Enjoy your Thanksgiving at the Beach! Book Now

logo ×

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Shelly Island is a mile long island and football field size wide off the coastline of the Hatteras Island, NC.

Caleb Regan, an 11-year-old boy named it Shelly Island because there were shells scattered everywhere.

The island has attracted national and international media as well as visitors.

Locals have seen islands appear and disappear but this one, in particular, grew fast since its discovery in April 2017.

Two powerful currents collided there, the Gulf Stream from the Caribbean flowing quickly north, and the Labrador Current from the Arctic pushing south.

The currents collide, churning surf and sand at Diamond Shoals, creating a cluster of shifting underwater sandbars off the coast of Cape Hatteras.

Shelly Island belongs to the state of North Carolina, under the jurisdiction of Dare County.

However, adding to the island’s allure is the fact that ownership could change overnight.

If it were to connect with the land, it’s possible that it becomes part of Cape Hatteras National Seashore and management of it would be different. Right now, a few hundred feet of water is between the park service property and the island.

Let’s hope that nobody starts building properties so we can all enjoy and learn from this natural beauty.