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Beaufort, NC

Once settled in, we squeezed about a gallon of water out of our clothes and headed back out to explore the third oldest town in North Carolina.  Originally inhabited by the Coree Indians, then French Huguenots, then the British established a fishing village dating back to the 1600’s, Beaufort was founded as a town in 1709.  The wreck of Black Beard’s ship, the Queen Anne’s Revenge, lies just off shore and many of the houses along the docks were built in the 1700’s.  We decided to spend a full day exploring this very cool historic town.

If you’re going to do a self-guided walking or biking tour of Beaufort, I suggest making your way over to the Beaufort Historic site at 130 Turner Street.  You can pick up a map to guide you through the six-block historic district.  Be sure to visit the “oldest and most haunted” Hammock House, once (and maybe still) a lodging place for Black Beard.  History buffs will also enjoy the Old Burying Ground.  I found the North Carolina Maritime Museum the most fascinating with artifacts from the Queen Anne’s Revenge, old whaling tools, fossils and tons more.  Across the street is the museum’s boat house where old boats are restored and replicas are built.  All I’ve mentioned so far is free (donations are appreciated I’m sure). 

Clawson’s 1905 Restaurant, located in one of Beaufort’s oldest buildings, has a good selection of brew and served up great seafood.  The Spouter Inn Restaurant is another great place to eat.  Their clam chowder and oyster burger are delicious and the shrimp and grits are not bad either.

Places to stay are limited.  We stayed at the Inlet Inn, a beautiful place.  A bit pricey, but with a fireplace and a view of the waterfront, it was worth the price.  And of course, it’s within walking distance of everything I’ve mentioned.

We spent a full day exploring and only saw a small portion of the town and surrounding attractions.  Fort Macon, built around 1817 and islands with wild ponies is a short ferry ride away.  The Cape Lookout lighthouse is another local destination we will save for our next visit.

 Next stop Oriental.  Thanks for reading, Jack

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