Nags Head, Ocracoke Island make the list of ‘Coziest Small Towns in the U.S.’

"Ocracoke is the place to go when you want a quiet summer vacation," says the recent study from [Image courtesy]

What do you think of when you think of the Outer Banks?

For many, the locale is synonymous with its mellow features that draw visitors to and from the barrier islands each year: The warm, golden glow of the sun, the restless ocean, and the multitude of laid-back amenities the destination has to offer. 

There’s no surprise that two of it’s hot-spots, the town of Nags Head and Ocracoke Island, have secured spots on’s Coziest Towns in the United States.

When taking into consideration what makes a location “cozy,” the study observed categories including weather, food, and activities. This also included data points like winter temperature, average snowfall, cafes, bakeries, crafts, and bookshops, among other indicators.

Nags Head and Ocracoke Island are among the top four “coziest” rankings in the state of North Carolina in addition to Highlands and Silver Run Falls located in the mountainous region.

Nags Head ranks at #102 and Ocracoke Island ranks at #130 on the list of 170 destinations across the nation’s entirety.

Nags Head is accredited by the study for its “towering sand dunes, many boardwalks, and incredible beaches,” while Ocracoke is accredited for its “several historic landmarks, postcard-ready lighthouse, a history museum, a British cemetery, and a nice assortment of restaurants and shops.”

You can access the full list of “Coziest Small Towns” in the U.S. study here: