prohibited. ORV accesses to beaches are open to vehicles by designated ramps only. For current information on ORV areas, contact National Park Service Headquarters at 252-473-2111 or visit any visitor center located throughout the park.

Southern Shores

No motorized vehicles allowed on the beach.
Information provided by the Outer Banks Visitors Bureau.