If you're planning a late-summer trip to visit Carolina Beach, please be aware of the recommended guidelines for the health and safety of our community. Below are some great resources and information on travel restrictions, safety tips, and frequently asked questions.

Remember, if you are planning on visiting our beautiful coastal community, some of the businesses and recreational activities you enjoy may not be available due to the continued spread of coronavirus. Nevertheless, if you do still plan to enjoy a beach getaway on Pleasure Island, I'm confident you can still have a great time while practicing good health and safety measures.


Are the beaches open?

As of this writing, the three main beaches in our area (Carolina Beach, Kure Beach and Wrightsville Beach) are open, but with some restrictions. We are still currently in Phase II of Governor Roy Cooper's reopening plan, which requires face masks or face coverings to be worn when in public spaces--both indoors and outdoors--particularly where social distancing will be difficult or impossible.

The Carolina Beach Town Council made the following amendments to its State of Emergency Declaration on May 8:

  • Lodging (short term rentals including hotels, motels, inns, vacation rentals), public parking and beach are open. Visitors are advised to contact lodging properties directly with questions about reservations and availability.
  • Freeman Park is open but with additional restrictions in effect as of May 22.
  • Visit the Town of Carolina Beach website for the most recent updates.

Are restaurants and shops open?

Restaurants may be open with indoor and outdoor seating; however, they are required to operate with limited capacity. Face coverings are required for employees and customers. Customers may remove their face coverings once they are seated, but are expected to cover their face when not seated at their table. Take-out, delivery, and curbside service are options that many restaurants are continuing to offer. 

What about bars, gyms, coffee shops, and other popular businesses?

Breweries, distilleries and wineries can remain open as long as they operate under the same capacity restrictions as restaurants and follow social distancing and guidelines for face covering. Bars and nightclubs, however, remain closed to the public during this time.

Gyms, movie theatres, arcades, bowling alleys, exercise facilities, dance clubs, public playgrounds, and museums remain closed at this time. 

Group gathering protocols require no more than 10 people gathered together indoors and no more than 25 people gathered together outdoors.


COVID-19 cases in New Hanover County, NC as of Aug. 14, 2020: 

  • 2,666 confirmed cases (+8% from the previous week)
  • 21 deaths (+5% from the previous week)
  • 142,170 confirmed cases in North Carolina
  • 2,313 deaths in North Carolina

Health & Safety Tips

Practice the 3 W's: 

  • Wash your hands frequently (especially after being out in public, using the restroom, before preparing food, etc.)
  • Wear a mask or face covering
  • Wait six feet apart to maintain social distancing

Remember to avoid reusing disposable paper masks and disposable gloves. If you use cloth face coverings, wash them before wearing them again. 

Don't share food, beverages or eating utensils with others, especially those who are not members of your household.

If you are unable to access clean soap and water to wash your hands, use alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content.


When searching for information on the coronavirus or COVID-19, make sure you stick to reliable and reputable sources. Here are a few great examples:

  1. New Hanover County Health Department:
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:
  3. Unites States Food & Drug Administration:
  4. National Institutes of Health: