©

Topsail Beach trip planner

Create a fully customized
day-by-day itinerary for free

Itinerary Planner
+ Add destination
2 adults
Adults
- +
Teens
- +
Kids
- +
Close

Topsail Beach

Topsail Beach is a town in Pender County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 383 at the 2012 census. It is part of the Wilmington Metropolitan Statistical Area.HistoryLocal folklore claims the name, Topsail, originated during the 1700s when pirate ships roamed the coastal waters. Historians explain that marauding pirates hid their ships in the channel behind the island and waited for passing merchant ships loaded with goods. The pirates would pursue and attack the merchants, claiming the cargoes as their own. Eventually the merchants became aware of this infamous hiding place and began to watch for the tops of the pirates' sails showing over the rolling dunes - hence the name Topsail Island.Prior to World War II, the only access to Topsail Island was by boat. Area residents frequently made this short trip to picnic and search for the pirate Blackbeard's rumored buried treasure.During World War II, the U.S. Navy took over the island and began a joint venture with Johns Hopkins University known as Operation Bumblebee. The waterway was dredged, roads were built, and fresh water was piped onto the island. Operation Bumblebee was the beginning of the space program for the United States Government. An arsenal center for the assembly and storage of rockets was built on the sound side of the island, and launching pads were constructed on the oceanfront. Concrete observation towers were built throughout the island to monitor the experimental launchings. Over 200 rocket launchings took place on the island between 1946 and 1948. When the testing program was dismantled, the government sold the island to the public. The Town of Topsail Beach was incorporated in 1963. Many of the original military structures still stand today. Many of the concrete observation towers have since been converted into private residences and places of business.
Plan the details of your Topsail Beach holiday and any onward adventuring with our easy-to-use United States journey builder tool .
Source
Create a full itinerary — for free!

Plan your trip to Topsail Beach

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Where to stay in Topsail Beach

Browse hotels, guesthouses, and unique homes and book your stay on the world's leading accommodation sites.
Live like a local, find unique places to stay
Millions of travel reviews on TripAdvisor

Recently planned trips to Topsail Beach

14 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES October, romantic, beaches, popular PREFERENCES: October, romantic, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 7 days in Topsail Beach BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 5 days in Topsail Beach & Surf City BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 15 days in Philadelphia & East Coast of USA BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, kids, hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 6 days in North Carolina BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, slow & easy, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Slow & easy 6 days in North Carolina BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, slow & easy, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Slow & easy 10 days in Topsail Beach BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES September, popular PREFERENCES: September ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 10 days in Topsail Beach BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, kids, popular PREFERENCES: August, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 4 days in Topsail Beach BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 4 days in Cincinnati & Topsail Beach BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, teens, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums, slow & easy, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, teens, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 4 days in Fort Wayne & Topsail Beach BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 4 days in Topsail Beach BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, kids, popular PREFERENCES: June, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans