It is no secret among those of us who live here on the coast. There are two special places that people come to the Crystal Coast to visit. The better known spot is the beach with its waves and hot sands. Then there are people who come to the coast just to enjoy Bogue Sound. Some never even make it to the beach. In fact if you counted the number of residents living year round on the sound and compared that number to the number of people living year round on the ocean, my guess is that the sound would win. There are number of reasons why people love the sound and the lifestyle that it brings. Perhaps the number one reason is that you can have a boat, kayak, or small sailboat. Having easily accessible water transportation leads to lots of fun on the water. Of course there are a number of other reasons to love the sound.Perhaps the other top reason for loving the sound is that life just seems a little more relaxed on the sound. The breezes are usually a little lighter, the sound of the waves is in the distance, and the pace of life just a little slower along the shores of the sound. As I watch people gather for the sunsets, I wonder how much more relaxed can you get than enjoying your favorite beverage and watching a Bogue Sound sunset?
Being over on the sound side does not remove all weather challenges by any means. However, you can often count on the sound not being as rough as the ocean. Usually the winds are tempered somewhat though that depends a lot on the direction of the winds.
Certainly the sound is usually a more protected spot during a Nor'easter, but you can have sound side flooding under the right conditions.
I believe part of the attraction of living on the sound is that the neighborhoods are very quiet and usually have lots of trees. If you live on the beach, there are several months out of the year when lots of people are going to be walking by your home. If you love people watching, it is great.
If you are looking for more seclusion, there are few beaches on the sound. It just makes soundfront homes more private.
Another attraction of the sound is boat traffic. It is rare day when boats are not visible on Bogue Sound. With the Intracoastal in the distance, there is almost always some boat traffic to enjoy.
Another plus for some people is that it is also easier on the sound side to get a more traditional yard for children and gardeners to enjoy. It is not unusual to see significant landscaping around soundfront homes.
I am most envious of the folks sitting on their docks and just watching the waters of Bogue Sound. It is a great way to relax and maybe even fish a little.
The average soundfront property usually has a spot where you can easily launch a kayak. Going kayaking becomes something very spontaneous. Instead of having to haul the kayak over the dunes and across the beach, you just slide it into the water. There is no boat launch easier. Also there is nothing more beautiful than a Bogue Sound sunset from a kayak.
Finally for those looking for one last reason people enjoy the Bogue Sound side of the island, the streets are often shaded by trees which makes them much more attractive for evening walks during our warm summer months. The trees end up being protection from wind and sun.
So the next time you think Crystal Coast, you might want to consider renting a home along the sound. It is certainly an unique experience.
Of course if you cannot make up your mind, there are places you can be soundfront and only third row from the beach. You likely will not get those shaded streets in an area of the island that narrow, but you certainly will have views of both the sound and the ocean.
It can end up being the best of both worlds.