Wilmington Travel Guide

  • At Cure Beach
    At Cure Beach
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    bellamy mansion
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Wilmington Things to Do

  • The Battleship North Carolina

    Spend a morning or afternoon touring the historic Battleship North Carolina, a memorial to the 10,000 North Carolinians who died in WWII. It survived a torpedo in 1942 and has been in Wilmington since 1961. You can visit most of the ship, including the crew's quarters, galley, sick bay, gun turrets, engine room, plotting rooms, radio central, the...

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  • Orton Plantation

    This beautiful plantation is currently not open to the public. Louis Moore Bacon, a descendant of the family that built the property, bought Orton Plantation late in 2010. It has been closed for renovations since June 2010.

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  • The Cotton Exchange

    the cotton exchange is a collection of eight historic buildings on water and front streets. these buildings once housed a cotton exchange, a flour mill. a printing company, and a seed merchant. today the cotton exchange is a collection of restaurants and shops. for shopping and dining the cotton exchange is worth a visit when in downtown...

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  • Latimer House

    4 out of 5 stars

    The Latimer House is a bit difference because you don't just tour the inside, it's a meeting place for you to take walking tours of the downtown area. In addition to being open for tourists, it's home to the Lower Cape Fear Historical Society. At the website you'll see that there are a range of events planned through this group almost each weekend....

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  • The Cape Fear Museum

    4.5 out of 5 stars

    I've only been in the museum once or twice. You can see some pretty interesting artifacts that are relevant to the area and for the Michael Jordan fans, there's a little display of pictures of his early playing days (he graduated from Wilmington Laney High) and for some odd reason, one of his report cards.

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  • Wilmington's City Hall/Thalian...

    this beautiful greek revival building was built in 1858. thalian hall was designed by architect john m. trimble. over the years this building has served as wilmington's city hall, opera house, and is currently wilmington's center for performing arts. thalian hall is open to the public by tour or you can attend a performance at the hall. thalian...

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Wilmington Hotels

Wilmington Restaurants

  • Front Street Diner

    4.5 out of 5 stars

    Wonderful view... see all the boats.. and wonderful food and service... have tshirts you can get to take home with you, they are bit of a fashion statement... definitely a must have!! :) Don't take reservations, first come first serve... but upstairs is a favorite of mine... you can see EVERYTHING and its Air Conditioned!!! :) Shrimp & Grits......

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  • Underground Sandwich Shoppe

    I had a turkey/swiss on toasted rye bread that was delicious. The owner told me that he has no affiliation with London, but he just thought the name would be appropriate. Why, you ask? Check out the next photo and you'll understand.

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  • I love NY Pizza

    3 out of 5 stars

    My boyfriend and I stopped in looking forward to some tasty pizza yesterday. We each ordered two slices of plain cheese pizza. We started eating and noticed that the pizza tasted burnt and disgusting. My boyfriend took our second pieces back up to the counter to tell the staff that the pizza was burned and we would like two new, fresh slices. They...

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Wilmington Nightlife

  • pub

    the copper penny is a fun place to eat and drink in downtown wilmington. the copper penny has a execellent beer selection, a wine list, and a full liquor bar. a great after work pub. casual.

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  • micro brews

    the front street brewery is a great place to check out their selection of micro brews. they brew ales, IPAs, pilsners, porters, and wheat beers. i liked their dram tree scottish ale. a fun place to do a beer tasting in downtown wilmington. they also have good american pub food moderately priced. casual.

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  • local bar

    the barbary coast is a local bar located on front street in downtown wilmington. nothing fancy here it's just a bar. good beer selection and moderately priced drinks. a fun local bar to grab a beer or two in downtown wilmington. casual.

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Wilmington Transportation

  • Wilmington NC International Airport, ILM...

    Wilmington International Airport was created during World War II for for antisubmarine patrols and training. Today the airport has two runways and a single terminal which has eight gates. Flights from Wilmington are limited to Charlotte, New York, Orlando and Atlanta. Wilmington is one of the Space Shuttle's emergency landing sites.

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  • Tour by Horse Drawn Carriage

    With as much to see as Wilmington offers you might need to seek alternative modes of transportation...When I arrived in Downtown Wilmington I immediately saw the horsedrawn carriage trolley. I was a bit tired of walking as I'd already spent hours on the Battleship NC and I was hoping my family would go for the idea. Unfortunately, I wasn't so...

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  • Boat Tours

    Henrietta III is the steamboat you see usually parked on the riverwalk. It leaves a few times a day and offers meals while seeing the Cape Fear River. They offer a Friday and Saturday night dinner and dancing cruise each week. My favorite would have to be the Sunset Tour.It also offers special outtings like Mother's Day cruises and Valentine's Day...

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Wilmington Shopping

  • Small Shops

    Historic Downtown was probably my favorite part of the trip. In the intersection of Market St (the main street) and 3rd street is a bunch of shops. They range from buddha shops, coffee shops to ice cream shops to clothing stores and art galleries. There are people drinking coffee at small tables and some getting a bite to eat. Others are walking...

