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Fishing is especially good here -- in fact, it's the reason most visitors come to Morehead City. The Gulf Stream brings in blue marlin, tarpon, amberjack, and other prizes, in addition to inshore fish. Gulf Stream fishing is possible April through November. The area has about 80 miles of surf and 400 miles of protected waterways.

A near-perfect day or evening on the water can be enjoyed on the Carolina Princess, 604 Evans St., Morehead City (tel. 800/682-3456 or 252/726-5479; www.carolinaprincess.com). The Princess is a trim vessel that accommodates up to 95 passengers and has a snack bar and sun deck. Full-day bottom fishing trips cost $100 for adults, $70 for children 12 and under, and $40 for a passenger who goes along just for the ride and doesn't fish. The boat supplies the rod, reel, and bait. Ice can be purchased to take with you.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.