Welcome to Wrightsville
Wrightsville Beach has become my happy place. After years of searching, my family bought a house in this cute little beach town when I was in high school. Since then, I have spent summers, holidays, and quarantine at Wrightsville. It has become my home, my escape, and my sanctuary.
Even though I don’t live at Wrightsville full time, I would like to think I have the perspective of a “local.” In and out of season, my family and I have found some gems I have aggregated to make a complete guide to WB.
Whether it is December or July, it is hard to drive around Wrightsville Beach without almost hitting someone walking or running. Part of what makes everyone seem so happy at Wrightsville is the Vitamin D intake -- everyone wants to be outside all the time! One of the best walking places off the actual beach is the WB Loop. With scenic views of the sound, beautiful bridges, and nice stops for coffee along the way, this 2.6 mile loop is perfect for a morning walk or afternoon run. My family jokes that we should start a tally of how many times we all go around the loop -- I’m pretty sure we have broken the record.
The WB Park is right in the center of the loop. There is a tiny history museum, grassy fields, a baseball field, basketball courts, and two separate playsets. Don’t miss the hidden garden at the point of the loop with a swinging bench -- it’s the perfect stop if you need a break from the heat.
The Workshop has the best dirty chai lattes and an amazing coconut water cold brew. The owner is a diver and the whole cafe is filled with megalodon sharks’ teeth she has found over the years.
Next is SUNdays. Located above one of our favorite surf shops on the south end of the island, this cafe is a great study spot. Awesome, local artwork hangs on the walls and the view of the ocean just across the street is to die for -- especially when you need to spend hours grinding on some work.
DAY TIME EATS.
The winner takes all for this category is Adapt. I don't even want to know how much my sisters and I have spent at this fine establishment. Located in the historic Robert’s Grocery, just a walk down from our house, Adapt’s acai bowls, avo toast, poke, and smoothies will not disappoint. They source their produce locally and support local efforts to compost, reduce trash, and better the WB community overall.
Wrightsville Beach Brewery is a new favorite of mine. They have great food, brews, and an incredible outdoor beer garden. Every week, they post different events ranging from live music to yoga. It is a great spot for the whole family!
Epic is a great, healthy lunch spot with options everyone likes! They have build your own bowls, GF chicken sandwiches and nuggets, smoothies, breakfast bowls, and more. Sophie’s TIP: don’t forget to BYOKetchup!
Every beach town has a favorite pizza place. Vito’s is an island favorite pizza shop right beside Tower 7. You can always find surfers hanging outside enjoying a slice of pie, and they also deliver!
Spoonfed Kitchen and Bakeshop is a cute storefront and restaurant with awesome homemade baked goods and different salads. Their granola is to die for!
Last but not least is Robert’s Grocery. This historic joint (WB’s oldest store and only grocery!) has everything you might need if you don’t want to leave the island to go to the grocery store. They also have a hot bar, famous for their chicken salad sandwiches and fried chicken!
NIGHT TIME EATS.
Tower 7 is a local and visitor favorite. This little Tex Mex spot right off the beach stays jam packed. Their famous Tower 7 burrito is to die for, and their chips and fresh salsa are the best I have EVER had. That is saying a lot. They also source their fish locally from Mott’s, so it is the freshest fish on the island! HACK: Get someone in your party to ride down on their bike to put your name down while everyone else is still getting ready. They don’t take call aheads!
Brasserie is a charming French spot right across the bridge, hidden in a shopping center by Harris Teeter. Their indoor dining is always buzzing with lively conversation and the outdoor terrace is complete with a turtle pond (aka something to keep the kids occupied!). To start, they have an amazing french baguette, French onion soup, and calamari. They are also known for their oyster bar. You CANNOT go without getting their pomme frites (TIP: ask for extra ketchup). For the main course, I love the build your own salad topped with fresh, grilled salmon, and someone always orders the flounder.
Ceviche’s is a Panamanian restaurant in a cute little yellow shack. I had never tried Panamanian food before I came here, but it is now one of my all-time favorite restaurants. They have great seasonal guacamole and fun craft cocktails. I get the same entree every single time: Corvina a la Plancha. It is a fresh, white fish on top of the best coconut rice I have ever had, roasted seasonal veggies, fresh salsa, and fried plantains. You do not want to miss out on this cuisine!
Osteria Cicchetti (aka the OC) is another family favorite. They have tons of seating for large parties and they take Italian food to the next level. Spaghetti and meatballs, chicken penne alla vodka, and chicken parmesan -- all of the Italian staples will have your mouth watering as you read through the menu. We always order calamari and two of the carne pizzas as appetizers. My dad claims that the stone fired pizza is the best in town!
The Ice Cream Stand never has no wait! With local scoopers making friends with the kids on the island, this shop is the perfect place to cool off on a hot day! It’s conveniently located on the loop across from Tower 7 for an after dinner treat.
Boombalatti’s is another Harris family fave! Right when you walk inside, your senses are ignited with fresh aromas of waffle cones on the warm press. We don’t leave without their signature Cinnamon Caramel Oatmeal Cookie ice cream. Some other favorites are Caramel Macchiato, Chocolate Fudge Brownie, and Banana Pudding!
What’s a beach town without surf shops?
Sweetwater Surf Shop is the best of the best. Cool custom gear, boards, bathing suits, and Rainbows, they pretty much carry everything you need. Their Sweetwater embroidered hoodies are my favorite sweatshirts ever. Simple and so comfy!
South End Surf Shop is another gem. It is frequented by locals and hosts fun events like polar plunges and holiday cookouts. Follow them on instagram to get morning updates on how the waves are if you like to surf!
Check these off the list next time you’re in town! But good luck finding parking in the warmer months:)