Explore Topsail Island
Topsail Island is a 26-mile-long barrier island approximately 25 minutes north of Wilmington and 25 minutes south of Jacksonville. The island is located in both Onslow and Pender counties and consists of three towns, North Topsail Beach, Surf City and Topsail Beach. The three mainland towns of Hampstead, Sneads Ferry and Holly Ridge complete the Greater Topsail Area.
Two bridges allow access onto the island-a swing bridge in Surf City and a high-rise bridge connecting Sneads Ferry to North Topsail Beach. A main road runs parallel to the ocean along the length of the island and changes names depending on which section of the island you are currently in. Side streets running from the ocean to the sound or Intra-Coastal Waterway also provide routes to different parts of the island. There is only one traffic light on the whole island strand.
Topsail's summer population swells up to about 60,000 depending on the time of summer, as compared to the 5,500 year-round residents. The convenient location between the cities of Jacksonville and Wilmington makes Topsail a desirable place to live. Residents here enjoy a relatively inexpensive, quiet lifestyle on the beach, and vacationers enjoy the serenity of this family-orientated destination.
Topsail Island has meant paradise to generations of families for its beautiful, family-friendly beaches and waterways. Topsail Island offers a multitude of attractions that draw people from any walk of life. The historic legacy of the area manifests itself in the museum, pirate heritage, old missile towers, and other structures that speak of days gone by. However, there is little doubt that the proximity to the sea lends a distinct resort quality to this culturally vibrant region.