Topsail Beach is a lightly populated stretch of beach located on the southeastern coast of North Carolina. If you love the water, enjoy relaxing days sunbathing on the sand, boating, fishing, paddleboarding, and even parasailing. Southside Park is a kid-friendly favorite with a large playground, wide-open spaces, and beautiful views of the Atlantic. Topsail Beach even has a skating rink that’s open every evening. Vacation rentals include cozy oceanfront cottages, luxury condos, and beautiful homes with private beach access. Discover 12 North Topsail Beach vacation rental locations for your next vacation.

1. Topsail Island Sound

Topsail Beach Sound
Source: Flickr / gardener41

With a close proximity to Jacksonville, Sneads Ferry, and Holly Ridge, the Topsail Beach Sound waterfront is the perfect place to look for vacation rentals. Bring your canoe or kayaking and paddle along the Intercostal waterways, or visit the Hammocks Beach State Park where you can surf, swim, fish, or go boating. The sound presents calm water and a feel of tranquility when you step out on your deck to enjoy the morning sunrise.

2. Surf City

Beach between 19th and 20th streets in Surf City
Source: Flickr / Michael Napoleon

Surf City is one of the quieter beaches near Topsail, so you can take a morning walk in private. The local Karen Beasley Sea Turtle Rescue is a great way for children to learn about these majestic animals and how important the ecosystem is to their survival. Visit one of the art galleries or museums close by, or ride the carousel in Southside Park.

3. North Topsail Beach

North Topsail Beach
Source: Flickr / gardener41

Stay near the center of action when you book a vacation rental along North Topsail Beach. Take a stroll along the Surf City Pier, or grab some fishing poles and catch some perch. Take the kids to the Missiles and More Museum where you can learn how missiles are made, or schedule a boat tour or a fishing charter and set sail over the Atlantic.

4. Sneads Ferry

Sneads Ferry
Source: Flickr / rjones0856

Keep things exciting and adventurous at Sneads Ferry. Rent a pair of jet skis and bounce along the waves, or take a dolphin safari tour and watch these beautiful creatures playing just off the shore. Relax and enjoy your stay with luxurious spa treatments, or play a round of golf with friends at the North Shore Golf Course directly next to the water.

5. Hampstead

Hampstead
Source: Flickr / cdn.wyndwaternc

Just to the west of Topsail Beach is Hampstead, a small unincorporated community that provides a quiet respite from the busy beach. Let the kids expend some energy with a Riverwalk hike along the Cape Fear waterfront. The Bellamy Mansion Museum is one excellent example of antebellum architecture, or head to the Airlie Gardens and stroll through a burst of colorful blooms.

6. Wilmington

Dolphin Building
Source: Flickr / Donald Lee Pardue

Wilmington is most noted by its beautiful historic district from Water Street and Market Street all the way down a full 230 blocks. In this magnificent setting you will find old churches, museums, horse-drawn carriages, riverboats, and trolley cars all within walking distance. Take the family on a tour of the Battleship North Carolina, or sign up for a sightseeing tour so you don’t miss the most important attractions. Vacation rentals include downtown apartments and modern homes.

7. Wrightsville Beach

Piping Plover at Wrighstville Beach
Source: Flickr / Gerry Dincher

Wrightsville Beach is a nature lover’s paradise. Watch the sand pipers run along the sand, or spread out a blanket and get some sun on the beach. Try your skill at stand-up paddleboarding, or rent some equipment and choose between surfing, windsurfing, or kite surfing. Head inside to break the heat of the day at the Wrightsville Beach Museum of History, and then purchase some fresh fish at the Motts Channel Seafood Market for grilling back at your vacation rental.

8. Emerald

Bogue Inlet Pier
Source: Flickr / Zach Frailey

Emerald Isle is located along the Outer Banks in North Carolina. This beautiful stretch of sand is the ideal place for walking, swimming, and fishing. Step onto the Bogue Inlet Fishing Pier and catch some fresh fish directly from the ocean, or throw your nets over the side and catch a few crab for your seafood feast. The kids will enjoy a friendly game of putt putt. Afterwards, head to the downtown area for a meal at one of the restaurants.

9. Virginia Creek

Virginia Creek
Source: Flickr / U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Norfolk District

Virginia Creek is a small community in Hampstead with fresh water for kayaking and canoeing. Take the family for a long hike through the wilderness, or fish along the shore for salmon and bass. There are several shops nearby for gifts.

10. Topsail Creek

Topsail Creek
Source: Flickr / shadle

Topsail Creek is a short canal that runs from the Intracoastal Waterway to the New Topsail inlet. This quiet stretch of water is the ideal location for vacation rentals. Visit the Shard Shop and let the children paint their own masterpiece, or go shopping at the Silver Sands Premium Outlets where you are sure to find a bargain. Arnett’s Gulfside Trail Rides lets you ride horses directly on the beach, or cool off with a swim in the water.

11. Burgaw

Pender County Court House
Source: Flickr / Jimmy Emerson, DVM

If you prefer a vacation rental inland and away from the beach, Burgaw is a quiet and friendly location. Take pictures at the Pender County Courthouse, or look for vintage furniture and keepsakes at the Burgaw Antiqueplace. The Pender County Museum holds various artifacts and history on the region, and at night there are several bars and clubs in town for the adults.

12. Sloop Point

Sloop Point
Source: img.seorets.com

Sloop Point is a small village In Pender County. Here, you will find several quiet waterfront vacation rental listings. Take an afternoon stroll through the Sloop Plantation, and then stop by the Hot Mess Studio for unique gifts. For the kids, Sloop Point offers paintball, or head to the beach for watersports or sea shell collecting.