Carolina Shore - Ocean, Seafood, History & More!

Discussion in 'Travel Stories' started by giradman, Oct 29, 2013.

  1. giradman

    giradman
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    Well, I've been posting in my NC mountain thread for a while, which I might just expand to include the Virginia & West Virginia mountains. BUT, the other area of the mid-Atlantic region the we visit often is along the shorelines of Virginia, North & South Carolina, and into Georgia - for us the spring & fall are the best times of the year - school is in session, crowds are less, and most importantly the hot & humid summer months can be avoided. SO, will be posting in this thread both recent & past visits, and hopefully interest others who may be 'passing by' to check out some of these towns, cities, and beaches. Dave :)
     
    #1 giradman, Oct 29, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  2. giradman

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    Wrightsville Beach - Susan & I are on a short trip to the Wilmington, NC area (about a 4 hour drive from home virtually all on I-40 which ends in Wilmington. This is a popular barrier coastal island just over 2 miles of beautiful beach - plenty of excellent restaurants in the area plus the attractions of Wilmington and the surrounding environs.

    We usually stay at the Holiday Inn & Susan likes an oceanfront room - so, first pic below our 6th floor room overlooking the outdoor pool w/ the Atlantic Ocean in the background (wish that I could add the fresh breeze & the ocean's sound). Second pic (top right) showing Johnnie Mercer's Pier - this is now a concrete (and hopefully storm proof) structure replaced in 1996 after the old wooden one was demolished by Hurricane Fran.

    The island is small but quaint - no pretensions - actually there are several islands that comprise the 'town' w/ intervening wetlands and marshes - the opposite side of the hotel looks out upon these pastel & nautically decorated houses and the wetlands. The lower two pics of several houses (the blue one is probably one of my favorites on the island - lagoons and water inlets w/ boats abound.

    P.S. Using my iPad, a BT keyboard, & a new photo app from Photoshop (eliminated the Wrightsville Beach water tower from the top of the 'blue' house) - usually wait until I'm home on my laptop but will give it a try! More to come - Dave :)

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    #2 giradman, Oct 29, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2013
  3. skimonkey

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    What lovely pics you have giradman!! Love the nautical fashion of those homes in the two pictures. You are very fortunate to have such beautiful beaches so close to home!
     
  4. giradman

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    For those who might be interested and missed my comment on eliminating the 'water tower' from the pic of one of my favorite houses on Wrightsville Beach, below is the pic that I took (left) and the one 'touched up' (right) using the Adobe iPad app called Photoshop Touch - I was actually somewhat surprised by the depth of features in this tablet program - does much more and this is just my first experience - not only crops & resizes but adds many features seen in imaging editing apps on standard computers - not free but quite inexpensive - Dave :)

    P.S. I took 3-4 pics of this house but liked the one w/ the tower best because of the trees, BUT just inserted a more 'frontal' third one (water tower is 'out of the image' in that position) - :D


    WVBeachHouse2.JPG photo.JPG WVB_House4.JPG
     
    #4 giradman, Nov 2, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  5. giradman

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    Wrightsville Beach (continued):

    The Atlantic Ocean is usually rather 'gentle' off this barrier island, but on our last full day, the waves did pick up a little as seen in the top (left) pic below - actually, this is a popular surfing spot and a half dozen surfer dudes in wet suits were out trying these modest waves (just nothing like those images of the huge waves on the West coast, in Hawaii, or in other parts of the world) - like skiing in North Carolina, surfing is also a pale comparison to other choices - ;)

    Another more quaint smaller house w/ palms in front (top right) - on our first full day we did an afternoon 'small' boat ride w/ a marine biologist (use to work for the Army Corps of Engineers) - he took us from the western end of the island to Masonboro Inlet to view the island of the same name which is a nature preserve, i.e. no development but can be visited by boat - amazing commentary from this guy (Susan & I were the only ones on the boat) about what was in the water, on the land, and flying overhead - lower left view of the salt marsh inlet w/ mainly gulls and one cormorant (the darker bird) - dozens of pelicans (the brown variety) flew overhead and I leaned a lot more about this bird from the guide - could be another post! And just a last image showing yet another fabulous house on the way back from this boat ride! Hope all enjoy - Dave :)

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    NatureBoat1.JPG NatureBoat2.JPG
     
  6. giradman

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    Airlie Gardens - Flora & Fauna - Part 1

    Along the Carolina & Georgia Coast are many 'gardens' to visit - Airlie Gardens is in Wilmington, NC near Wrightsville Beach - located on the salt marsh inlets w/ plenty of old live oaks & flowering plants - spring would be the best season to visit when the azaleas are in bloom.

    Below just a few pics - top ones show the famous Airlie Oak - story HERE - started as an acorn in the mid-1500s before the founding of the 'Lost Colony' on Roanoke Island, NC (think Walter Raleigh & Elizabeth I) in the 1580s - trunk is over 21 ft in circumference - the Spanish moss is just magnificent - plenty of other live oaks are on the property - for those who may not know, 'live oaks' keep their leaves and the branches grow horizontally - these were prized trees for lumber, especially for ship building.

    At the bottom, some chrysanthemums which were plentiful & on a deck onto the salt marsh, a dead tree w/ an Osprey nest at the very top - Dave :)

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    Chrysanthemums2.JPG Airlie_Osprey.JPG
     
  7. giradman

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    Airlie Gardens - Part 2

    The gardens also have a lot of wildlife, such as the Osprey nest shown in the previous post. Shore birds abound - saw plenty of great egrets & a Blue Heron (see pic below of egrets in a live oak tree hanging over a pond); couple pics of yellow belly slider turtles which are quite common on the coast - love to sun themselves and often hold up a leg in the air. Finally, a large male swan was close to the walking path - started to 'honk' when I got too close - :D

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    Airlie_Turtles2a.jpg Airlie_Swan.JPG
     
  8. suenc

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    I miss Wrightsville Beach already, and it's only been a week. :eek: Great photos!
     
  9. giradman

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    Kiawah Island, South Carolina - we are now on the island (for 3 nights this time); then 2 nights in Charleston @ the Charleston Place - below is a quote from another forum about our stay on Kiawah (just 18 months or so ago, thus late 2012) - pretty much staying in the same lagoon area (different condo) - pics are all the same. The only DRASTIC change is that fabulous grocery/gourmet store has been taken over by Harris Teeter, so Susan was let down - that's where she does our regular shopping @ home; also, putting some posts in the eating thread. Dave :)

     
  10. leelai

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    What a wonderful area to wind down and relax! It's really looks like my sort of place!

    That lagoon looks so beautiful and peaceful and with so much to explore and the wild life there too, I'd love to visit!

    Shame about that Store! I just have to go eat now, after reading your food post and now this I'm quite ravenous! ;)
     

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