Wilmington is a beautiful coastal city that gives residents amazing access to Cape Fear and the Atlantic Ocean. If you want to live on the East Coast, but you don't want the cold winters that come up north, and you'd rather avoid the giant swamp that is Florida, Wilmington is the perfect place for you.
When you live in Wilmington, NC you can enjoy a vibrant coastal city, beautiful beaches, and a charming and historic city. What's not to love.
Wilmington Area Communities
The Bayshore/Marsh Oaks Area of Wilmington has an established neighborhood feel with a wide range of amenities, perfect for anyone hoping to settle down in a space with a true sense of community.
Carolina Beach and Kure Beach
Beach bums rejoice! Carolina Beach and Kure Beach are part of Wilmington's Pleasure Island, and offer up an unbeatable beachfront lifestyle with a close knit community. Residents love the picturesque sunsets and time on the water.
Rocky Point is a growing Wilmington suburb that offers residents an escape from the hustle and bustle of the touristy parts of the city. With a comfortable pace of living and plenty of open spaces, Rocky Point is a wonderful place to live.
Have the best of all possible worlds when you make Downtown Wilmington your home. This vibrant city offers up beach-side living, a historic town, and a great nightlife. You really can have it all here.
With the University of North Carolina Wilmington at its heart, Eastwood Road lets you the best of living in a college town without having to take classes. This perfectly located community makes it easy to hit the beach on days off.
Landfall is the largest gated community in the Wilmington Area, giving residents the perfect suburban lifestyle, while still giving them easy access to beautiful East Coast beaches and Wilmington's vibrant downtown.
Top Wilmington School Districts
Finding the right school district for your children has a major impact on their quality of life and path to success. These are the top rated school districts in the Wilmington Area; if you want to delve deeper into school records and standards for the State of North Carolina, NewHomeSource has a guide to all the resources you need to find the right school for your child.
Best Private K-12 school near Wilmington: Cape Fear Academy
Cape Fear Academy has an A+ rating on Niche.com, and ranks highly for academics, teachers, college prep, food, administration, and clubs and activities. It has 652 students in grades K-12 with a student-teacher ratio of 12 to 1. According to public data 100% of students of Cape Fear Academy go on to attend a four year university.
Best public elementary school in Wilmington: Walter L. Parsley Elementary School
Walter L. Parsley Elementary School has an A rating on Niche.com, and ranks highly for academics, teachers, and diversity. It has 543 students in grades K-5 with a student-teacher ratio of 15 to 1. According to state test scores, 77% of students are at least proficient in math and 75% in reading.
Best public middle school in Wilmington: M.C.S. Noble Middle School
M.C.S. Noble Middle School has an A rating on Niche.com, and ranks highly for academics, teachers, and diversity. It has 629 students in grades 6-8 with a student-teacher ratio of 14 to 1. According to state test scores, 57% of students are at least proficient in math and 62% in reading.
Best public high school in Wilmington: Isaac M. Bear High School
How can you not love a school with a bear in its name? Isaac M. Bear High School has an A+ rating on Niche.com, and ranks highly for academics, teachers, college prep, administration, and diversity. It has 230 students in grades 9-12 with a student-teacher ratio of 23 to 1. According to state test scores, 92% of students are at least proficient in math and 87% in reading.
Top Employers in Wilmington
The largest employers in Wilmington are in the education sector.
New Hanover County Schools
The local public school system is the largest employer in the Wilmington Area, providing jobs for educators and administrators.
Coastal Carolina Community College
Community college systems also represent a major section of employment in the Wilmington Area, providing great educational services.
University of North Carolina Wilmington
The University of North Carolina Wilmington is the third largest employer in the Wilmington Area, providing great jobs and education.
Cape Fear Community College
Cape Fear Community College is another community college system in the Wilmington Area that employs a wide range of people.
Pharmaceutical Product Development
In addition to the education sector, research and development play a major role in the economic life of Wilmington with Pharmaceutical Product Development being a major employer in the area.
Wilmington Area Museums
Cape Fear Museum of History and Science
You can learn about just about everything at the Cape Fear Museum of History and Science. This fantastic museum has an extensive collection of exhibits that will tickle your fancy, including charming gardens, dinosaurs, and a fossilized skeleton of a giant ground sloth.
Museum of the Bizarre
The Cape Fear Museum of the Bizarre is a great museum experience that showcases strange oddities from around the world. A crystal skull, mirror maze, a mummified mermaid, Houdini's Ouija Board, and more await you at the Museum of the Bizarre. Prepare to be scared!
Battleship North Carolina
The Battleship North Carolina is one of the most iconic sites of Wilmington. The most highly decorated battleship of World War Two is a living piece of history that you can tour to learn more about the past and your home.
Maritime Museum At Southport
The Maritime Museum At Southport is a charming museum where you can learn more about Wilmington's oceanic past. Learn about the special place the sea holds in the heart and history of Wilmington at the Maritime Museum at Southport.
Wilmington is one of the oldest cities in the country, and has a number of beautiful historic houses that you can tour in Wilmington's iconic southern style. The Bellamy Mansion Museum, the Burgwin-Wright House and Gardens, the Latimer House, and other beautiful homes can get you connected to the history of your home.
