Southport, N.C.- Everyone loves Southport. It’s hard to find someone who lives in the Cape Fear region who isn’t fond of this Brunswick County town. Even if you have to travel 30 or 45 minutes to get here, this is the place where you go to spend a Saturday morning or Sunday afternoon. It’s worth the drive!
But what about living here?
Southport is a quaint, southern, coastal community with a charming downtown filled with antebellum and Queen Victoria homes- all of which are in walking distances to a number of restaurants and stores.
If it feels like you’re walking around a movie set, there is good reason for that. When Hollywood needs a location for a film, especially one set in a small town by the water, they turn to Southport. Blockbusters like Firestarter, Crimes of The Heart, Weekend at Bernies, Amos and Andrew, Inkwell, I Know What You Did Last Summer, Night Flier, Domestic Disturbance, Summer Catch and A Walk To Remember have all been shot in Southport
What makes the town so special is its location. It sits on the southern coastline of North Carolina, right where the Cape Fear River meets the Atlantic Ocean.
The biggest event of the year is the annual 4th of July Festival which attracts an estimated 50,000 visitors.
JUST THE FACTS
- Southport is the warmest place in the state of North Carolina, with a yearly average temperature of 65.0F. That is similar to that of coastal Georgia or the northern Gulf Coast of Florida than the rest of North Carolina.
- According to the 2020 census the town’s population sits at 3,971 with a total of 1,434 households
- Median annual household income is $187,917
- Average price of a single family home in the first half of 2022 was $463,543
- In 2015 Time Inc named Southport as one of the top 10 happiest seaside towns in America
- Southport has a rich history that dates back to Indigenous people who lived here before the Spanish exploration in the 1500,
- Nearest Beach is located on Oak Island only 12 miles away
- Distance from Southport to Wilmington is 32 miles
- Distance from Southport to Myrtle Beach is 65 miles
MEET THE HOLLEYS
Just For Buyers Realty agents Jason and Kellie Holley are one of the hundreds of people who have chosen to retire in Southport. They relocated to the town in 2021- working with our firm as a client- they joined JFB as agents after closing on their home. They now serve as our southern Brunswick County buyers experts. While they represent buyers in all areas of the Cape Fear region, Southport has a special place in their heart.
“We chose to retire to Southport because of the small town feel and the expansive water views,” said Jason Holley. “Having the river, intercoastal and ocean right here is amazing. Watching container ships come in and out while walking the streets, or at dinner at one of the great restaurants is cool. It just feels surreal at times like you’re a character in book or movie.
There is a saying in Southport that the Holleys are fond of; “Don’t change Southport, let Southport change you.” For Jason and Kellie the town has changed them by slowing things down. They both notice the quiet moments that used to pass them by. “We enjoy the activities, the energy, and water the best,”said Kellie Holley. “You can just watch the people that visit walking the streets if you like, you can eat some great fresh caught seafood, do a water tour or just shop the small town.”
As much as they enjoy the laid back life style, the Holleys warn that in the summer that things really pick up. Tourists start invading and taking over and the Holleys know that type of atmosphere may not be right for everyone. “The town can be really busy with people Thursday –Sunday,” said Jason. “It is a big change from the calm and quiet during the fall and winter months. Even though the town can be busy it really all wraps up at 10pm. It’s like someone flips a switch and the traffic and the crowd instantly go away.
Where to live
- Downtown Southport: Is made up of roughly 35 historic homes built between 1850 and 1930
- St. James Plantation: Is a gated community that is actually an incorporated town. The community offers 81 holes of golf with four clubhouses and restaurants. It also includes a marina with 475 boat slips on the Intracoastal Waterway. Residents also enjoy access to a swimming pool and club house, tennis courts, and many other outdoor recreation activities.
- Arbor Creek: Located just off Hwy 211, five miles from Historic Southport, NC, Arbor Creek offers plenty of options in single family homes, ranging from the coastal cottages to all brick traditional. This delightful subdivision offers a clubhouse with pool, fitness center, and community library.
- Indigo Plantation: The community is located two and half miles from the Southport waterfront. The neighborhood is nestled among trees, natural landscape and surrounded by marshland with sections overlooking the Intercoastal Waterway. Amenities include a clubhouse, outdoor pool, tennis courts, and walking trails. It was originally developed by Bald Head Island Ltd.
- Seaspray Cove: This community sits on the west side of Southport along the Dutchman Creek. It offers a community pool and dock.
- The Landing at Southport: This is one of the premiere developments in Southport. The Landing is a waterfront community overlooking the Intracoastal Waterway near the mouth of the Cape Fear River.
When considering Southport, it depends largely on who you are. If you like the small-town feel and sense of community, Southport seems ideal. With a warmer coastal climate, plus a cost of living that is below the national average, this could be the ideal place to retire. If you’re younger and looking for more hustle and bustle of big city living, Southport may not be the best place to buy.
“If you’re looking to buy in Southport or southern Brunswick County, we would love to show you around and get you acquainted with the area,” said Kellie. “It’s a place that doesn’t take long to realize whether you want to call it home. So if you’re looking to find a home, let us be your first call.”
Click here to see all homes currently for sale in Southport
(JFB would like to thank the city of Southport for providing most of the pictures for this article.)