Sunset Beach

Tiny slice of coastal life with pristine beaches and native birds.

Welcome to Sunset Beach

It’s not hard to guess how Sunset Beach got its name. The beaches are pristine, the views are incredible, and the sunsets are inexpressible. Sunset Beach is the smallest of the coastal Carolina islands; it is also mainland, sharing most of its land mass with Bird Island marshland and Bird Island Reserve for native coastal birds and other marsh wildlife. Sunset Beach homeowners are as proud of the reserve as they are of their beautiful beach views and canal-side homes.

Sunset Beach is part vacation island and part nature reserve, a dynamic that keeps this island wonderfully quiet and relaxing for homebuyers looking for a peaceful escape from the urban hustle.

What to Love

  • Exclusive island homes
  • Pristine beaches and natural beauty
  • Canal neighborhoods with private docks on the waterway
  • Exclusive island just for birds: The Bird Island Reserve
  • Oceanside relaxation and small-town vibe
  • Bird-watching, sport fishing, and water sports

Local Lifestyle

Sunset Beach is one of the most walkable neighborhoods in the state, with welcoming avenues, slow driving, and a preference for canals over roads whenever possible. 

Living on Sunset Beach is about relaxation. Residents and vacationers come here for the quiet atmosphere and access to beautiful natural resources. This is an island without hubbub and hustle; its streets remain peaceful and nature remains undisturbed. If you see a neighbor, they might be on their way to spot a few local birds.

Dining, Entertainment & Shopping

There are few commercial venues on Sunset Beach outside the occasional vacation home rental and quiet seaside resort. However, just across the water on the mainland (or Ocean Isle Beach, the next island community), you’ll find a rich selection of fresh seafood, gourmet restaurants, entertainment venues, and luxuriant golf courses.
Should you choose to leave the island oasis, head across the bridge to a favorite local spot called Fibber McGees. This festive Irish tavern has sunny patio dining, a lively atmosphere, and delicious pub food alongside every manner of traditional drink.

Right next to the bridge to Sunset Beach, you’ll find The Boat Landing Restaurant—a quaint place in peach and teal with fresh seafood and a gorgeous view of the bridge itself. By the Sunset Boulevard roundabout, you’ll find Crabby Oddwaters, whose museum of sea shells is just as impressive as its fresh and artful seafood menu.


Things to Do

What is there to do on Sunset Beach? Grab your towel and favorite beach accessories to enjoy pristine beaches all year, with a slightly higher population of beachgoers during the summer vacation season. 

However, the best year-round activity on Sunset Beach is Bird Island, just next door. The Bird Island Reserve can be reached by taking a long, picturesque walk along the shore of Sunset Beach. Soon, you will find yourself in the natural bird reserve. Bring your camera and a refillable water bottle to stay hydrated during some incredible bird-watching.

You can also reach Bird Island Reserve by boat, taking off perhaps from your own backyard canal pier and circling the island to reach the far shores of Bird Island, where those walking the beach rarely go.


Like the other islands of coastal Carolina, Sunset Beach shares a school district with Brunswick County Schools. Children attend the schools closest to the island by catching the bus or a ride. Parents can choose between public and private schools, including nearby Montessori schools and charter school alternatives. Students may attend:

Work With Us

Island Life Real Estate is invested and committed to helping each of its clients find their dream and discover all island life has to offer.