The Outer Banks are a long series of barrier islands separating mainland North Carolina from the pounding surf of the Atlantic Ocean. The transportation backbone along the Outer Banks is an 80 or 90 mile stretch of Route 12 from Kitty Hawk to Hatteras.

To the north is Kitty Hawk and Nags Head, a commercial zone full of gift shops, mini-golfs, kitschy restaurants, and time share travel resorts, but also the site of the Wright Brothers National Memorial at the site of the world's first motorized airplane flight and home of the impressive sand dunes at Jockey's Ridge State Park where they even have a hang gliding school.