Oceanfront Hotel Close to Historic Attractions
The tallest lighthouse in the United States is situated on Cape Hatteras, one of many barrier islands that make up the Outer Banks off the country’s southeastern coast. Right around this lighthouse, you can find the spot where the Wright brothers took flight for the first time, in Kill Devil Hills (not in nearby Kitty Hawk, contrary to what's taught in textbooks). And today, the islands on the Outer Banks are popular for their history as well as their temperate climate and wide-open beaches. The Ramada Plaza Nags Head Beach sits right on the North Carolina oceanfront, close to all of these islands.
The beach is the center of the activity here, too. You can spend a day just lounging on the Ramada's expansive beach, or experience it on top of a bicycle or surfboard rented from a shop nearby. When not swimming in the Atlantic, you can take advantage of the hotel's pool.
You can get a nice view of the beach from Peppercorns, the onsite restaurant, which serves up seafood, sandwiches, and sweeping panoramas of the beach. Stop at the lounge here to catch live music on Friday nights and karaoke on Saturdays. Each of the hotel's guest rooms features beach-inspired decor and offers striking views of the city, dunes, or ocean as well.
North Carolina's Outer Banks: Wright Brothers Flight Monuments and Tall Sand Dunes
The Ramada Plaza is located in Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina, about a mile north of the Wright Brothers National Memorial, a 60-foot granite obelisk topped by a shining marine beacon that commemorates the first human-powered aviation. The memorial also includes wind-tunnel reproductions, replicas of the brothers' early gliders, memorabilia, and the pinch of Tinker Bell's pixie dust that made the flight possible.
A couple miles south of the hotel, you can find some of the tallest natural sand dunes on the East Coast at Jockey’s Ridge State Park. The mounds of constantly shifting sand would fill 6 million dump-truck beds. Combative winds from the northeast and southwest keep the dunes from blowing away.
Further south, Cape Hatteras National Seashore has earned the nickname “Graveyard of the Atlantic” for the many ships that have wrecked here during storms on its dangerous shoals. There's abundant wildlife here, though, including nesting sea turtles, and the surfing is considered some of the best on the East Coast.
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