Embark on a Journey of Discovery and Wellness

Located between the Atlantic Ocean and the Cape Fear River, you’re never far from the water at Kure Beach. From kayaking adventures to shipwreck diving and under-the-sea yoga, it’s easy to find rejuvenation or get active on our island and waterways.

Read on or find the full list of recreation and wellness attractions.

KAYAKING

Embark on a kayak adventure to Shark Tooth Island with Kayak Carolina. The staff expertly teaches beginners to safely navigate the Cape Fear River while experienced kayakers are able to paddle ahead at their own pace. Upon arrival, enjoy a break on the uninhabited island as adults and children alike search for seashells and much-coveted shark teeth. Other nearby kayak outfitters include Pleasure Island Rentals and Paddle NC.

To experience one of the most important shorebird feeding habitats on the East Coast while also getting in a workout, take a kayak to Zeke’s Island Reserve. Bird species such as dunlin, black-bellied plovers, short-billed dowitchers, white ibis, and great blue herons call this part of the Cape Fear River region home. Or explore the area’s waterways through surfing, stand-up paddleboarding, fishing and more.

Diving

Kure Beach and the surrounding area are home to hundreds of fascinating dive sites that can be seen far below the surface. Visitors can discover captivating prehistoric fossils on the ocean’s natural ledges. The North Carolina Underwater Archeology Branch, located at Fort Fisher State Historic Site in Kure Beach, is responsible for everything found in North Carolina waters. To experience the historic shipwrecks for yourself, charter a dive from one of the island's professional SCUBA companies, Carolina Diving Adventures or Carolina Beach Scuba.

The Condor

Among the most interesting dive sites at Kure Beach is North Carolina’s First Heritage Dive Site – the Condor. The Civil War blockade runner, which ran aground on her maiden voyage to Wilmington more than 150 years ago, is one of the best-preserved shipwrecks on the North Carolina coast and can be explored just off the southern tip of Kure Beach at Fort Fisher. One of the passengers aboard the Condor was Rose O’Neal Greenhow, a famous Confederate spy returning to the states. Because she was concerned about being captured by the Union, Greenhow demanded to be sent ashore in a small lifeboat after the ship ran aground. She drowned in the surf, allegedly with gold sewn into her garment meant for the Confederacy. From its brief history to a ship that remains mostly intact today, the Condor has quite a story to tell.

Dive slates provide a self-guided tour from May 1 to Nov. 1 and help divers interpret what they are seeing. Divers can take a charter from the Carolina Beach Inlet to the Condor or kayak to the site. There are also mooring lines at the site for boats and kayaks. Visitors can learn about the Condor’s history on dry land by viewing artifacts housed at Fort Fisher State Historic Site’s Visitors Center or see a replica of the engine room in one of the tanks at the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher

Yoga and Aquarium Tours

Find your inner Zen under the sea at the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher. The aquarium hosts yoga classes throughout the year that are led by certified instructors, where yogis can rejuvenate themselves in an aquatic setting. Behind-the-scenes tours and programs also offer a way to learn more about the animals and their care.