Glassy waters serve as a tranquil training ground for first-time paddlers, who develop graceful strokes and effective directional paddling during lessons before charting their own marine pathways through the Outer Banks. Lessons start with an overview of terminology and paddleboard anatomy. After successfully locating the epoxy heart and carbon fiber arteries of the board, students take to the beach for practice and an overview of safety protocols, such as what to do if your arm grazes a patch of icky seaweed. Once the 1.5-hour lesson has ended and students feel confident in their abilities, they may paddle their epoxy flotillas through aquatic pastures lined with lush trees for two additional hours. As the shop is located on a calm bay, paddlers need not fret about circumnavigating the ocean’s frothy swells or encountering joust-happy swordfish.
Overlooking the Pamlico Sound, Hatteras Watersports Salvo gives Outer Banks visitors an opportunity to explore the area from a new perspective. A fleet of eight Yamaha Waverunner jet skis sits at the ready, beckoning guests who want to feel the thrill of a 110-horsepower engine propelling them across the water. Alternately, a Hobie Wave catamaran eschews engines in favor of wind power, allowing as many as four adults or one homesick walrus to effortlessly sail out toward the horizon. For a completely different experience altogether, Hatteras Watersports Salvo also rents kayaks to individuals looking to explore nearby marshes and wetlands while keeping their eyes peeled for the area's abundant wildlife. Those looking to walk the waves can rent a standup paddleboard and cruise the shorelines while basking in sunshine. Hatteras Watersports Salvo's sprawling lawn keeps groups occupied before or after aquatic outings with a picnic area, a volleyball court, and even hot showers for rinsing off at the end of the day.
Extreme Laser Tag sets the stage for space-age combat with its labyrinth of smoky corridors, ramps, and neon-lit walls. Equipped with Nexus Generation laser-tag technology, the arena can host up to 60 vested combatants as they split into teams and vie for points by scoring chest shots on their opponents.
Large plasma monitors outside the arena display the hectic battles in real time, with beam-by-beam battle stats showing who is the scoring leader and who has been melted into plasmic goo. The facility frequently accommodates birthday parties, large corporate gatherings, and fundraiser groups; everyday customers and private partiers often join in battlefield alliances, exacting laser-powered revenge on bosses and double-crossing imaginary friends.
The IKO-certified instructors at Kite Club Hatteras help their pupils grab hold of kites and soar above the sky-blue waters of The Outer Banks. Using the ocean as their classroom and the back of a sea turtle as their chalkboard, the boarding profs teach students how to launch, land, and master complex techniques during three levels of instruction. Aside from helping pupils gain their IKO certification, they also lead multiday events, during which kiteboarders can relax in beach houses and take lessons on becoming independent riders.
Helmed by kiteboarding pioneers Trip Forman and Matt Nuzzo and lauded by Men’s Journal as one of the best sports camps in America, Real Watersports' guides train and outfit extreme water recreationists of all skill levels. Wrangle waves during two-hour lessons in surfing, standup paddleboarding, or kiteboarding, a chimerical extreme water sport that combines a small board with a large, controllable kite to propel riders over the waves and into the air. No matter which method of propulsion you use, Real’s expert guides will teach you how to ride, chop through, or fly over the waves in private terrain set aside for Real by an exclusive permit from the National Parks Service, freeing athletes from the glare of beachcombers or the cat calls of foul-mouthed pelicans.
Skydive OBX's experienced instructors escort adrenaline seekers on exhilarating tandem jumps over the Outer Banks' beautiful beach scenery. After a brief demonstration explaining how jumpers should behave midair, brave cloud cutters climb aboard the compact Cessna 182 plane that carries them 9,000 feet into the atmosphere. Once planes have navigated to the sky's jumping sweet spot, passengers leap from the craft and freefall for 30 intense seconds before the instructor pulls the parachute. Breathtaking views of Roanoke Island and the Atlantic Ocean surround jumpers as they soar gracefully toward the ground and avoid awkward chats with small-minded birds. A designated viewing area gives family and friends a place to photograph their loved ones' flying feats, or gives jumpers a place to aim their Nerf darts while gliding.