Best Shopping

From all the shops and stores in a city, 10Best narrows the options to those places with the most appeal and the best offerings. We deliver a carefully vetted selection to let you explore Outer Banks shopping on your own. If time is really tight, though, and you don't have the leisure to look through all our offerings, we present our Best Shopping list for Outer Banks. Here, we distill the best businesses down to a special selection of ten. These places promise a stellar experience and a taste of the city that you just can't miss.


This exceptional shopping center features retail options for every kind of consumer. Over 27 high-end brand name outlets like Carter's, Polo Ralph Lauren, and Nautica offer discount prices on factory items. Outlet also includes J. Crew, Banana Republic Factory and Gap, among others.

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Beneath the shady elm trees, this boardwalk shopping center boasts a plethora of seasonal shops and restaurants. Peruse quaint art galleries, summer clothing boutiques, outdoors stores and bookstores. Plenty of coffee stops, delis, burger joints, and other restaurants are sandwiched between the many shops. Remember, the only road through the town of Duck to reach Scarborough Lane is two-lane, so plan accordingly. Rainy days are often quite busy as well.

Read more about Scarborough Faire →

Parrot Bay

If you need beach-themed decorative items for your house, Parrot Bay's extensive collection is perfect for you. Expect to find festive hand-made artwork, wall hangings, candles, and other collectibles. Toys, jewelry, and plenty of Outer Banks paraphernalia are also featured at this cute, fun shop-stop.

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The premier sporting goods retailer on the Outer Banks, Kitty Hawk Sports offers the best selection of outdoor clothing and accessories as well as a variety of new and used beach boards and kayaks. Kitty Hawk Sports also offers recreational equipment rentals for surfing, skimboarding, kayaking, and the new craze, paddle boarding - a long, broad surfboard for standing on and paddling in open water. They have four locations throughout the Outer Banks.

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Since its opening in 1948, Gray's Department Store has maintained a tradition as one of the area's best retailers. This isn't just your average souvenir shop, either. Gray's carries the finest Outer Banks sportswear, sweatshirts, t-shirts and accessories. The array of designer summer clothing includes brands like Tommy Bahama, Eliza B, and Vera Bradley.

Read more about Gray's Outer Banks Lifestyle Clothing Company →

Eating in during your family vacation? Don't forget the wine. Chip's Wine Market offers a grand selection of fine wines and specialty beers to accentuate your dining or social experience. Allow wine experts to assist you in choosing the right wine for your taste, food, and budget. Chip's also has a decent selection of cigars. For the true wine enthusiast, inquire about private wine classes with Chip himself.

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With the most extensive collection of bathing suits and beachwear on the Outer Banks, be sure to check out Birthday Suits before you and your family hit the beach. Birthday Suits features a number of well-known summer clothing lines like Billabong, Hurley, and Roxy as well as smaller, boutique-style and designer brands. This isn't just a women's bikini store either. Plenty of men's and boy's clothing lines are also available.

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Enjoy your shopping experience alongside the scenic Currituck Sound. A plethora of arts and craft shops, clothing boutiques, shoe stores and outdoor outfitters make their homes in this shopping center situated literally on top of the water. Because the shops are across the street from the similarly popular Scarborough Faire shopping center, you may experience some traffic getting in and out of here during peak vacation season. Remember, rainy days are busy shopping days on the Outer Banks.

Read more about Duck Waterfront Shops →

While Christmas shopping on your summer vacation may seem odd to some, it's actually quite a popular pastime in the Outer Banks. Since its opening in 1987, The Christmas Mouse has helped families adorn their houses with the best and most unusual decorations. Scores of tree ornaments, different varieties of Christmas lights, table-top nutcrackers, snowmen, nativity scenes and other collectibles are packed into this beach-side store. If Christmas just seems too far away to worry about in July, don't worry - they're open year-round.

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The rich, unique history of the Outer Banks has instigated a similarly rich, unique literary culture for local readers and writers. At Manteo Booksellers in Downtown Manteo, these shopkeepers work to capture and promote the literary jewels inspired by the area's history and folklore. Browse a vast library of colonial history, pirate tales, ghost stories and local cookbooks. Contemporary fiction and non-fiction works are also available on-site.

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