Destination guide

Family-friendly vacation home rentals in Wilmington

Fancy a city vacation with easy access to the beach? Then you've come to the right place. Promising miles of beautiful sandy beaches, interesting museums, and stacks of history, Wilmington is a terrific vacation spot. Known as the gateway to the Cape Fear coast, it's home to Wrightsville Beach and Carolina Beach State Park and makes a great base for exploring the region. Book a Wilmington vacation rental in the heart of Downtown and have the Historic District, the Cape Fear Museum of History and Science, and the WWII Battleship North Carolina right on your doorstep.

Things to do

Tourist attractions near Wilmington vacation rentals

A must for history buffs is an afternoon on the USS Battleship North Carolina. Perched on Cape Fear River, the US Navy's most decorated warship is now a museum. Explore its 9 decks, see the guns turrets and crew quarters, and relive its time serving in the Pacific. Other city attractions include Airlie Gardens, the most popular public garden in North Carolina, and the Cape Fear Museum of History and Science. Founded in 1898, it's the oldest museum in the state and explores the many fascinating legends of Cape Fear.


Activities near Wilmington vacation homes

One of North Carolina's premier ports, life in Wilmington revolves around the water. A great way to explore the city is to meander along the Riverwalk, a bustling area which links Downtown to the riverfront's main sights. Nearby, Carolina Beach State Park attracts the fishing, sailing and hiking crowd. Wilmington is also known as the Hollywood of the East, thanks to its popularity as a movie location. Take a sightseeing tour around the Historic District and spot the scene locations from movies and TV shows such as Forrest Gump and One Tree Hill.


Local weather for your stay in Wilmington vacation homes

Long hot summers and mild winters make up the classic North Carolina weather. The summer can see highs of 90 degrees, but fortunately, the cooling winds coming in off the Atlantic Coast act like a natural air conditioner. Summer is also the busiest season to visit, and Wilmington vacation rentals, especially those with pools, can get booked up in advance. The shoulder seasons of spring and fall benefit from blue skies and fewer crowds, as well as the best pick of vacation rentals. Winter in Wilmington is pretty quiet; temperatures can dip to 50 degrees, although snowfall is rare.

Natural features

For cool coastal hikes, the Carolinas are sweet

Perched at the confluence of the Atlantic Ocean and Cape Fear River, Wilmington is one of North Carolina's premier coastal cities. While Downtown is perfect for history buffs, nature lovers tend to head north of the city to Pleasure Island, which separates Cape Fear River and the ocean. It's home to Carolina Beach State Park which has wide sandy beaches, forests, and dozens of coastal hikes through the wetlands. One of the most popular is the Sugarloaf Dune Trail, which runs for 3.5 miles past sand dunes and forests. There's also a nature center and a picnic area.

How to get there

How to get to and around Wilmington

Fly into Wilmington, NC (ILM-Wilmington Intl.), the closest airport, located 3.1 mi (5 km) from the city center.

Family friendly

Kid-friendly attractions near Wilmington vacation rentals

Families with small children have endless options for fun with the kids. Vacation rentals can be found near kid-friendly places like Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park, an amusement park with a water park, go-kart course, laser tag, mini golf, a jungle gym, and more. Kids will also like the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher, a teaching facility with regional aquatic life in interactive exhibits.

Good for couples

Couple's retreat near Wilmington vacation homes

Wilmington has an array of romantic spots to explore on a couple’s trip. Vacation homes are available near places like Airlie Gardens, an expansive garden space with vibrant blooms and walking trails among freshwater lakes, and the Bellamy Mansion Museum, an antebellum home with a formal Victorian garden and restored buildings. You'll also like Masonboro Island State Natural Area, a coastal preserve and barrier island with abundant wildlife and sandy beaches.

Where to stay around Wilmington?

Our 2019 property listings offer a large selection of 2,201 vacation rentals near Wilmington. From 954 Houses to 939 Condos/Apartments, find a unique house rental for you to enjoy a memorable stay with your family and friends. The best places to stay near Wilmington for a holiday or a weekend are on HomeAway.

What is the best area to stay when traveling to Wilmington?

Whether you're traveling with family or friends, here are the areas with the largest selection of vacation rentals for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in Wilmington:

  • Historic District: 79 vacation rentals
  • Airlie: 48 vacation rentals
  • Riverfront: 74 vacation rentals
  • Landfall: 50 vacation rentals
  • Wrightsville West Townhouses: 40 vacation rentals

For other neighborhoods, please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

What are the popular points of interest near where I can stay when traveling to Wilmington?

HomeAway offers a large selection of vacation rentals near lovely places in Wilmington. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular points of interest to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend are:

  • Wilmington Convention Center: 1,975 vacation rentals
  • University of North Carolina at Wilmington: 2,151 vacation rentals
  • Mayfaire Town Center: 2,258 vacation rentals
  • Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park: 2,136 vacation rentals
  • Cape Fear Museum: 1,995 vacation rentals

But there are many other points of interest around Wilmington listed on HomeAway where you can find your place to stay. Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available near the point of interest of your choice.

Can I rent Houses in Wilmington?

Yes, of course. HomeAway has 954 Houses in Wilmington. Our other popular types of vacation rentals in Wilmington include:

  • Condos/Apartments: 939 rentals available
  • Cottages: 85 rentals available
  • Bungalows: 85 rentals available

But you can also enjoy a great stay in one of our other vacation rentals including Cabins and more.

Can I find a vacation rental with pool in Wilmington?

Yes, you can select your preferred vacation rental with pool among our 824 vacation rentals with pool available in Wilmington. Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

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