Located in an ideal spot overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway and Bogue Sound, the historic waterfront of Swansboro is perfect for unwinding and exploring. Known as “the friendly city by the sea,” Swansboro has a unique blend of shopping, dining, historic sites, and beautiful natural resources. Time can slow down as much as you want as you stroll the streets along the water’s edge against a backdrop of eclectic boutiques and eateries set inside restored historic buildings. During the summer, the line forming outside Yana’s Ye Olde Restaurant will get your attention, as diners wait their turn to enjoy made-to-order fruit fritters and shrimp omelets for breakfast or, for lunch, onion rings and a burger that requires two hands. The 1950’s Elvis memorabilia, as well as the friendly atmosphere, also make this one a hit. Across the street, shop for unique souvenirs inside architecturally interesting buildings with time-worn creaky floors and huge windows. From handmade creations by local artists and home decor at shops like Salt Marsh Cottage to the ultimate sweet experience at Candy Edventure, Swansboro’s boutiques and shops are a browser’s delight. At Pogies, outdoor enthusiasts will find all kinds of coastal gear from baits to attire that will leave them prepared for their next adventure.
Dini’s Martinis and Desserts
Dini’s Martinis and Desserts is a upscale dessert and martini bar. Located along the Swansboro waterfront, Dini’s Martinis and Desserts is a popular date night destination and local meeting...
Pogie’s Fishing Center
A great resource for the outdoor enthusiast and coastal anglers offering a wide variety of guided and unguided trips exploring Swansboro’s pristine waters along the White Oak River and Intra Coastal...
Get off the beaten path and experience the best kept natural secret on the Crystal Coast. Our 23 ft. BayRider Skiff can take you comfortably through the winding backwaters of the Crystal Coast –...
History buffs will enjoy strolling the waterfront boardwalk that leads to Bicentennial Park, where the walkway reaches out to a point surrounded by the White Oak River and Swansboro harbor. Besides getting you closer to the water views, the park also features a statue of one of Swansboro’s famous sons, Captain Otway Burns, who was born here in 1775. His life as an American privateer during the War of 1812 was quite adventurous, before later becoming a North Carolina Senator.
If you’re looking for fun in the great outdoors, take a boat ride with Marsh Cruises aboard a 23-foot Bay Rider skiff and stop along a sandbar to go shelling. Scenic cruises depart from Swansboro, taking passengers on two-hour excursions through the shallow winding backwaters of Swansboro and Emerald Isle on ecological, shelling, photography and sunset cruises. Scenic cruises include the unspoiled habitat of Bear Island and opportunities to see dolphins and a variety of wildlife and birds. Outdoor fun continues at Hammocks Beach State Park, which is just a short drive from Swansboro’s historic district. Start at the mainland Welcome Center with interpretive exhibits and picnic areas, and from there, take a ferry shuttle to Bear Island, the true jewel of the park. The three-mile-long island remains undeveloped and is a paradise for shelling, fishing, primitive camping or just enjoying a day at the beach. The park also has three marked canoe trails and seasonal concessions.
After a day of fun on the water, Swansboro has plenty of spots to enjoy a meal. The Boro Restaurant and Bar offers weekly live music and the “Boro Steakburger” to go along with a waterfront view and outdoor patio seating. Many choose Saltwater Grill for its fabulous views, but soon discover the food is just as spectacular. The carefully crafted menu is based on the freshest available fare and is served on waterfront patios and decks. Just blocks away, Riverside Steak & Seafood offers a casual, fine-dining experience inside a two-story, historic home that’s perfect for “date night” or “a girl’s night out.” The menu is built around the freshest North Carolina seafood and hand-cut aged beef. Insiders love the shrimp ‘n grits and sweet potato muffins.
Because the waterfront is such an important part of the town’s history, Swansboro’s heritage as the “friendly city by the sea” is highlighted throughout the year as it's downtown streets come alive with annual events. The Swansboro Mullet Festival of NC, held each November, is a two-day festival that pays tribute to the area’s coastal culture and celebrates all things mullet. If you love seafood, this is the place to sample all kinds. The fun continues in the Spring when the Arts by the Sea Festival is held annually on the second Saturday of June. The juried fine craft show attracts the finest art and handmade crafts, including pottery, jewelry, paintings, carvings, photography, and sculpture. It’s a perfect time to sample delicious festival foods and to shop the booths lining the streets for souvenirs and gifts to share.