Let’s be honest, we don’t come to the beach just for the surf and sand. Restaurants and their appetizing offerings play a role in the vacation, too. One of the best ways to enjoy your summer vacation is dining at a spot where the scenery is as fine as what’s on the plate. There are dozens of places to enjoy dining outdoors on the Outer Banks. You will be able to have some of the best views and most tranquil dining at numerous restaurants located from Corolla to Roanoke Island. We have made it easy for you with our roundup of the best outdoor dining on the Outer Banks. Take a look and make sure you try a few out during your next venture to the Outer Banks!
1. Miller’s Waterfront Restaurant, Nags Head
One of the few soundfront restaurants on the beach, Miller’s serves lunch and dinner daily, which allows you ample time to enjoy the view. They can handle families and large parties and have a varied menu with local seafood, steaks, chicken and creative salads and pastas. The kitchen prepares specials every day. They really do have one of the best sunset views. Have fun watching windsurfers and kiteboarders during the day while enjoying lunch on their newly-shaded deck. Or relax on the deck and catch live music Tuesday-Friday during peak season and a cocktail in the evening. Miller’s Waterfront Restaurant
2. Ocean Boulevard, Kitty Hawk
Ocean Boulevard is a casual yet upscale restaurant, which means you can enjoy a special evening out in the comfort of your sandals. They are, after all, just steps away from the ocean. Ocean Boulevard’s culinary team serves an American bistro-style menu and has been praised in Southern Living magazine as well as The Washington Post. The menu changes seasonally but always includes lots of beautiful preparations of local seafood, regional poultry and meats, nightly chef specials and decadent desserts. They have a comprehensive wine list and a full bar with their own martini menu. Come here for live entertainment on Friday nights after dinner. Their oceanside patio is one of many unique features; it’s an enjoyable hangout during the summer and you can often catch some live music during the week. Ocean Boulevard is open nightly for dinner year round. Reservations are suggested. Ocean Boulevard
3. Sunset Bar & Grill, Duck
Sunset Grille and Raw Bar of Duck, North Carolina brings you the finest in fresh local seafood, steaks, pastas, and more with a Caribbean flair. Our award winning chefs are always working hard to prepare the finest dishes for our customers.
Sunset Grille is located on the best waterfront property on the Outer Banks in the village of Duck. We are a total entertainment destination where families are welcome to enjoy our wide array of activities including breakfast, lunch, and dinner served daily as well as outdoor waterfront deck dining areas, 3 tiki bars, sushi bar, raw bar of course, and large indoor dining areas. All in a true Caribbean setting. Sit among the palm trees sipping your tropical libation from our award winning specialty drink menu. Or go and rent a waverunner from our Watersports operation on the gazebo. Sunset Bar & Grill in Duck
4. Mulligan’s Raw Bar & Grill, Nags Head
Located at milepost 13 in Nags Head across from Jockey’s Ridge State Park, we have unbelievable views from our second floor deck of the Atlantic Ocean and the historic Nags Head cottages. As a matter of fact, we don’t believe that you can truly unwind until you’ve ordered an Orange Crush on the deck at Mulligan’s!
Take a look at our menu or daily specials page to see what local seafood we are getting in today and know that we strive to buy as much of our products as locally as possible—local seafood, local produce, and locally butchered meats. We strive to bring only the freshest local food to your table, from hand-cut beach fries to oysters straight from the Pamlico Sound. We give a whole new meaning to Southern Coastal cuisine.
So come hang out where the locals are… at Mulligan’s Raw Bar & Grille! Mulligan’s Raw Bar & Grill
5. The Roadside Bar & Grill, Duck
The Roadside Bar and Grill has been serving top notch meals and hand crafted cocktails since 1995. We are located in the heart of Duck in one of the village’s original cottages. We hope to see you soon! The Roadside Bar & Grill
6. Hurricane Mo’s Beachside Bar & Grill, Kitty Hawk
Hurricane Mo’s is just steps from the ocean and has an intimate, beachy atmosphere. On the menu you’ll find fresh seafood, steaks, chicken, pasta and sandwiches. Daily specials are offered at lunch and dinner. Kids will be happy with the selections on their children’s menu. They have a full bar and happy hour specials from 3 to 5 p.m., including 15-cent shrimp, 35-cent wings and $1 tacos. Hurricane Mo’s is open year round for lunch and dinner, and you can get take-out if you prefer. They offer free WiFi for customers to use. Check them out if you’re looking for fun. If you are after fun and sun, have a drink and bite to eat on their new outdoor covered deck overlooking the ocean. Hurricane Mo’s Beachside Bar & Grill
7. Fish Heads Bar & Grill on the Outer Banks Fishing Pier, South Nags Head
Geared up for another season, Outer Banks Pier has open-deck dining! A roof over the deck just to the side of the pier house shades bar-style seating all around the edge and tables in the center. They serve hamburgers, fries, steamed shrimp and veggies, fish tacos (yum!) and more. Wine and beer are available, and they also have some breakfast sandwiches for the early birds and anglers. They’re open every day, with a daily happy hour from 4-6 p.m., and have live entertainment every night during the summer. Fish Head Bar and Grill
8. Rundown Cafe, Kitty Hawk
