1 beach trip destination that's perfect for every generation

Posted March 30, 2016 11:22 a.m. EDT

Visitors to Wrightsville Beach can enjoy stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking, or sailing on the Intracoastal Waterway.

Every family has its go-to vacation spot that brings back special memories and provides fresh fun each year. For many, that place is Wrightsville Beach, N.C. Generation after generation, Wrightsville Beach always offers activities for the entire family.

Trying to plan your next family reunion or beach vacation there? Here's everything you need to know, whether you are looking for an action-packed trip or a chance to kick back and relax.

1. Clear Air

While it’s long been known for its sparkling, blue waters and spacious beach, Wrightsville Beach is also North Carolina's first smoke-free beach. This lets families breathe easier while enjoying a variety of outdoor activities or just catching up on a little R&R.

2. Full House

No matter the occasion, you'll need a place for the whole group to stay. Rent a house along the Wrightsville Beach coastline and live like a local -- from small cottages to large beach homes, there is something for families of all sizes and budgets.

Need a little more space from all the relatives? Book multiple rooms in one of the island's oceanfront resorts, and enjoy the private time.

3. Fun-To-Do Lists

Whether you want to entertain the little ones, try a new adventure and get active, or peruse the shops in a walkable town, be sure to make time for all that the island has to offer.

Take your little pirates on they'll never forget with a buried treasure hunt on nearby Masonboro Island. The tour is led by a "real-life" pirate who sings songs, tells stories and leads kids around the same island where the legendary Captain Kidd is said to have buried his booty. Or, sign them up for the kid's club programs at one of the island's , like the Blockade Runner Beach Resort or Holiday Inn Resort Wrightsville Beach.

and hard-to-impress teens with family surf lessons from the pros in this nationally-recognized surf town. Or stay active, but take it down a notch, with stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking or sailing on the Intracoastal Waterway.

If rest and relaxation is more up your alley, then enjoy a day in the sun, and stroll around downtown Wrightsville Beach. From souvenir shops to funky new fashion boutiques and everything in between, you are sure to get your retail therapy fix on the island or just over the bridge at open-air, pedestrian-friendly shopping villages. Leave time to stop by one or two of the island’s surf shops -- and . A Wrightsville Beach institution since 1969, Redix features everything from fishing gear to top designer beachwear.

4. A Family Feast

End the day together with family dinner, and join in the island's bustling nightlife scene. Choose between casual grills and fine dining, fresh seafood or dishes with an international flair. No matter what you select, rest assured that it will be accompanied by a sunset view, coastal breezes and good company.

Places like , overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, and , overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway, offer live music on select days throughout the summer.

Feel like dining in? Stop by to pick up all of your ingredients. For more than a quarter century, it's been serving up some of the freshest seafood to locals and visitors, alike.

With so much to see and do at Wrightsville Beach, it's no wonder so many families return to the island year after year.

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