Outer Banks Filming Locations in Charleston, SC (Part 1)
Unless you’ve been exiled to a world without social media or TVs this quarantine, you’ve likely at least heard of the new Netflix show Outer Banks. As soon as it came out I instantly heard chatter of the show around work and on social media: “If you love _____, you’ll LOVE Outer Banks!”, “Have you seen Outer Banks yet? It’s SO GOOD!”. Naturally I put it on my list to check out because it did sound interesting but didn’t rush to watch it because hype isn’t really my thing. However, once I clicked that play button for the first time it was over. I was sucked in just like everyone else. Totally obsessed. I mean, c’mon…a group of unnaturally attractive teenagers running around in a dreamy coastal town? Sign me up. Now the best part for me (besides the abundance of hot guys of course) is that its filmed in Charleston, South Carolina which is only about two and a half hours from where I live. One thing I’ve always been a little obsessed with (especially when I lived in Wilmington, NC) is finding each and every last filming location used in these locally filmed shows and visiting them for myself. I get a weird little rush in knowing that someone from a show I love stood in that same spot or touched that same thing at some point. This weekend I took a long weekend and went down to Charleston to do my own “location scouting” of sorts. I didn’t get to visit all of them due to time constraint and there are still a few I haven’t been able to pinpoint (I’m going to keep doing some research for a part 2 to this post), but I wanted to share what I had so far (most of them) so that anyone visiting Charleston for the last little bit of summer could check some of them out!
[Note: All pictures from the show are taken from a TV screen and are strictly for comparison. Also, this post will include spoilers so if you haven’t watched the whole show or are trying to stay blind to certain moments you may want to avoid the descriptions.]
Location: 106 Haddrell Street, Mt. Pleasant, SC
Probably one of the most picture-perfect locations is Kiara’s parent’s restaurant “The Wreck”. They didn’t even change the name of the restaurant from real life to the show! The Wreck is a quaint little unmarked restaurant hidden back almost by itself in a cove. The history of the restaurant is interesting in itself…converted from an ACTUAL shipwreck into an eating establishment. The atmosphere is laid back – paper plates and southern style seafood. Good food and fun atmosphere, it’s very worth checking out (the fact that it’s used in the show is almost just a bonus).
You’ll also notice that Pope’s dad’s shop, Heyward’s, is filmed in the building next door. I didn’t actually walk over there but you can see it and snap some pictures from the Wreck’s dock.
As a slight bonus site, I noticed that The Playboy was parked right outside the dock of The Wreck. I’m not sure if it was just a coincidence or if it stays there most of the time but keep an eye out for it. You’ll see The Playboyin some various scenes in the show, most notably as the boat where the fisherman caught the bodies of the guys chasing John B.
The Hawk’s Nest
Location: Palmetto Islands County Park (444 Needlerush Pkwy, Mt. Pleasant, SC)
Cost: $2 a person for park entrance
One of my favorite places you can actually visit is The Palmetto Park Island Observation Tower aka “The Hawk’s Nest” where John B falls (cough*is pushed*cough) after a secret meeting with Sarah. You can climb up to the very top and catch the breathtaking views of the marsh and the park. It looks exactly as it did in the show – although, this is one scene you won’t want to reenact. For John B to only have a broken arm after falling from the top of that thing is slightly unbelievable…in real life someone likely wouldn’t be that lucky, so snap your pictures and take the stairs back down.
Washington Square Park
Location: 80 Broad Street, Charleston, SC
As soon as Sarah and John B get off the ferry when headed to Chapel Hill, it shows a quick scene of them wandering through a park together. Ask anyone from North Carolina about this whole sequence and the consensus is generally that we all got a pretty good chuckle from the implication that Chapel Hill is accessible by ferry. The producers swear up and down it was an unfortunate editing mistake to which we say “sureeeee”. However, the park is Washington Square in downtown Charleston and it is gorgeous. It’s a quick stop and worth taking your own stroll through.
Chapel Hill Library
Location: Galliard Center (95 Calhoun Street, Charleston, SC)
Next on their Chapel Hill trip, you have the Galliard Center which poses as the Chapel Hill library where John B and Sarah go to do their research in the archives. The Galliard center is a performing arts center located in downtown Charleston and you can pretend you’re on your own secret mission and check it out for yourself.
