outer banks, fishing pier, dock, lighthouse

9 of the Best Attractions on Roanoke Island

06/12/2020 | by Joseph Mitchell | Outer Banks Attractions and Activities

The Outer Banks is home to a collection of towns and areas along the North Carolina coast, each with its own unique flare. However, you won’t find the array of attractions on Roanoke Island anywhere else along the coast. Whether you want to learn about the area’s rich history or enjoy a leisurely walk through a gorgeous garden, you’ll find it on our island!

For more ways to make the most of your Outer Banks trip, be sure to download our complimentary Vacation Guide!

The Best Attractions on Roanoke Island

Elizabethan Gardens

The stunning Elizabethan Gardens consists of 10 manicured acres bordering the Roanoke Sound, where plants, flowers, sculptures, and more create a beautiful and peaceful atmosphere. You can check what’s in bloom every month of the year, so you know what to expect when you visit!

Island Farm

The Island Farm in Manteo is a fun, interactive, and historical area in the center of Roanoke Island where kids and adults can experience coastal life in the mid-1800s. You can explore the 125 acres of the Island Farm in Manteo on a tour during your next trip to the island!

Outer Banks Aquarium

The Outer Banks Aquarium is an excellent place for kids and adults to discover and learn about the native marine life in the Outer Banks. You’ll see a beautiful mix of stunning aquatic life ranging from sharks to sea turtles. They also offer a variety of tours, activities, and unique experiences for guests!

The Lost Colony

The Lost Colony explains the story of Sir Walter Raleigh’s English settlement at one of the most exciting attractions on Roanoke Island. The outdoor performance runs throughout the summer in a beautiful outdoor amphitheater overlooking Roanoke Sound. 

Fort Raleigh National Historic Site

The Fort Raleigh Historic Site in Manteo, NC, preserves the area of England’s first colony in North America. All that’s left of this Roanoke Island attraction are mounds of earthwork that indicate the site of the fort. 

Roanoke Island Festival Park

Adults and kids will love exploring the beautiful Roanoke Island Festival Park. You’ll find several attractions, including a representational ship from the 1585 English voyage to the island, a constructed American Indian town, and an English settlement site! There’s also a large outdoor space for concerts and events.

Roanoke Maritime Museum

You can learn about the local and regional maritime heritage at the Roanoke Maritime Museum. This downtown Manteo attraction features exhibits showcasing watercraft, restoration projects, and the rich history of boat building of Roanoke Island. 

Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse

It may not be the classic Outer Banks lighthouse that most people envision, but this reconstruction of the old Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse is still worth visiting during your time in downtown Manteo. 

Historic Downtown Manteo Farmers Market

The Historic Downtown Manteo Farmers Market is a popular summertime tradition from mid-May to the beginning of October. Visitors and residents walk the streets on Saturday mornings browsing the many local produce, flower, and craft vendors! It’s a great time to pick up a souvenir to commemorate your trip!

Plan Your Roanoke Island AdventureThe Roost rental near downtown Manteo

Pirate’s Cove Realty offers visitors the ultimate Outer Banks vacation. Our extensive list of Roanoke Island vacation rentals includes condos and homes in a variety of locations on Roanoke Island. You can choose from a gated community with tons of amenities to the downtown Manteo area, where you’re steps from shopping and dining.

Start planning your trip today by booking one of our rentals! We look forward to welcoming you to the Outer Banks.