Onslow County Tourism April 2018 itin #3 LB

Welcome to Onslow County, a caring community steeped in military history and tradition. Regardless of the season, it is always a good time to visit and discover the many ways to find your country at the beautiful coast of North Carolina.

Day One
Country Cruising

Huffman Vineyards, Richlands, N.C.
Photo: Onslow County Tourism
Huffman Vineyards, Richlands, N.C.

Start off an afternoon with a stop at the Onslow County Museum. Located in the heart of Richlands, the state-of-the-art facility showcases Onslow County’s special moments in history and provides a 4,000-year overview of the land from prehistoric times to present day.

Head up the road on Highway 258 toward Kinston, and stop at one of the county’s newest treasures, Huffman Vineyards at Mirey Creek. Participate in a wine tasting from more than 21 varieties — sweet, semi-sweet or dry. Visitors also enjoy the gift shop and hand-painted murals found throughout the winery.

From the winery, cruise down the country road to Mike’s Farm. Enjoy a true family-style dinner with some of the best home cooking in eastern North Carolina. Mike’s Farm is known for its hayrides, educational programs, petting zoo, seasonal produce and special events, like Festival of Lights. The farm also has a gift shop and a phenomenal bakery.

Day Two
Swansboro Shopping Spree

Swansboro, N.C.
Photo: Onslow County Tourism
Swansboro, N.C.

Visit historic downtown Swansboro and shop at a variety of gift shops at over 40 unique locations. Located right on the waterfront, Swansboro is a beautiful place to spend several hours.

Have breakfast at Yana’s Ye Olde Drug Store Restaurant, where locals and visitors are known to wait an hour to sample famous homemade fruit fritters in the morning. For lunch and dinner, there are several unique restaurants – Saltwater Grill, Church Street Deli, White Oak River BistroIcehouse Waterfront Restaurant and Boro Café & Bakery.

Between April and October, head to Hammocks Beach State Park and enjoy a 40-minute round trip ferry ride to Bear Island for a peaceful walk along the white sandy beaches and some shelling. Or, check out Lady Swan Boat Tours in Swansboro for a sunset cruise or a history tour on the water.

Day Three
Lejeune Memorial Gardens, Downtown Jacksonville & North Topsail Beach

9/11 Memorial at Lejeune Memorial Gardens, Jacksonville, N.C. Onslow County
Photo: Onslow County Tourism
9/11 Memorial, Lejeune Memorial Gardens, Jacksonville, N.C.

Jacksonville is home to Camp Lejeune, a U.S. Marine Corps base, and is steeped in military history. Lejeune Memorial Gardens is a gorgeous, yet quiet and retrospective location nestled in the North Carolina pines, with azaleas. The Beirut Memorial is dedicated to those who lost their lives in 1983 in Beirut on a peacekeeping mission. The 9/11 Memorial is a piece of the Twin Towers and was brought to Jacksonville to thank Marines for their service. The Vietnam Memorial is only one of two in the United States that lists the names of every person lost. The newest monument is the Montford Point Marines Memorial that honors African American Marines that served the country during World War II.

When leaving the memorials, groups will see the Freedom Fountain, dedicated to active-duty personnel. Stop by Jacksonville/Onslow Council for the Arts and then enjoy lunch at Barley Wine Cafe.

In the afternoon, head over to North Topsail Beach and stop along the African American Heritage Trail to see Ocean City Beach, one of the first coastal communities where African Americans could enjoy living.

For a fresh seafood lunch or dinner, stop by The Marina Café, located on the riverfront in Jacksonville. If groups visit on a Friday night, they can take a river cruise after the meal.  

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Onslow County Tourism
910-347-3141
OnlyinOnslow.com