Location: 149 King Street, Charleston, SC
When John B and Sarah get off the ferry she decides they’re “too gross” to go to the library that way so they drop into an expensive boutique shop to get some fresh clothes. Just like everyone would do, right? I mean, who needs H&M when you have your rich daddy’s credit card? If you have some spare hundreds burning a hole in your pocket you can go inside to check out some top notch expensive clothes…or you could just check out the outside like I did.
Location: Lowndes Grove (266 St. Margaret St. Charleston, SC)
Everybody sorta wonders what it would be like to live in a mansion, although tbh it does seem too stiff and fancy for my taste. I prefer the laid back life of a pogue. That being said, it is fun to look at the life of a kook and Sarah’s house is the image of that. Filmed at Lowndes Grove, her house is actually a wedding and event venue in Charleston. The house is gated and not accessible to the public, but you can still get a nice glimpse through the gate from the road.
Kildare County Sheriff’s Station
Location: Old Village District, Pitt Street, Mt. Pleasant, SC
At the end of Pitt Street in Mt. Pleasant you’ll instantly recognize the Kildare County Sheriff’s Station. The real life building is used for condos, but you won’t be able to miss it when you pull onto the street. You’ll also notice familiar buildings in the background on Pitt Street, particularly the Drug Store which they left unchanged, as John B is often running around the area trying to escape someone (is it just me or does he get chased A LOT?).
St. Paul’s Lutheran Church
Location: St. Paul’s Lutheran Church (604 Pitt Street, Mt. Pleasant, SC)
While you’re in the area checking out the sheriff’s station you’ll also want to catch St. Paul’s Lutheran Church which is right down the street. This is the church where we see Lana giving her statement to Sheriff Peterkin. Not the most prominent location, but if anything, please notice the mini version of the church in front of the big church. How cute is that???
Summer Winds Motel
Location: Creekside Lands Inn (2545 Savannah Hwy, Charleston, SC)
If you’re looking for a place to stay while in Charleston, you can actually book a room at the Summer Winds Motel from the first episode. Actually called Creekside Lands Inn, it’s very moderately priced and has almost 4 star reviews. They did make some moderations in order for John B and JJ to be able to stand outside the window to hide from the cops, but otherwise it looks almost the same. May or may not already have my room booked for my next trip…
Crazy Old Lady’s House
Location: 209 Ashley Ave, Charleston, SC
When the crew first decided to break into the old lady’s basement, I actually felt kinda bad for her. That only escalated when Kiara and Sarah broke into her actual house to flip the breakers. Then we got to perhaps the scariest moment of the whole show…that 0.5 seconds when that old lady turned her head and showed those empty, ghost white, eyes. I 100% didn’t see that coming…annnnnd suddenly didn’t feel so bad for her anymore when she proceeded to go bat sh*t crazy and chase them around (even though they did kinda trespass onto her property and stuff). The house is located at 209 Ashley Ave in Charleston. The top of the house was digitally added on in editing but the bottom you can go and visit for yourself. Keep in mind this is a private residence so please do not actually trespass onto the property. Stay respectful to the owners and neighbors by staying quiet and taking pictures from the road. Plus, don’t want to take any chances of the old lady coming after you if you trespass, right?
I’ve reviewed post after post of filming locations and thus far no one seems to know where the graveyard is where they found the clues of the treasure left by John B’s dad. I am no different. From my best gathering it appears they may have used 2 different graveyards – one for the grave and one for the gate. I’m not 100% sure of this one but Bethany Cemetery has a tomb that looks eerily similar to that of which they used in the show. As I said, I’m still not 100% but see what you think and let me know! If you have cracked the puzzle of which graveyard they used please comment or email me, I’d love to know. I still can’t find the gate but stay tuned for part 2!
If you haven’t checked out Outer Banks yet…what have you been doing? Just kidding. But seriously you’ll want to jump on that ASAP. It just got renewed for Season 2 and will be back in Charleston filming before you know it. As I said, this is only a portion of the filming locations used and a part 2 is in the works! Stay tuned!
Oh and just FYI…Cullen Moss (aka the jerkish Deputy Shoupe) is actually a TOTAL sweetheart IRL!