Metal Detect on Emerald Island

Metal Detecting on Emerald Isle, NC (Maps Where to Go)

Emerald Isle is among the most beautiful beaches in North Carolina. Emerald Isle is a perfect place to visit for vacations, boasting brilliant waters, fine sand, and a stretching coastline. But apart from relaxing by the beach, I found another excellent activity in this paradise – metal detecting.

Let me share my favorite beaches to metal detect in Emerald Isle. I will also tackle the regulations that metal detector enthusiasts should follow when exploring the area.

Can You Metal Detect on Emerald Isle?

The state of North Carolina permits metal detecting on Emerald Isle. However, beach owners and managers may have different rules regarding the activity. It is ideal to ask permission before metal detecting to ensure you are not violating any laws.

Beach Metal Detecting
Beach Metal Detecting

Where to Metal Detect on Emerald Isle

Emerald Isle has multiple public beaches that you can visit. They are easily accessible and convenient, making them a popular tourist destination. The beaches’ pristine sand has a lot of potential finds to offer for metal detector enthusiasts. Each beach has excellent amenities to accommodate you after your metal-detecting activity is over.

So, if you plan to visit North Carolina, below are some of the best beaches to metal detect on Emerald Isle.

πŸ‘‰Hey David here the guy behind this website. Check Out My Favorite Metal Detecting Equipment Below πŸ‘ Recommended

Nokta Ultra
Nokta Simplex ULTRA πŸ‘ˆ Awesome Machine!

When asked what I recommend, the πŸ‘‰ Nokta Simplex Ultra stands out. Perfect for beginners, it’s waterproof, includes wireless headphones, and offers five functional modes, growing with your detecting skills.

Lesche T Handle Shovel picture
Lesche T Handle Shovel digs through everything

The next thing you need is a great shovel, believe me when I say you’ll dig more knowing you can dig FASTER. The nearly bullet proof Lesche T- Handle Shovel is the most comfortable heavy duty shovel I’ve ever used.

I love the CKG Sand Scoop for Beach Metal Detecting
I love the CKG Sand Scoop for Beach Metal Detecting

Metal Detecting and Beaches are a perfect match. To search a beach you’ve GOT TO HAVE A SAND SCOOP. CKG Sand Scoops are heavy duty and able to be used as a shovel.

Minelab Equinox 800 amazing Metal Detector
Minelab Equinox 800 amazing metal detector

If it’s time up UP YOUR GAME , get the industry standard metal detector. The Minelab Equinox 800 IS THE BEST. Okay it’s not cheap, but your finds are going to increase with this machine.

1. Indian Beach – Convenient Parking

Indian Beach sits between Atlantic Beach and Emerald Isle. It offers various activities you can do after exploring the beach and digging for treasures. The activities include paddle boarding, fishing, and surfing. This beach also has 36 parking spaces, so you can easily find a spot for your vehicle.

However, it would be best if you were cautious when metal detecting. The reason is that Indian Beach has dedicated areas for turtle nesting, which you need to avoid disturbing. But once you know the nesting spots, you can metal detect the entire 2-mile beach. (source)

Google Map Link:

2. The Point – Offers Great Activities

It would be best if you never missed the activities offered by Emerald Isle other than metal detecting. And if you want to experience beach life after treasure hunting by the waters, then The Point is the best beach to visit. Apart from its great sand that makes it the best beach to metal detect on Emerald Isle, there are activities you cannot do on other beaches.

For instance, you can try beach driving while looking for an excellent spot to metal detect. But make sure you acquire a permit from the town before participating in the activity. After exploring some good treasure-hunting areas, you can lay on the sand and rest while watching the beach’s blue-green waters. (source)

Google Map Link:

3. Eastern Ocean Regional Access (EORA) – Pet Friendly

Suppose you are looking for a pet-friendly place to metal detect on Emerald Isle. In that case, the Eastern Ocean Regional Access is an ideal location. You can bring your pet and let them help you dig whenever you have potential finds. However, it is worth noting that the beach access point has a “pooper scooper” rule, meaning you must clean up after your pet. Apart from beach access, AEORA also has 167 parking spaces with handicapped access.

If you are planning to stay on the beach for an entire day, EORA has restrooms and shower rooms that you can access. There are also grills and a picnic pavilion, so you can bring your family and spend the day treasure hunting. There are also lifeguards around the area, so you will have someone to ask regarding metal detecting regulations in the area. (source)

Google Map Link:

4. Bogue Inlet Pier – Excellent Fishing Area

Bogue Inlet Pier is a famous landmark among Emerald Isle tourists. It was a fishing pier run by a family for more than 40 years. It is now a viewing deck and an excellent location for anglers who flock to Emerald Isle when the fishing conditions are good.

The sand around the pier is an excellent location for metal detecting. Since many people visit the area during fishing season, chances are you will find coins and trinkets left by tourists. After metal detecting, you can watch anglers in action while catching fish. You can also try catching fish yourself and bring your catch home. (source)

Google Map Link:

Treasure Hunting in North Carolina
Looking for Treasure in NC? Check out this article πŸ‘‰ Treasure Hunting in North Carolina

Laws and Rules for Metal Detecting on Emerald Isle, NC?

Metal detecting on Emerald Isle and other North Carolina beaches is legal. However, there may be local ordinances on the beach you are visiting. So, asking whoever is in charge in your area about their metal detecting rules before starting your activity is essential.

Moreover, North Carolina does not have a universal law encompassing metal detecting on beaches like Emerald Isle. It is up to the local government whether or not they will allow metal detecting on the beaches they govern.

