Are Canopies Allowed on Wrightsville Beach, NC?

Published July 29th, 2022 by Allen Campbell

are canopies allowed on Wrightsville Beach, NC

As summer quickly approaches, many people are starting to make plans for their next beach trip. If you’re wondering if canopies are allowed on Wrightsville Beach, the answer is yes – but with some restrictions.

In this blog post, I’ll provide a detailed overview of the rules and regulations for using canopies on Wrightsville Beach. Also, I’ll share some more regulations that will help you to finish off your beach vacation without any hassle. So, whether you’re an explorer or a local, be sure to read on to stay informed.

Are Canopies Allowed on Wrightsville Beach, NC?: Summary

Rules and Regulations of Wrightsville Beach, NC: Beach & Canopy Tent Rules

Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina

Surf Fishing

Wrightsville Beach is a great place to go fishing, especially if you’re interested in surf fishing. You’ll be able to fish throughout the entire beach, except for areas near bridges which include the Banks Channel Bridge.

Anglers 16 years old or older must have a saltwater fishing license to fish at the beach. You can purchase a saltwater fishing license at your local bait shop or obtain one online through the website of the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission.

Illegal to disturb sea turtles

Sea turtles have called the beach home for many years, and their population is slowly but surely growing. If you find sea turtles nesting on Wrightsville Beach, be aware that it is illegal to harass them with loud noises or molest their eggs. 

These laws are in place to protect endangered species from human intervention. So, it is necessary to not disturb them and they should be left isolated.

Don't leave your canopy

Leaving behind tents or canopies is not only against the law but also creates more work for the town’s public works department. It is very important for you to pack up before sunset so that everyone can enjoy a clean beach. Anything left on the beach after sunset will be considered trash.

Don't walk on sand dunes

When people walk on sand dunes, they damage the vegetation that could otherwise grow there. It is important to know that by walking on sand dunes, you are not only damaging the environment but also making it more difficult for new life to form. 

The sand dunes along the shoreline are an important part of our ecosystem that provides habitat for many different plants and animals. You should help in order to preserve this environment by not walking on sand dunes.

Cooking devices are restricted

Wrightsville Beach’s no-cooking policy is in place to prevent smoke from grills, portable camp stoves, and open fires from disturbing other visitors or damaging wildlife. 

Additionally, cooking food on the beach can produce unpleasant smells that other people may not enjoy. If you want to have a hassle-free day at the beach, make sure to leave your cooking devices at home before heading down to Wrightsville Beach.

Different colors of Flag

Keep an eye on the flags by the shoreline to gauge to ensure the difficulty level of swimming conditions. 

Different colors indicate different conditions, with green being the calmest and ideal for swimming, yellow signifying some waves or currents but nothing too dangerous as long as you stay close to shore, and red being more dangerous and has stronger waves or currents. Lastly, red and white meaning that the beach is closed.


Arriving early will ensure you get a parking spot, but arriving too late may mean you have to park further away from your desired destination. 

The first come, first served rule applies to parking, so it’s best not to arrive too late. Also, the weekends and holidays tend to be the busiest times, so expect parking to be more difficult to find then.

Driving Instruction

Wrightsville Beach does not allow driving on the beach, but if you have a 4WD vehicle, you can drive south towards Freeman Park in Carolina Bay. This scenic spot is about 35-40 minutes away from Wrightsville Beach and is a great place to explore North Carolina. 

You can purchase passes or get tickets online before your trip so that way nothing holds up access when arriving at this beautiful spot.

Fill any man-made holes

It is very important for you to fill the holes that you have made before leaving the beach. Because if you don’t, it could create a problem for others who are trying to enjoy the beach or for emergency vehicles that need access to the area.

Loud noise is not allowed

If you want to avoid being disruptive or distracting, it’s best to keep noise levels under control. The city of Wrightsville Beach has a law in place limiting how loud sounds can be. Whether you’re playing music, throwing a party, or operating a vehicle, you’ll need to be mindful of the noise you’re making. Otherwise, you may face penalties.

Pets guidelines

Be sure to keep your pet on a leash, and have a bag or container for waste disposal, when exploring the sand. You are allowed to bring your dog to Wrightsville beach from October 1st to March 31st. In hot summers, the sand can get very steamy, so be careful of your dog’s paws.

You should take care to keep your pets shaded and hydrated during hot days at the beach. At last, keep in mind that dogs are not permitted to enter the beach from April 1st to September 30th.

Are Canopies Allowed on Wrightsville Beach, NC? – Conclusion

Canopies are allowed on Wrightsville Beach as long as they do not obstruct the view of other beachgoers. As per the Beach authority, the canopy must be removed before sunset.

If you’re looking to set up a canopy at the beach for a day or two, it is a great way to stay shaded and comfortable. Be sure to check all the rules and regulations that I discussed in this article before heading down to Wrightsville Beach. From parking to pet guidelines, this article has all the helpful tips and instructions that you should follow for a great time at the beach.

Allen Campbell with Master Canopies

Allen Campbell

Allen is a full time writer at and enjoys traveling around the United States and exploring nature. He enjoys writing about canopies as he believes they are extremely crucial in having a successful camping trip whether it be a trip to the beach, mountains, or the open plains.

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