Monday, September 6, 2010

Our Gluten Free Family on Vacation: Bald Head Island, North Carolina

Not only were we not hit Hurricane Earl on our week long vacation to Bald Head Island, North Carolina--but the shells that were lined up on the fence leading to the house all remained untouched despite the Weather Channels warning. The island is actually 5 hours south of the Outer Banks, nestled off the coast of Southport. There are only golf carts and bicycles on the island which is less than half the size of Martha's Vineyard and accessible only by a passenger ferry in Southport. Leaving your car behind and checking your luggage in makes it a very special vacation destination.

At the end of August, with school in session for the Southerners who usually vacation on the Bald Head Island, it feels magically deserted. You arrive to a little port with a few shops where you claim your luggage and board a "tram" which is an enclosed cart that looks like a long golf cart. Driving in the cart to your house all you see are beaches and houses. The usual commercial fare is happily absent from the landscape.

There are two clubs on the Island which visitors to the island can join for the day or the week. Bald Head Island Club has golf and tennis and a pool with a slid for kids and The Shoals Club has a beach and a pool. We mostly barbecued--inspired by our fascination with Man versus Food where the narrator eats conspicuous amounts of road food. One night we went out to Eb and Flo's for some lobster, steak, corn and potatoes. Eb and Flo's was able to prepare us very plain, uninspiring gluten free food. The good news is they totally got "gluten free." The bad news was because they got gluten free they totally served us the plainest, simplest food imaginable.

I read a book called Will Eat for Food about food writing and started reading Julie and Julia. At one point, there were more flies on the beach than people and we all enjoyed a sparkling swim in the clear sea where we saw some skate a few feet away.

Tonight Bald Head Island is going to be the vacation spot for Kate Plus 8 on TLC if anyone wants to see Bald Head Island in action, although I imagine our trip was very different from the one depicted in the show. Huffington Post also has a write up of the Kate Plus 8 visit to Bald Head Island.

random trip details...
We found our rental through Vacation Rental By Owner. Driving down to Bald Head Island we stopped at Chipolte's and Five Guys Burger and Fries for some gluten free road food. We stayed at the Hampton Inn in Emporia on our drive down and the Omni Hotel in Richmond, Virginia on our way down.


Ben Barton said...

Sounds like an amazing trip! Super glad it worked out so well for you all. Congrats on unplugging for a week too. I have trouble unplugging even for a day!

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Rachel said...

what do u get at 5 guys that's GF?

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