12 Best Fun Things To Do In Southport NC

Discover the enchanting coastal town of Southport, North Carolina, a hidden gem where history, nature, and culture converge to create a tapestry of unforgettable experiences. From the serene Southport Waterfront Park to the lively Loco Jo’s Bar & Grill, each location in this charming town offers its own unique blend of excitement and relaxation. Whether you’re seeking adventure on the water, a taste of local cuisine, or a dive into maritime history, Southport’s diverse attractions promise something special for every visitor.

Southport Waterfront Park  

Nestled along the Cape Fear River, Southport Waterfront Park is a picturesque destination that captures the essence of coastal serenity. This idyllic park, open from dawn till dusk, is a perfect venue for a range of activities. Visitors can enjoy leisurely strolls along the meandering pathways, relax on benches overlooking the gently flowing river, or indulge in a picnic under the shade of sprawling trees. 

The park’s scenic backdrop makes it a popular spot for photography enthusiasts, especially during sunrise and sunset when the sky paints a breathtaking canvas. Families will appreciate the open spaces for children to play, while couples can find romantic spots to admire the views. Additionally, the park hosts various community events throughout the year, making it a cultural hub within Southport.

Also read: Fun Things To Do In Nags Head NC

Southport Fishing Pier  

The Southport Fishing Pier, accessible 24 hours a day, is a paradise for fishing enthusiasts and nature lovers alike. Stretching into the Atlantic, it offers a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Anglers, both novice and experienced, will find the pier an ideal spot for casting a line, with an abundance of fish species in the waters below. 

The pier is not just for fishing; it’s also a fantastic vantage point for bird watching, dolphin spotting, and simply soaking in the panoramic ocean views. The rhythmic sound of the waves and the refreshing sea breeze provide a calming atmosphere. For those who love night fishing, the pier’s round-the-clock accessibility makes it a unique spot under the starlit sky.

Also read: Romantic Things To Do In Morehead City NC

Fort Fisher Ferry  

The Fort Fisher Ferry offers a memorable journey between Southport and Fort Fisher. Operating from early morning until late evening, the ferry ride is more than just a means of transportation; it’s an adventure in itself. Passengers aboard the ferry are treated to stunning views of the coastline, marshlands, and the historic Cape Fear River. The journey provides a chance to witness the area’s diverse marine life and bird species. 

The ferry accommodates both passengers and vehicles, making it a convenient option for those looking to explore the surrounding areas. The trip takes about 35 minutes, during which travelers can step out onto the deck to enjoy the fresh sea air and the scenic beauty of the Cape Fear region. This ferry service not only connects two important destinations but also offers a tranquil escape from the routine, allowing travelers to experience the charm of North Carolina’s coastal landscape.

Also read: Fun Things To Do In Mt Airy NC

Southport By Seaside  

Southport By Seaside is a delightful area that encapsulates the charm of a historic seaside town. As you wander through its quaint streets, you’ll be greeted by a mix of beautifully preserved 19th-century homes, eclectic shops, and cozy eateries, each offering a glimpse into Southport’s rich cultural tapestry. This area is a haven for those who enjoy leisurely exploring, with its array of boutique stores selling everything from handmade crafts to unique souvenirs. 

Art lovers will appreciate the local galleries showcasing works by regional artists. The culinary scene here is equally inviting, with a variety of restaurants serving fresh seafood and traditional Southern fare. Most businesses operate from morning until early evening, allowing visitors ample time to soak in the atmosphere. The waterfront, a short stroll away, offers stunning views and a chance to watch boats sail in and out of the harbor, adding to the area’s serene ambiance.

Also read: Fun Places To Visit In Roxboro NC

Southport Water Tours  

Southport Water Tours present an exceptional way to experience the beauty of this coastal town from a different perspective. These tours, usually available from morning till sunset, cater to a variety of interests. Whether you’re looking for a tranquil sunset cruise, eager to learn about the local ecology, or interested in a historical tour along the Cape Fear River, there’s something for everyone. The guided tours are both informative and entertaining, providing insights into the area’s rich history and diverse wildlife. 

The vessels used are comfortable and well-equipped, ensuring a pleasant journey for all passengers. For those keen on photography, these tours offer ample opportunities to capture stunning waterfront scenes and possibly encounter dolphins and other marine life.


Haven is a unique destination in Southport, combining the tranquility of a peaceful retreat with a variety of engaging activities. Open from mid-morning to late evening, it’s an ideal spot for those seeking a mix of adventure and relaxation. Visitors can enjoy outdoor activities like biking and kayaking, or take a more leisurely approach with yoga and wellness classes. 

The space is designed to be a sanctuary, offering a serene environment where one can unwind and reconnect with nature. The staff at Haven are dedicated to providing a memorable experience, whether it’s through guided outdoor adventures or offering a peaceful space for personal reflection. The facility also often hosts events and workshops, adding to its appeal as a community-centric destination.