Rundown Cafe serves island cuisine in a casual atmosphere. The food is a fusion of Pacific Rim and Caribbean flavors, and they have a substantial menu of vegetarian options. Upstairs you’ll find an authentic surf bar with a brand new, super large, ocean view deck where you’ll find live music in season. This is a great family-friendly restaurant since the menu is very affordable and there are lots of choices for kids. Rundown serves lunch and dinner seven days a week in the summer. You can also order take-out here. They are closed from the end of November until March 1. Rundown Cafe
9. John’s Drive In, Kitty Hawk
Classic drive-in shack (open May-October) specializing in thick milkshakes & fried fish sandwiches. Located on the beach road in Kitty Hawk around MP 4, this amazingly yummy restaurant is a Outer Banks favorite! You order at the window and your food is served in to-go containers but they have outdoor picnic tables for your enjoyment. You’ve gotta try the Dolphin Boat! Johns Drive In
10. South Beach Grill, Nags Head
With a truly affordable menu consisting of local seafood, lots of signature salads, sandwiches, lettuce wraps, Caribbean-inspired entrees, steaks and terrific homemade desserts, South Beach Grille is a great place to eat on the beach. Deck-top dining is available, with views of both the ocean and the sound, and you can enjoy a smoothie or a specialty drink from their full bar. Like wings? Then stop in on Friday and get wings in seven flavors for 35 cents each, then wash them down with the $2.75 domestic beer special of the day. You can also stop in daily for their $2 happy hour menu from 3-6 p.m. South Beach has a good kids’ selection and offers extensive gluten-free choices and lots of options for vegetarians too. Your meal is prepared fresh to order; if you have any special dietary needs please inform your server. South Beach Grille is open Monday through Saturday during the summer and are closed on Sundays. South Beach Grill
10. Mike Dianna’s Grill Room, Corolla
Mike Dianna’s Grill Room has become a legendary Outer Banks restaurant. Fine dining with a casual atmosphere, it is most well known for its excellently prepared meats — offering all-natural and USDA Prime beef, pork, chicken and veal — cooked over a hardwood grill. The fresh, local seafood is treated just as beautifully, and there are daily pasta specials. The distinctive wine selection has won Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence for the past nine years. They have an outdoor deck and bar with live music seven days a week in season. From Memorial Day through Labor Day they serve lunch outside on the deck daily, starting at noon. The restaurant opens for dinner at 5 p.m.; reservations are recommended. Most nights they serve beverages until midnight. They are kid friendly and offer a kids’ menu. Mike Dianna’s Grill Room can accommodate rehearsal dinners, small intimate weddings and other family gatherings. Mike Dianna’s Grill Room
11. Bonzer Shack, Kill Devil Hills
Get ready to kick back and relax at the Bonzer Shack! With their creative take on Southern comfort food, there’s always something on the menu that’s sure to tempt you, whether it’s their variety of soups and sandwiches, fresh seafood specials and juicy burgers or their mouthwatering prime rib. Local favorites also include delicious apps like their Hippie Dip and wings roasted in-house daily, plus their excellent specialty cocktails. The Shack also features the only slider menu on the beach and draws crowds every Wednesday during the summer for their $2 Slider Night. While the weather’s warm you can even stop by on Fridays for live entertainment, or enjoy their spacious yard any night (weather permitting) for outdoor dining, ping pong and cornhole fun. The Shack is open for lunch and dinner year round and serves up a special Bonzer Brunch on Sundays in season. Bonzer Shack
13. Arts Place, Kitty Hawk
Art’s Place is a local’s favorite for a delicious cheeseburger or a filling breakfast in a laid back atmosphere. They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and they offer live music throughout the week! Art’s place is located in Kitty Hawk around Milepost 3 on the beach road. So if you’re in the mood for some good ol’ American cuisine – stop in to Art’s place on your next OBX vacation! Arts Place
13. Full Moon & Cafe on Roanoke Island, Manteo
Full Moon Cafe has been a favorite dining destination on the Outer Banks since 1995. The location on a busy corner in the heart of downtown Manteo gives the restaurant a lively, happening feel. Dine outside under shady umbrellas or take a seat by a window indoors; either choice offers a great view of the activities in downtown Manteo. The atmosphere here is fun, un-stuffy and relaxed, with friendly service.
Full Moon’s food is diverse, delicious and incredibly fresh. The owners have high standards for freshness, flavor and presentation. They’re known for their perfectly prepared Angus steaks and fresh, local seafood, but the menu includes a surprising range of fare for everyone from seafood lovers to meat eaters to vegetarians to kids. Full Moon Cafe
The new Full Moon Brewery is the only place in downtown Manteo to taste flavorful, hand-crafted brews and watch the ancient art of brewing. The wine list is extensive, with more than 70 bottles offered.
The café is open for lunch and dinner seven days a week in-season. Call for off-season hours. Dinner reservations are accepted.
14. Slice Pizzeria, Kill Devil Hills
Slice Pizzeria joined the Outer Banks community in June 2008. They offer delicious NY style and Chicago style pizza baked in one of their stone ovens. Slice prides itself in using only the freshest ingredients and you will taste the difference in their homemade sauces and pizza dough. Their newly added outdoor patio offers plenty of seating for large groups and small! Pizza, calzones, pastas, subs, salads, appetizers, desserts and more! Slice Pizzeria
15. The Oceanfront Grill, Corolla
The Oceanfront Grille at Corolla Light is the only oceanfront restaurant on the Currituck Outer Banks.
The menu includes mixed grill, seafood, and children’s options. Join us on our outdoor deck to try our signature crabcakes.