I vacationed at Holden Beach with family & friends in June 2013. This was my first visit. When you drive across the bridge and reach the top, the view is breath-taking! There were 11 of us, and we rented an ocean-front beach house. It was very roomy and comfortable. We had our own spot on the beach, not crowded at all. There aren't tons of shops/restaurants, so if you're looking for excitement ...... go somewhere else. But, if you're looking for relaxation, family time, enjoying nature ..... Holden Beach can't be beat! Holden is a great town for biking/walking. Wish I'd had more time to explore the sea turtles and learn more about them. We drove to Wilmington one day, had a great lunch and toured the battleship. We traveled to Myrtle Beach another day for shopping, Ripley's Aquarium, etc. Actually, there are some very neat & unique shops in Holden Beach that I didn't discover until the last evening before we left. Wish I had explored these shops earlier in the week! I will definitely be returning to this awesome little town!!