Also read: Things to Do in Henderson NC

Loco Jo’s Bar & Grill  

Loco Jo’s Bar & Grill is a vibrant and welcoming spot in Southport, known for its delicious food and lively atmosphere. Operating from lunch hours till late at night, it offers a diverse menu that includes local seafood, classic American dishes, and unique culinary creations. The grill prides itself on using fresh, locally sourced ingredients, ensuring a high-quality dining experience. 

The atmosphere at Loco Jo’s is casual and friendly, making it a great place for families, groups of friends, or even solo diners. The interior is adorned with eclectic decor, adding to the restaurant’s quirky and inviting ambiance. In addition to great food, the bar offers a wide selection of drinks, from craft beers to signature cocktails. Loco Jo’s often features live music and special events, making it a hub for entertainment in Southport.

The Tiki Tavern  

The Tiki Tavern is an exotic getaway in the heart of Southport, offering a tropical-themed experience complete with island-inspired drinks and a laid-back vibe. Open from the afternoon till late night, this tavern is the perfect spot for an evening of relaxation and fun. The decor is authentically tiki, with bamboo accents, vibrant colors, and Polynesian art, transporting guests to a tropical paradise. 

The drink menu features a variety of refreshing cocktails, including classic tiki drinks and inventive new concoctions. The Tiki Tavern is not just about drinks; it’s also a place to enjoy good company and lively music, often featuring local DJs or bands. It’s an ideal destination for those looking to unwind after a day of exploring Southport or to kick off a night out on the town.


Artshak Studio and Gallery  

Artshak Studio and Gallery is a creative oasis in Southport, offering a space where art enthusiasts can explore, create, and appreciate art. Open during regular business hours, this studio and gallery showcase a wide range of artworks from local and regional artists, including paintings, sculptures, and crafts. The gallery part of Artshak presents rotating exhibitions, giving visitors a chance to experience a variety of artistic styles and mediums. 

The studio side offers workshops and classes for those interested in learning new art skills or honing existing ones. These sessions cater to all levels, from beginners to advanced artists, and cover a variety of techniques and materials. Artshak Studio and Gallery is not just a place to view art; it’s a community hub where artists and art lovers can come together, share ideas, and inspire each other.

The Adventure Kayak Company  

The Adventure Kayak Company in Southport provides an exhilarating way to explore the area’s stunning waterways. Offering tours and rentals from morning till evening, the company caters to kayakers of all skill levels. Their guided tours are particularly popular, providing a safe and informative way to discover the natural beauty of Southport’s rivers, creeks, and coastlines. 

Experienced guides lead these tours, sharing their knowledge of the local ecology and history. For those who prefer a more independent adventure, kayak rentals are available, allowing visitors to chart their own course along the water. Safety is a top priority, with all necessary equipment and instruction provided. Whether you’re a seasoned paddler or a first-timer, kayaking with The Adventure Kayak Company is a memorable way to experience the tranquility and beauty of Southport’s aquatic environments.

Also read: Places For Japanese Food in Sanford NC

Silver Coast’s Tap & Tasting Room  

Silver Coast’s Tap & Tasting Room is a gem in Southport for wine and craft beer enthusiasts. Operating from midday to evening, this venue offers a sophisticated yet relaxed atmosphere where visitors can indulge in a range of local and regional wines and beers. The tasting room provides an intimate setting for guests to explore different flavors and learn about the winemaking and brewing processes. 

Knowledgeable staff guide patrons through tastings, offering insights into the characteristics of each beverage. Alongside the drinks, the taproom often features small plates and snacks that complement the tasting experience. The decor, with its elegant and modern touch, enhances the overall experience, making it ideal for a casual outing with friends, a romantic date, or a special celebration. Additionally, Silver Coast hosts various events and workshops, adding an educational and interactive dimension to the wine and beer tasting experience.

North Carolina Maritime Museum at Southport  

North Carolina Maritime Museum

The North Carolina Maritime Museum at Southport is a treasure trove of coastal history and culture. Open from morning till late afternoon, the museum offers a fascinating journey through the maritime heritage of the Cape Fear region. Visitors can explore a wide range of exhibits that cover topics such as piracy, shipwrecks, the Civil War, and the area’s fishing industry. The museum does an excellent job of blending historical artifacts, interactive displays, and multimedia presentations to create an engaging experience for all ages. 

Special emphasis is given to the ecological aspects of the region, educating visitors about the importance of preserving coastal environments. The museum also hosts educational programs, workshops, and special events, making it a dynamic center for learning and discovery. For those interested in North Carolina’s maritime history and the intricate relationship between the coastal communities and the sea, the North Carolina Maritime Museum at Southport is a must-visit destination.


In conclusion, Southport, NC, is a vibrant and diverse destination that offers a rich array of activities and experiences. With its picturesque waterfronts, historical sites, creative art spaces, and culinary delights, this coastal town caters to all ages and interests. Whether you’re an avid adventurer, a culture enthusiast, or simply looking for a peaceful retreat, Southport’s unique blend of attractions ensures a memorable visit, leaving you with lasting impressions and a desire to return.