With a convenient location nearby the town of Beaufort and the beaches that make up the Crystal Coast, including Atlantic Beach, Pine Knoll Shores and Emerald Isle, Morehead City offers a relaxing coastal lifestyle. Situated an easy drive away from New Bern, Havelock and MCAS Cherry Point, as well as Jacksonville and Camp Lejeune, Morehead City includes a thriving port area, a waterfront commercial district and numerous opportunities for boating, fishing and kayaking.
First incorporated in 1860, Morehead City is home to approximately 9,700 residents. Some of the major employers in the area include the Port of Morehead City; home to several recovery vessels operated by SpaceX, light commercial fishing, Carteret General Hospital, Carteret County Public Schools, the service and tourism industries.
People appreciate Morehead City for the wide, sandy beaches located across Bogue Sound, the yacht clubs, boat launches and marinas, Fort Macon State Park and the vast nature preserves that are close by, including Cape Lookout National Seashore and the Rachel Carson Preserve. As the main part of town is set on a peninsula and nearly surrounded by water, with the Newport River to the north and east, and Bogue Sound to the south, Morehead City real estate includes large downtown properties with water views and custom homes with private docks, as well as golf course properties, starter homes, vacation rentals, historic residences and cottages, in walking distance to waterfront shopping and dining.
Things to Do in Morehead City
Going to the beach is nearly always an option in Morehead City, as is a visit to the historic town of Beaufort or the nearby North Carolina Aquarium at Pine Knoll Shores. A trip to the Cape Lookout National Seashore is also a must, as it consists of a number of deserted barrier islands that are only accessible by boat or through a local ferry service. The Cape Lookout National Seashore includes Shackleford Banks, home to wild horses, gray foxes, otters and a variety of birds, South Core Banks, where the iconic Cape Lookout lighthouse is found, North Core Banks, and Portsmouth Island, site of a former port that is now a ghost town with several intact buildings.
With so much water around, sports such as surfing, swimming, kayaking and diving are popular in Morehead City and the surrounding areas, though fishing takes center stage, as the Gulf Stream is located nearby and there are many charter fishing vessels available. A major fishing tournament, the Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament, has been held out of Morehead City since 1957. It features a large cash prize and is well-known among sport fishermen across the East Coast.
Morehead City also hosts the North Carolina Seafood Festival and Bald is Beautiful convention. In recent years, it has become a popular destination for SCUBA diving, as there is a sunken German U-boat located offshore, along with many other historic wrecks.
If that were not enough, there are a number of institutions of higher learning in Morehead City, including Carteret Community College, UNC-Chapel Hill Institute of Marine Sciences and the NCSU Center for Marine Sciences and Technology. A future interstate is planned to provide a faster connection to Raleigh-Durham, a factor that could result in substantial growth for the area.
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