Good vibes, the buzz of the boardwalk, the breeze of the open ocean, and great fishing all combine to make Carolina Beach rentals a doozy for all sorts of visitors. There are pads on the oceanfront that'll have surfers and lovers gazing at the waves with longing. There are family homes that can host the whole crew between seafood festivals and all the arcade action. This guide should help you find the place that's right for you…

The various types of vacation rentals Carolina Beach, NC

Use the helping hints below to zero in on escapes that you think will suit the most. They outline some of the main features and styles of lettings found in the town, revealing the joys of oceanfront living and the kitsch character of some of the quirkier boltholes.

Securing a pet-ready stay in Carolina Beach

Everyone with a pooch knows that a family vacation isn't really a family vacation if the tail-wagging compadre isn't in tow. Thankfully, with all the pet-friendly properties lining the boardwalk and the beach roads here, you won't have to drop Fido at the kennels when you mosey down the Cape Fear River. Just be wary of pet restrictions on local beaches, and know where and when you can let them off the leash.

The pull of the oceanfront

If you've got a little extra cash to splash on that Carolina Beach vacation rental this year, it's certainly worth thinking about funneling it into the location. Why? Well because there are places that let you wake to the sound of the Atlantic rollers lapping against the shore, and end days with sundowner beers overlooking the ocean.

Forget-me-not bungalows and beach shacks

You won't be able to miss a select few of the vacation rentals in Carolina Beach. Shimmering rose red, sea blue, or pugnacious pink on the sides of the sandy streets, they are vibrant and vivacious spaces built like old-timey Victorian beach shacks with a twist of the Caribbean.

An area guide to Carolina Beach

Booking a place to stay without knowing your way around town can be risky. No one wants to arrive only to find that bumping boardwalk trail is a mile to the north. Or, it could be worse, you might end up too far from the beachfront to do that morning yoga session. Let the pointers below help with all that…

There's life in the Carolina Beach Boardwalk

You bet you there is. In fact, the Carolina Beach Boardwalk is the beating heart of the resort. It's a mix of saloons and surf-turf canteens, smokehouses and taffy stalls. It's a great area to come with the whole family, that's for sure, especially after you factor in the mix of affordable condos and townhouses with multiple bedrooms, shared swimming pools, and games rooms.

North to Freeman Park

The arched timbers of the Carolina Beach Fishing Pier sit one side and the boating harbor sits the other up by Freeman Park, meaning this is the quarter of town to head to if you're looking to sling the rod or do a little water skiing. The area is packed with multi-story beachfront homes, many offering balconies that jut out over the grassy dunes.

There's more to love in Kure Beach

Venture south along aptly-named Pleasure Island and you'll eventually come to the standalone resort of Kure Beach. For many, it's the undisputed king of the family "beach-cation" in North Carolina, boasting the oldest fishing pier in the Tar Heel State. It's got pristine lengths of yellow beach to boot. And there are all sorts of cute, quaint homes that have enough space for the troop.

The quest for cheap Carolina Beach rentals

You won't have to fork out a lot to get down to Carolina Beach vacation rentals this year, which is great news for anyone planning surf lessons or boat charters. Just follow the tips below and you could find that places cost a little less than you expected…

Beat other bookers to the best deals

There's a reward for getting in there early, particularly if you're chasing the coveted beach homes that pop up on the oceanfront of Pleasure Island. That's because any good deals in those will tend to go fast – lightning fast if you're talking the warmer summer months.

Trade in the waves for cheaper rates

They might be sat on a narrow barrier isle that filters off the mouth of the Cape Fear River, but Kure Beach and Carolina Beach aren't just a single street. There are several blocks to choose from, and any that sit further back from the shoreline will likely have houses that cost a fraction of those right on the sands.

Seasons change prices

It might seem obvious but you're going to need to pay extra during the summer months, and for escapes to the NC coast come spring break. To get around those price spikes, what about a bout of R&R in fall? The weather can still be warm and sunny, but you'll usually pay much less for a place to stay.