It is said that America begins on North Carolina's Outer Banks. Site of the first English colony in the New World – the so-called “Lost Colony” on Roanoke Island – this chain of natural barrier island stretching for 200 miles have marked a number of significant firsts since then. On Kitty Hawk Field at 10.35am on 14 December 1903, Orville Wright - a bicycle maker from Ohio – flew his rather primitive aero plane for 12 seconds and touched down 120ft away, constituting man’s first powered flight. The very spot is marked by a granite pylon and a small museum at the Wright Brothers National Memorial.
The US government sought to protect the fragile coastal environment in the Outer Banks, and created the country's first National Seashore – the Cape Hatteras National Seashore.