While visiting my sister in North Carolina a few years ago, my friends and I took a little trip to Jockey’s Ridge State Park, found by Nag’s Head on the Outer Banks in North Carolina. Jockey’s Ridge features impressive sand dunes, overlooking the ocean. The park is large enough to walk around for awhile, actually, it seems to continue on forever!
Jockey’s Ridge is actually the largest natural sand dune system in the Eastern U.S. and is a great place to spend a morning or afternoon. Besides walking around the park itself, there are picnic shelters where you can have a break and eat, and there is a small museum with information on the park and the formation of the dunes.
Upon arriving, we left our shoes in the big shoe pile, and walked up to the main park which featured the impressive sand dunes. We took off our shoes because everyone else was doing it (and that’s always a good idea..) but the sand was quite hot, and after about an hour in the park our feet were red and a little burned. Even though I prefer to walk in the sand barefoot, I think next time I will carry my shoes along, for when the sand became unbearable. I also went to the park in the middle of July, which is when North Carolina is at it’s hottest, so in early spring or fall, I bet you could walk comfortably in the sand.
Jockey’s Ridge is a great place to bring a kite, as the strong wind will lift even the saddest of kites off the ground. According to the website, you could even go hang gliding here, if you are properly licensed. What an amazing experience that must be!
As you can see below, there are many people in and around the dunes, but there are also many areas with fewer people which you are free to walk around. The park extends for miles, and for those who are brave enough, and in the proper shoes to take a hike, I am sure you would find some interesting plants, lovely scenery, and great views of the neighboring ocean.
Have you visited any amazing sand dunes? Where are they located?