Great Parks in the Wilmington Area
Wrightsville Beach is one of the most iconic park spaces in the Wilmington Area. Sparkling views of the Atlantic Ocean make it a wonderful place for long walks on the beach, lazy days by the sea, day drinking your favorite beverage, and fun picnics with your loved ones.
Freeman Park is another Wilmington Area beach park. Surfing, fishing, swimming, and boating are all allowed and encouraged at Freeman Park. If you aren't in the mood to get wet, you can still fly a kite and enjoy a cook out on the sand.
Long Leaf Park
Long Leaf Park showcases another beautiful aspect of Wilmington scenery- its lushly wooded green spaces. Go for relaxing walks through shaded paths, over picturesque bridges that cover sparkling streams. Long Leaf Park is a realxing space to spend time in Wilmington.
Living in Wilmington
Wilmington serves up a comfortable southern climate, minus the swamp. Beautiful beaches and the sublime Cape Fear ensure that you can enjoy fun times on the water all year long. Picturesque boardwalks lined with beautiful flowers and views offer up beautiful promenades, perfect for strolling- or your Instagram.
Wilmington Housing Trends
With a great blend of hip downtown neighborhoods and family-friendly suburbs, there are many housing options depending on the kind of lifestyle you are looking for.
Housing costs are rising over time, but there are still a variety of options depending on your pricepoint, as there are many suburbs and cities surrounding Wilmington.
Median Home Price: $430,000
The median home price in Wilmington is a bit higher than the national median home price, still making it a plausible place to settle down, if you're a first time homebuyer, or an experienced home shopper looking for the perfect retirement destination.
Amazing Wilmington Restaurants
Good eats are easily found in Wilmington. All sorts of global food are on the menu in Wilmington.
Take a gastronomic tour around the world at Circa 1922. This great dining spot offers up small plates from all over the world from tapas to sushi.
Southern fusion meets your favorite bistro at The Basics. This comfortable dining area has your new favorite snack or meal.
Pilot House Restaurant
When in Wilmington, chow down on great seafood! Pilot House Restaurant is a great waterfront restaurant that serves up fresh fish and other seaside favorites.
The Copper Penny
Great beer- check. Great food- check. A comfortable pub atmosphere- check. The Copper Penny has all you need for good food and good times.
Your Wilmington food tour isn't complete without stopping at Savorez, a romantic Latin American resturant that makes mouths water and bellies full.
Great Attractions for Wilmington Stay-cations
The Airlie Gardens has celebrated over a century of flowers by the sea. This beautiful botanic garden has a stunning pomades lined with heritage oaks, yearly nature themed events, striking blooms, and more. You'll love spending time at the Airlie Gardens and learning more about Mother Nature.
Noni Bacca Winery
At the end of a fun day in Wilmington, head over to the local Noni Bacca Winery. You can sample a fabulous cellar full of local wine. Enjoy good times, great drinks, and lovely people when you and your loved ones visit Noni Bacca Winery.
Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park
For a fun time with the entire family, the Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park always delivers. You can have high adrenaline fun thanks to this great water-park's exciting slides and rides. For a more relaxed time, you can always hit up the lazy river.
Historic Thalian Hall
In the heart of Wilmington's historic district is the Historic Thalian Hall. This iconic theater and town hall take you back in time to Wilmington's golden years. Lake Victorian architectural details make the Historic Thalian Hall a beautiful space to explore.
Wilmington has a great mix of unique local shops and big-name stores, often found side by side in shopping areas. There’s plenty of opportunity to shop ‘til you drop in this city.
The Cotton Exchange
The Cotton Exchange is a beautiful shopping complex spread out through eight historic building in the heart of Wilmington. Local businesses sell boutique clothing, fun Wilmington gifts, great food, and more! Visiting The Cotton Exchange is a must do for Wilmington residents.
Mayfaire is an upscale shopping experience in Wilmington. With a wide range of brand name retailers, you are sure to find your favorite place for retail therapy in Mayfaire.
Chandler's Wharf is a waterfront mall where you can find great supervision and great gifts. If you want to go shopping and spend time by the water, then Chandler's Wharf can fill both those desires.
Lumina Station serves up local flavors in a shopping mall. Local merchants sell a wide range of goods that give your home, kitchen , and wardrobe a piece of Wilmington's unique flavor.
Places of Worship
Wilmington has numerous places of worship that represent a wide range of faiths and religions.
Basilica of Saint Mary
The Basilica of Saint Mary is a historic Catholic congregation housed in a historic building. This lovely church is as welcoming as it is beautiful.
Temple of Israel
The Temple of Israel is a historic Jewish community housed in a 150 year old temple. This is the oldest synagogue in North Carolina and the oldest Reform congregation in the south.
Wilmington Islamic Learning Center
The Wilmington Islamic Learning Center is a conveniently located Mosque that offers Islamic worship and community services to the Wilmington Muslim community.
Chua Tung Lam Temple
The Chua Tung Lam Temple is a calm and peaceful Buddist temple in the Wilmington Area. You can learn more about Buddism here.
After graduating in 2016 from The University of Texas with a degree in English, Sanda Brown became a content writer for the BDX with a focus on website copy and content marketing.
At the BDX, Sanda helps write and edit articles on NewHomeSource.com, writes website copy for builders, and manages a team of freelancers that work on additional content needs.