Bald Head Island is a peaceful coastal town located along the eastern side of the Cape Fear River that flows into the North Carolina coast. Families should consider staying at one of many vacation rentals in Bald Head Island to enjoy easy access to the water, as well as some of the best seafood in the nation. Restaurants in the area serve everything from country-style oysters to fresh seafood wraps, along with a plethora of non-seafood options and kid-friendly dishes. If you’re searching for great family-friendly restaurants in Bald Head Island, here’s a top 10 list to help narrow down your options.
1. Bob’s Dogs – Bald Head Island, North Carolina
If your kids enjoy a good hot dog every once in awhile, you can’t visit Bald Head Island without a stop at Bob’s Dogs. This popular locally-owned diner offers cozy indoor and outdoor seating, and your little ones are sure to get a kick out of the sign that welcomes visitors with the greeting, “I’m Dreaming of a Bob’s Hot Dog.” Fun hot dog options include the “Cheese Dog in Paradise” with cheese and chili, the “Oki Dog,” topped with mustard and slaw, and the “Island Dog” with mayo and fruit salsa.
2. Fishy Fishy Cafe – Bald Head Island, North Carolina
If you’re in the mood for some fresh seafood after a day of boating, head over to Fishy Fishy Cafe. The cafe sits along the docks of the Cape Fear River, and it’s only accessible by boat, which makes it a great place for a little family adventure. While the menu consists mostly of fresh coastal seafood dishes, the “Little Minnow” section also offers kid-approved grilled cheese sandwiches, chicken, and pasta.
3. Frying Pan Restaurant – Southport, North Carolina
For some tasty fried seafood and some of the best dessert in town, hop on the Bald Head Island ferry and take the two-mile trip across the water to the Frying Pan Restaurant in Southport. Your kids are sure to have a blast on the boat, and you can take advantage of your day trip by taking a walking tour through this welcoming coastal town. Feast on crab cakes or tasty po’ boy sandwiches, and make sure to conserve your appetite for a delicious dish of homemade sweet potato bread pudding.
4. Delphina Cantina – Bald Head Island, North Carolina
For a quick bite before a day of exploring or sightseeing, pop into Delphina Cantina. This cozy family restaurant sits right on the water and offers an outdoor patio that’s also dog-friendly if you happen to be traveling with your pooch. Choose from a wide selection of Mexican fare that includes soft shell crab tacos and delicious torta sandwiches while your kids enjoy junior-sized quesadillas and burritos. Make sure to save a little room for dessert, so you don’t miss out on the churros.
5. The Shoals Club – Bald Head Island, North Carolina
Treat your kids to a fun day of swimming topped off with tasty sandwiches at the Shoals Club. Sign up for a day pass membership, and once you’re finished enjoying the massive pool, the Sandbar Grille is just a few steps away. Enjoy a tasty lunch of salmon BLTs or oyster po’ boys while your kids nibble on chicken strips and burgers off the junior menu, then treat everyone to some refreshing ice cream for dessert.
6. Pelicatessen – Bald Head Island, North Carolina
For some delicious pizza followed by a cool and delicious root beer float, take the kids over to the Bald Head Island Club and visit the Pelicatessen restaurant. Sit around the pool and chat with fellow vacationers while you enjoy a meal with the family, then pick up a pint or two of homemade ice cream to keep at your vacation rental for a late-night snack.
7. Mojo’s on the Harbor – Bald Head Island, North Carolina
Enjoy amazing harbor views while your kids check out all the boats cruising through the water when you take the family for a delicious lunch at Mojo’s on the Harbor. The kid-friendly menu has everything from shrimp bites to “Mojo’s Marvelous Mac and Cheese” for the little ones to enjoy, and you’re sure to love the chef’s specialties such as “Mojo’s Gumbo” and fresh watermelon salad.
8. Will O’the Wisp – Bald Head Island, North Carolina
Will O’ the Wisp is a great spot for a pit stop if you’re enjoying a family boating day, as it sits just minutes from the Bald Head Island Harbor and offers gorgeous views as far as the eye can see. The rustic waterfront patio is comfortable and relaxing, and your kids can choose from seven flavors of “Loco Pops” after lunch, including salted caramel and cherry lime. If you visit during dinner hours, every Wednesday is family bingo night for a little extra fun.
9. Moore Street Market and Deli – Southport, North Carolina
For a fun day trip and lunch in a bright and cozy spot, take the ferry over to the Moore Street Market and Deli. Have a seat in the cute dining room complete with checkered tablecloths, and choose from daily sandwich specials that feature fun names such as “Taylor’s Big Hug” turkey sandwich and “Addi’s Honey” ham sandwich. On your way out, grab some cold cuts from the deli for a future picnic or sandwich night at your vacation rental.
10. Sandpiper Coffee and Ice Cream – Bald Head Island, North Carolina
If you have a busy day of sightseeing ahead and you’re in need of a quick breakfast, stop by Sandpiper Coffee and Ice Cream. Order a delicious cappuccino or latte and some breakfast sandwiches for the family, then load up on home-baked muffins and pastries to nibble on as you go about your day.
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