Historic Corolla

Currituck Beach Lighthouse
PO Box 58
1101 Corolla Village Road
Corolla, NC 27927
252. 453.4939 (lighthouse hours)
252.453.8152 (administrative office)
FAX 252.453.8152

The Whalehead Club
PO Box 307/100 Club Way
Corolla, NC 27927
FAX 252.457.0129

Photo by Steve Thomas

About the Destination

Historic Corolla is located on the Northern Outer Banks and includes the Currituck beach Lighthouse and the Whalehead Club, as well as several other historic structures located in the Village of Corolla.

The Currituck Beach Lighthouse and Lighthouse Compound (which includes the Keepers' House, Museum Shop, cisterns, and privies) are located just off Highway 12 in Corolla. The red brick lighthouse is made up of over one million bricks and has 214 steps to the top. The Currituck Beach Lighthouse was the last lighthouse to be built on the North Carolina Coast. The lighthouse is the original structure and towers 163 feet in the air. The beacon still shines from the Lighthouse and has since it was built in 1875. Because the village of Corolla was an isolated community, the keeper's quarters were provided for the keepers and their families. In the past decade the keeper's quarters have been restored.

The Whalehead Club, located just south of the Currituck Lighthouse off NC Hwy. 12, the original boathouse and pedestrian footbridge are on The National Register of Historic places. The Whalehead Club has been called the "Crown Jewel of the Outer Banks." It was built in the 1920's by the wealthy industrialist Edward C. Knight at a construction cost of $400,000 and took over two years to build. In October 1992, this "Crown Jewel" and 28.5 acres of land were purchased by Currituck County. The mansion has cork floors, corduroy walls, copper shingles on the roof and pink tiles on the walls of the kitchen. It is the first home in Corolla to have an elevator, basement and a swimming pool.

The Corolla Chapel, built in 1885, has been restored and services are held on a regular basis held year round. Catholic services are held on Wednesday. The Corolla Schoolhouse was built in 1890. At the time, there was no public school so the children of government employees went to the Government School whose teachers were paid by their parents.

The Corolla Post Office and General Store was built 1884 with addition added in 1908. The building is presently used by O'Brian Builders as an office. The old Post Office boxes, Post Master window, display box and safe are still in the building. The Parker House and Griggs House are examples of early Outer Banks architecture. The homes are located on the same street as the Schoolhouse and the Corolla Chapel and are presently being restored.

The Whalehead Railroad Bridge was built about 1924 and restored in the early 1990's. The nearby Currituck Shooting Club, one of the oldest hunt clubs in the County, was organized in the 1850's.

    Currituck Beach Lighthouse

    Hours of Operation: 10 AM - 6 PM, Easter to Thanksgiving (closes at 5 PM in November)
    Admission Fees: $6 per person. Children 7 and under are free.
    Discounts: Prescheduled school and professional tour groups

About the Facilities
  • Gift shop
  • Picnic facilities
  • Free parking
  • Public restrooms
  • Motorcoach parking
  • Exhibits
  • Historic structures
  • Dining and lodging nearby
  • Handicap Accessibility: Site is partially accessible

    Nearest Major Town/City: Corolla, NC

    For Visitor Information:

    About the Programs

    Major Program Areas: Maritime

    Education Resources:
  • Guided tours
  • Self-guided exhibits
  • School Tour Requirements:
    • Maximum group size: 100
    • Reservations required.
    • $2.00/person.
    • 1 hour tour.
    • One chaperone per ten students recommended.