Crystal Coast Weekend – Beaufort & Morehead City

We have passed through both Beaufort and Morehead City on multiple occasions on our way to or from somewhere else. We always said we wanted to discover the area in more depth so when we decided on a trip to Rachael Carson Reserve, we decided that we’d spend some extra time wandering through the ‘twin cities.’ We’re glad that we did, but it sure did come with some challenges, the first being where were we going to stay for the 3 nights.

The Inlet Inn – Comfort & beauty on the Beaufort waterfront

We pulled the trigger on the trip at the last minute so that our lodging choices were narrow but we found what appeared to be just a stunning hotel directly on the waterfront in Beaufort: the Inlet Inn! With views of the waterfront, the harbor, Carrot Island with its wild horses across the harbor, this was perfect…and the rates were excellent, not to mention walking distance to all the shops and restaurants in town. It sounded too good to be true. Well, it was! Once we chose it and went to book, we found out online booking was not available so when we called….of course, it was filled for the weekend! Be that as it may…if you’re considering a visit to Beaufort, the Inlet Inn is where you want to stay!

We went to our back up plan and ended up finding a place to stay on Atlantic Beach. As close as it was to Beaufort & Morehead City, we felt the short drive would not be a deterrent. We chose the Sandpiper Inn because it had efficiency rooms so that we could prepare our meals rather than going out to dinner. We were trying to do the trip on a shoestring. Big mistake! The motel was so far less than acceptable, we decided it was in our best interest not to touch any of the very few, disgusting plates, pans, silverware, etc. If you’re ever in the Atlantic Beach area, stay away from this place!

As luck would have it though, we turned the lemon into lemonade. The following morning we went out to breakfast at Grumpy’s in Morehead City and were ecstatic with the location, the food and best of all, the service. We were so thrilled with everything, we decided it would be our place for the following morning when they, in fact, outdid themselves! Working very short-handed, everything was still perfect including the service where not one employee did not maintain a smile on their face and laughter in their voice.

When we searched for a dinner option, our luck and results were equally spectacular. We browsed through menus to satisfy our urge for a good chowder (among other things). We ended up choosing the Ruddy Duck not just because of the chowder, but because it sounded like the same chowder that our family has made for many, many years which is more of a clear ‘soup’, thin and no milk but lots of bacon! It was heavenly as was the rest of the meal and again, the service was just remarkable. Of course night #2 laned us right back at the Ruddy Duck. If you’re ever in the area, make it a point to visit both of these restaurants. You will not be disappointed.

Here is a small gallery of some of the glorious scenes you’ll find along the water of both Beaufort & Morehead City. Click on any of the photos to view them full size. You can see more photos in the Beaufort Gallery.

If you love ‘urban’ architecture, you’ll fall in love with Beaufort. Established in 1709, Beaufort, N.C., is a quaint coastal town located on Beaufort Inlet, a channel leading south to the Atlantic Ocean. It’s also the third oldest town in the state. You’ll find old-world Southern charm, steeped in maritime history. The photos below should give you a good idea of how captivating this town is. Click on any of the photos to view them full size. Reprints can be ordered on the Gallery page.

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