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  • Variety of Small Shops

    "In constant occupancy since the pre-Civil War decade, the Sprunt Building was home of the Cape Fear Flour and Pearl Hominy Mill in 1884--the largest of its kind in the South. In 1919-20, Alexander Sprunt & Sons rebuilt the structure to its current Neoclassic revival style to house the thriving cotton export business. They shipped cotton to ports...

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  • Local merchants selling crafts

    The Cotton Exchange houses dozens of shops and several restaurants that make it easy to lose track of your day. Ranging from thrifty to expensive, the stores offer something for everyone. I used to make necklaces, and there is a store there that was my favorite place to buy beads.Mon. - Sat. 10:00am - 5: 30 pm, many shops open Sunday afternoon A...

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Wilmington Local Customs

  • Home of Woodrow Wilson, 28th Pres. of...

    Across the street from the Latimer House you'll see a big, beautiful church along with the historical marker. This one is actually pretty interesting. Our 28th President's Dad was the preacher here at the First Presbyterian Church, which is still open to visiters and worshippers.From the church's website:Thomas Woodrow Wilson, 28th President of the...

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  • Beautiful Gardens in the City

    It's so weird to walk past all these old houses and every now and then there are beautiful gardens like this one here... I understand how it's so close to the water so the old days had plenty of irrigation. But, nowadays, with capitalization on tourists...Amazing. It really says a lot about the city and the respect they have for nature and the...

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  • Confederate Pride

    You can't get away from the Condfederacy while in Wilmington. In fact, while on Third St you'll see the statue that commemorates the Confederacy Memorial. The inscription of the monument is as follows:1861-1865TO THE SOLDIERS OFTHE CONFEDERACYCONFEDERATES BLEND YOUR RECOLLECTIONSLET MEMORY WEAVE ITS BRIGHT REFLECTIONSLET LOVE REVIVE LIFE'S ASHEN...

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Wilmington Warnings and Dangers

  • orton plantation

    on the wilmington VT site are a number of tips on orton plantation. this historic site has recently been sold and is no longer open to the public. the park ranger at fort anderson told me that there are no plans to reopen the site to the public in the near future. near the orton plantation is fort anderson which is worth the 18 mile side trip from...

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  • The Wilmington area has been...

    The Wilmington area has been hit by 5 hurricanes in the last 6 years. Keep a close eye on the weather in August and September.

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  • Wilmington Hotels

    52 Hotels in Wilmington

Wilmington Tourist Traps

  • will2710's Profile Photo

    by will2710 Written Sep 8, 2002

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I'd have to say this is an ok tourist trap: the Cotton Exchange. Located on the water front, it is a two story maze of quaint shops and great restuarants. Heck, I go there to find interesting gifts for people!

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Wilmington What to Pack

  • Packing List

    As always, make sure you bring a camera to capture moments that you can revisit when you get back home. If you forget to research your trip or you just need a useful map, head to the Cape Fear Coast Convention & Visitors Bureau-Visitors Information Center.The building is a Queen Anne style courthouse dating back to 1892. It's located on the...

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  • Packing List

    beach materials!! We have wonderful beaches. Kite flying is a blast at the southern end, I have past many hours there with friends. Also a lot of great camping, so a tent couldn't hurt if you have the room.

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Wilmington Off The Beaten Path

  • fort fisher

    fort fisher was a earthen confederate fort located on the southern tip of the cape fear peninsula. because of it's strategic position at the mouth of the cape fear river fort fisher was nicknamed the "gibraltar of the confederacy". between december 7 th and december 27 th 1964 the forces of union general benjamin bulter laid seige on fort fisher....

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  • carolina beach

    located ten miles east of downtown wilmington is the town of carolina beach. carolina beach offers a white sand atlantic beach, scores of good restaurants and bars, and ocean front hotels. carolina beach has much to offer tourist visiting the cape fear area. from downtown wilmington take US 421 east to carolina beach. for more information see the...

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  • fort fisher museum

    the fort fisher civil war museum is a must see spot on a visit to fort fisher. the museum has exhibits and maps explaining the battle of fort fisher and an interesting collection of civil war relics. the fort fisher civil war museum is located at the fort fisher historic site in kure beach. kure beach is 18 miles southeast of wilmington on US 421.

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Wilmington Favorites

  • Orton Plantation

    Orton Plantation is just amazing. Highly recommend it to anyone but more specifically for anyone who wants to have a incredible wedding.For more pictures and review visit Orton Plantation

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  • Cape Fear Coast

    Wilmington is not a popular destination but definitely more popular for the area. It's small and quiet. There are no major hotels around but more bed and breakfasts. The Cape Fear Coast is what the area is more commonly known for. It's comprised of the Wilmington area and along the rest of the coast including the beaches and tip of North Carolina...

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  • peek ahead

    With the webcam link below you can peek ahead to see the weather conditions at Wilmington.http://weatherbug.excite.com/LiveCameras/Excite/LiveCameras.aspx?zcode=z4639&lid=CTHDRThe camera is located in the suburb of Myrtle Grove.

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Battleship North Carolina
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city market
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thalian hall
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Map of Wilmington

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