Craft Beer & Breweries

Whether you’re a traveling craft beer aficionado or a beer-loving vacationer with a taste for good suds, Wilmington and our Island beaches have gained notoriety as one of the country’s fastest-growing craft beer hot spots.

Complementing our unique breweries are festivals and events and several beer-carrying bottleshops—strategically located throughout the city on the Wilmington Ale Trail—for easy access to some of the world’s finest beers and wines. Chances are you'll encounter one of our food trucks serving delicious on-the-go eats while on your brewery adventure.

So if you’re looking for a beer-based getaway, why not book it at the coast? Here are just a few of our top hops spots in the brewing community.

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Wilmington Ale Trail

Explore Wilmington's 16 breweries on a self-guided brewery tasting tour along the Wilmington Ale Trail. Download the guided map with brewery information, signature and seasonal brews and more here. For the craft beer aficionado, the Wilmington Ale Trail Mobile Passport unlocks perks, experiences and vouchers at area breweries, bottleshops and beer hot spots. Or, cruise along on the Port City Brew Bus, sip and sample at area breweries, go behind-the-scenes and learn about the brewing process. Get the inside scoop on Wilmington's craft beer scene and discover what's hoppin' in Carolina Beach and Wrightsville Beach

News & Accolades

Named one of "America's Beeriest Beach Towns" and listed among the top five places to experience a "beery, beachside getaway" by CraftBeer.com, it's safe to say the brewery scene is hoppin' and continues to grow in Wilmington and beaches. New Anthem Beer Project recently opened its second location in the up-and-coming South Front District and hosts weekend food trucks and live music. Mad Mole Brewing won the award of America's Favorite Solar-Powered Microbrewery in competition with breweries from across the nation. Stay up-to-date on what's brewing in Wilmington's craft beer scene and discover news and accolades here.

Bottleshops

Area bottleshops provide a one-stop shop for sampling craft beer options in Wilmington and beaches alongside a wealth of take-home options, live music, food trucks and events. From historic downtown to island beaches, bottleshops are easy to come by with some offering over 400 craft beers from around the world. Discover area bottleshops and craft beer hot spots.

Festivals & Events

Year-round, Wilmington and beaches host a number of craft beer-centric events. In October, the Lighthouse Beer and Wine Festival kicks off with the Voracious Rare Beer Festival on the Battleship NORTH CAROLINA and followed the next day by a riverside festival including live music, 300+ beers and 100+ wines. Sip and stroll during the Fall and Winter Wilmington Wine and Beer Walk stopping off at bars, nightclubs and eateries on this self-guided tour of historic downtown Wilmington. In the spring, prost on the coast at Marchtoberfest Wilmington NC'S Beer Festival and enjoy craft beer and exquisite scenery at Cape Fear Craft & Cuisine at Airlie Gardens pairing area restaurants with breweries offering small plates and samples. This is just a tasting of craft beer events, browse a full listing of here.