Wilmington North Carolina Attractions - Nearby NC Beaches, Family Vacation Spots, Historic Sites and Other Places of Interest

Wilmington is located on the NC Coast in New Hanover County. US 17 runs right through the city. Its an old town so there’s lots of historic landmarks here to visit. Beaches are located southeast of the city and are less than a half hour drive away. You can take a sightseeing cruise. Be sure to see the USS battleship North Carolina, the Cape Fear Museum and the Cotton Exchange which is now Boutique shops.

Wilmington is a deep-water port city situated on the banks of the Cape Fear river. The city is rich in history with lots of historic buildings to explore. It is a beautiful destination for a wedding, honeymoon or romantic getaway. Many TV programs and movies have been filmed here. The USS battleship North Carolina is docked here. The closest beaches are: Carolina Beach, Kure Beach, Ft. Fisher on Pleasure Island, Wrightsville Beach on Shell Island and Masonboro Island.

You can get to Wilmington via I-40. From Raleigh its a 2 and a half hour drive.

Historic downtown Wilmington has lots of things to do and see. You can visit art galleries, museums, stroll the Riverwalk or tour historic homes. You can take a dinner cruise. Tour the USS Battleship North Carolina. Walk through one of Wilmington's beautiful gardens. The Railroad Museum is worth noting it is located at the Coastline Center. The museum features memorabilia and artifacts from our railroad era of American history. You can sun and swim at one of the area beaches. Charter a boat. Sports fishermen can enjoy the best fishing on the North Carolina coast. Golfers can choose from over 90 golf courses that are in the area.

The Wilmington Railroad museum is on the Cape Fear river in the Atlantic Coastline Warehouse. Exhibits are about the importance of the Wilmington railroad during the Civil War.


Orton Plantation and Gardens is an 18th century rice plantation. It is located off NC 133 between Wilmington and Southport.

Airlie Gardens is another beautiful spot to visit. The gardens are over 100 years old.

wilmington north carolina riverview pictures

List of Tourist Attractions in Area

  • Bellamy Mansion - plantation home
  • Brunswick Town State Historic Site
  • Poplar Grove Historic Plantation
  • USS North Carolina Battleship
  • Historic District (riverfront shopping, dining)
  • UNCW
  • North Carolina Aquarium
  • Cape Fear Museum
  • Henrietta Riverboat
  • Independence Mall
  • Corning Company
  • General Electric Company
  • DuPont
  • Riverwalk
  • Annual Azalea Festival
  • Wrightsville & Carolina Beaches

Wilmington North Carolina Hotels

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