Merry and Bright From the Boardwalk to Beach

Experience the holidays at Carolina Beach all month long at an array of events at the Island of Lights Festival. Watch boats decorated in their holiday best cruise along the water at the Flotilla, take in the Christmas parade anchored by Santa, see houses adorned in decorations at the Holiday Tour of Homes and ring in the New Year with a beach ball drop. There's nothing quite like a coastal-infused holiday getaway.



Making Spirits Bright

Enjoy a coastal twist on Christmas with the Island of Lights Festival. Beginning with Lighting at the Lake, kids can visit with Santa and a trek along a one-mile decorated trail ringing in the holiday spirit. Featuring themed floats and marching bands, the Christmas Parade fills the streets with yuletide cheer. Get inspired by coastal resident's decor at Island of Lights Holiday Tour of Homes. Merry, bright and setting sail, the Christmas Flotilla takes decorations to the water.

Coastal Christmas

Grab a cup of hot cocoa and make lasting memories at the 10th annual Christmas by the Sea. The Carolina Beach Boardwalk radiates holiday cheer with twinkling lights accompanied by interactive exhibits like Santa in his workshop, a 22 piece orchestra playing Christmas favorites, carolers, pony rides, arts, crafts and ornament making.

Underwater Winter Wonderland

The N.C. Aquarium at Fort Fisher transforms into an underwater winter wonderland for the Cape Fear Festival of Trees. Take time to explore Carolina Beach State Park where ideal temperatures make for uninhibited outdoor adventure. Browse coastal-centric gifts at the Carolina Beach Holiday Market, or nearby on the island, take care of your shopping list while taking in ocean views at the Kure Beach Holiday Market.

Holly Jolly Night Out

Have a festive night out on the town. It doesn't get more 'dive bar' than The Fat Pelican decked out in holiday cheer and stocked with over 350 different beers. Sip seasonal ales at Good Hops Brewing or enjoy craft cocktails and farm-to-table fare at Surf House Oyster Bar & Surf Camp. From fresh caught seafood to hot chocolate and coffee treats, dining on the island features seasonal delights for all.

Ring in 2019

Celebrate the New Year nearby on the island at Island of Lights New Year’s Eve Celebration at Kure Beach Ocean Front Park and Pavilion. Featuring a DJ, dancing, refreshments and party favors for purchase, this family-friendly event is a great way to ring in 2019. Here, the countdown is as coastal as can be, featuring a giant beach ball drop at midnight and epic fireworks after.

Colorful Carolina Beach guarantees adventures that you and your loved ones will find puts a different kind of spin on the holidays. Choose from one of our many hotels, B&Bs, cozy beach cottages or vacation rental properties to ring in the season.