Some may also ask you to acquire written permission beforehand. It is another scenario that shows you need to ask beach managers permission before metal detection on Emerald Isle.

What do You Need For Beach Metal Detecting?

I’m going to provide an ESSENTIAL beach gear list. Everyone wants to enjoy beach time and dragging a pile of gear to the beach sucks.

  • A great multi-frequency metal detector. Different metals react to different frequencies. Having a machine that utilizes multiple frequencies at the same time will greatly improve finding gold and coins. The Best Value is the Nokta Makro Legend check prices and reviews on Amazon with this shortcut link πŸ‘‰ Nokta Makro Legend
  • A great pinpointer, I’m an absolute believer in wireless tech. For years I would get tangled in my headphone wires. GO WIRELESS the Nokta PulseDive links to the Legend’s wireless headphones. Since it’s built for diving, it’s Heavy Duty. Short cut link to Amazon – Nokta Makro PulseDive
  • Get a heavy duty sand scoop, I’ve bought the cheap plastic and metal scoops – NOT GOOD. They usually break within a day. 2+ years later I’m still hammering on my CKG Metal Detecting Sand Scoop πŸ‘ˆ Link to Amazon

Can I Keep All the Treasures I Will Find?

You can keep all the treasures you will find while metal detecting on Emerald Isle beaches. However, there is an exception – objects believed to be 100 years of age or more. The Archaeological Resources Protection Act (ARPA) protects items of such period. It designates them as items of heritage and cultural value.

Metal Detecting Tip: After years of swinging my machine, I’ve come to realize find treasure is cool, but also having a conservation ethic is better. If you read just a little bit about the 1906 Antiquities Act you understand the idea of perseveration and conservation. Here’s a link. πŸ‘‰ Antiquities Act U.S. Department of Interior

Suppose you happen to excavate an object that you believe has a cultural value. In that case, you need to call the authorities and report what you found. This way, archeologists can examine your find and verify its value.

On the other hand, modern items like coins in general circulation, pieces of jewelry, and other trinkets are legal to keep. However, some beaches may require you to report anything you find while metal detecting. This way, they can ensure that no one is looking for the item before you take it home. (source)

Do You Need a Permit to Metal Detect on Emerald Isle, NC?

North Carolina beaches, including Emerald Isle, are not subject to any metal detecting law set by the government. For this reason, you may or may not need a permit depending on where Emerald Isle beach you are.

Digging up metal detecting treasure on a beach
Digging up metal detecting treasure on a beach

Some beaches require you to present a written permit before you head out. In contrast, others will let you do your activity as long as you are not disturbing other tourists. Other beaches may also prohibit you from metal detecting. Prohibition is often the case, especially if there are a lot of tourists at the time of your visit or they have bird nesting areas they need to protect.

But whether you need a written permit or not, you must observe the proper metal detecting etiquette. Emerald Isle requires all metal detector enthusiasts to cover the holes they dug if they are more than 12 inches deep.

Even if the holes you dug are shallow, it is better to cover them after metal detecting to keep the pristine look of the beach. In addition, you need to ensure that you are not destroying sand dunes and sea turtle nesting areas. (source)

Can I Rent a Metal Detector in Emerald Isle, NC?

Acquiring a metal detector on Emerald Isle is easy, as you may find several businesses that allow you to rent one. So, if you cannot bring your metal detector when you visit the beach, you can call a rental service to reserve one ahead of time. This way, you will have your equipment ready once you get to the beach.

Moreover, whether the beaches in Emerald Isle itself offer metal detector rental is not specific. For this reason, it is ideal to call the beach where you plan to stay. Do so beforehand and ask them if there is any business within the vicinity that offers metal detectors for rent. If there is none, Newport Metal Detectors is an excellent rental option if you plan to metal detect on Emerald Isle.

Metal Detecting Tip: I’ve compiled a huge list of places to rent metal detectors. Check out this article πŸ‘‰ Where to Rent Metal Detectors

Located 9.13 miles from Emerald Isle, Newport Metal Detectors allows you to rent a metal detector from one day up to an entire week. The shop also has metal-detecting accessories, including shovels, headphones, and pinpointers. If you plan to purchase a new device, Newport Metal Detectors also have some for sale. (source)

One Last Swing of the Metal Detector

Metal detecting on Emerald Isle is one of the best beach activities you can do at the beach. Fortunately, it is legal to metal detect on North Carolina beaches. However, you must ask beach managers for permission before you conduct your activity. The reason is that there are no general beach metal detecting rules in the state.

For that reason, it is up to the beach owners what regulations they want to implement for metal detecting enthusiasts. The beaches on Emerald Isle have incredible amenities, so you will enjoy your stay as much as you enjoy treasure hunting.

Our comment box is open if you have questions, comments, or suggestions! Simply drop your message there so we can interact!

David Humphries, Writer and Creator of METAL DETECTING TIPS. After borrowing my son’s detector and finding $.25. I felt like a treasure hunter. FREE MONEY! I was seriously bitten by the metal detecting bug.


  1. Crystal Coast, NC. Indian Beach. Accessed September 27, 2022.
  2. The Swim Guide. Emerald Isle – Inlet Drive (C10B). Accessed September 27, 2022.
  3. Emerald Isle, NC. Eastern Ocean Regional Access – EORA. Accessed September 27, 2022.
  4. Crystal Coast, NC. Bogue Inlet Fishing Pier. Accessed September 27, 2022.
  5. Metal Detecting Hobby Talk. National Parks, Monuments, Seashores, Forests, and Public Property. Accessed September 28, 2022.
  6. Newport Metal Detectors. Metal Detector Rentals. Accessed September 28, 2022.
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