Kill Devil Hills is arguably one of the busiest summertime towns in the Outer Banks, due to its wide collection of shops, restaurants, and off-the-beach entertainment options. Close to the other beach vacation Meccas of Nags Head and Kitty Hawk, visitors won't have to travel too far to find an abundance of fun things to do, rain or shine.… (More)
There are seven villages on Hatteras Island, including the "tri-villages" of Rodanthe, Waves and Salvo, which are located adjacent to each other, and essentially feel like one, long town. Learn about the history, geography, population, and area claims to fame with this list of fun facts and trivia.… (More)
The town of Kill Devil Hills has its own unique set of rules and regulations for accessing its public shoreline. Visitors will want to keep the following rules and regulations in mind when visiting any public beach in Kill Devil Hills… (More)
Kill Devil Hills is ideal for kids, thanks to a collection of on and off-the-beach activities, and a central locale that makes a trip to neighboring Outer Banks attractions a breeze. Take a break from the sandcastle building, and discover these sites, attractions and activities that are sure to keep little hands busy… (More)
Find out whats going on in Kill Devil Hills with our list of the biggest annual events. Discover everything a couple needs to know about Outer Banks weddings at this weekend-long event which features a full expo of area caterers, bakers, officiants, musicians, venues, and all the services a posh beach wedding could possibly need. Expo highlights include an annual reception, a fashion show, a tour of area hotels and vacation homes that allow weddings and special events,… (More)
In Kill Devil Hills, the entertainment extends well off the shoreline to a number of plazas, shopping centers, museums, and other iconic OBX sites. Because Kill Devil Hills is located in the heart of the Outer Banks, it's veritably close to everything, making it easier for visitors to explore the following list of quintessential rainy day destinations… (More)
The Outer Banks began as a fisherman's paradise and continues its reputation today as one of the best fishing destinations on the East Coast. In Kill Devil Hills, anglers will find plenty of good catches on the beaches, from the pier, and even in the open Albemarle Sound waters, making the town a great, central locale to cast a line.… (More)
With the exception of local family stories and legends, Kill Devil Hills' history is hard to trace prior to the Wright Brothers' historic First Flight in 1903. In fact, even the origin of the town's fascinating name is not certain, and the many theories that surround the moniker involve pirates, shipwrecked buccaneers, and barrels of rum strong enough to "kill the devil."… (More)
Real estate in Kill Devil Hills is diverse, thanks to its interesting mix of oceanfront vacation homes, condo communities, and soundside residential communities. As a result, buyers will find a wealth of properties to choose from that range from quiet wooded lots to opulent 10 bedroom investment homes.… (More)
The Wright Brothers National Memorial is a "Must See" attraction for any Outer Banks aviation enthusiast, history lover, and virtually any Kill Devil Hills vacationer who wants an up-close look at the towering granite structure that towers over the town's landscape.… (More)
Avalon Fishing Pier offers everything you need for a long, enjoyable day (or night!) of fishing. First built in 1958, Avalon Fishing Pier is about 700 feet long, stretching out to the Atlantic Ocean over 12 to 15 feet of water.… (More)
Kill Devil Hills is one of the most popular vacation towns along the Outer Banks and is known for its abundance of beaches, restaurants, shops, and historical sites.
Beach vacationers who want to be in the heart of the action, and have central access to a number of OBX sites from the aquarium and historic attractions in Manteo to the quaint shopping centers in Duck, will find a lot of to love about Kill Devil Hills.
A Quick Overview of Kill Devil Hills
Kill Devil Hills was populated for several centuries before the Wright Brothers put the town and its neighbor, Kitty Hawk, into the national spotlight. Up until the 20th century, the town was populated by fishermen, salvagers, and lifesaving station employees who served the 1878-constructed Kill Devil Hills Life Saving Station - one of 11 stations that were built along the Outer Banks in the 19th century.
After the Wright Brothers' famed 1903 flight, tourism began to trickle into the area, beginning first with Nags Head to the south, and eventually spreading to other regions of the central Outer Banks. By the 1950s and 1960s, Kill Devil Hills had become a popular tourist destination in its own right, with lines of classic beach cottages, small motels, and even a fishing pier, the Avalon Pier, which is one of the oldest piers on the Outer Banks.
Today, Kill Devil Hills is considered the "hub" of the Outer Banks. Located in the middle of the central OBX beaches, (the busiest stretch of shoreline from Corolla to Ocracoke), Kill Devil Hills has a wide range of shopping centers, chain businesses, activities, and more than 70 restaurants.
The oceanside and Beach Bypass-bordering regions are busy throughout the year, and especially in the summer months when the area is packed with beach vacationers. The landscape changes the further west you go, however, as beach cottages on pilings are replaced with 1-2 story homes and residential communities. The majority of locals live in the western region of Kill Devil Hills, and the even quieter community of Colington, which borders the Albemarle Sound.
Effectively, visitors on the hunt for long days on the beach, fun tourist activities, and a myriad of restaurants and shopping will stay close to the oceanside. Retirees, long-term visitors and new residents will want to scope out the quieter areas on the soundside, or "Westside" of US Highway 158.
How did Kill Devil Hills get its name?
The origins of Kill Devil Hills' unique name are debated, but all legends surrounding the unusual moniker date back several centuries.
- One legend depicts a band of buccaneers spending some time on shore and drinking local moonshine that was strong enough to "Kill the Devil."
- Another theory dates back to the 1700s, and revolves around Virginian William Byrd, who smugly reported that most of the rum drank along the Carolina beaches was from New England, and was so nasty and unhealthy that it would called by the locals as "Kill Devil."
- Yet another legend ties the name to a batch of rum that washed ashore from a random shipwreck - the only goods salvaged from the former passing vessel.
Regardless of the true story, most theorists and lifelong locals attest that alcohol was most likely involved in securing this town its unusual moniker of Kill Devil Hills.