Nicholas Sparks' The Last Song Tour

See the Nicholas Sparks' The Last Song Tour map

The Nicholas Sparks Walking Tour, part of the Special Collections and University Archives North Carolina Literary Map, pertains to specific sites in the proximity of Wilmington, North Carolina. Sparks, famous for his best-selling romance novels, always features North Carolina locations in his work. This walking tour, in particular, focuses on the sites and locations featured in Spark’s novel The Last Song. The story takes place primarily in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, extending into cities such as Wilmington and other adjacent coastal regions. Participants of the tour, regardless of whether they partake in it virtually or on foot, will learn of several locations imperative to the overall story Sparks weaves in The Last Song. The landscapes that the character Ronnie witnesses, the sites at which key characters undergo salient transformations, and the locations in which seminal plot points transpire can be experienced when visiting the identified sites on the map. The Nicholas Sparks Walking Tour aspires to serve fans of Spark’s literature, individuals with an affinity for Wrightsville Beach, and/or cultural tourists interested in learning more about the literary heritage of North Carolina.

Place Description

Wrightsville Beach is a coastal town, east of Wilmington, North Carolina, in New Hanover County. Geographically, the town consists of multiple islands: a beach island approximately four miles long and an interior one called Harbor Island. Part of the town is also located on the mainland. Wrightsville Beach is advertised as a coastal town retaining a village-like sense of removal from the world, as well as being North Carolina’s most accessible beach from interstate I-40.[1] The town draws a large number of tourists during the summer months who enjoy the beach’s renowned watersports, blue waters, white sand and surf, the waterfowl sanctuary, and the Johnny Mercer Pier.[2] Hurricane Hazel, the only documented Category 4 hurricane to directly hit North Carolina’s coast, impacted the town greatly, ultimately shaping its future. On October 15, 1954, at high tide (and with a full moon already affecting tidal movements), Hurricane Hazel hit Wrightsville Beach and wreaked havoc on homes and properties. Around 200 houses were destroyed and approximately 500 were damaged.[3] However, the 1960s marked the revitalization of the town as homes and properties were rebuilt.

  • [1] http://www.visitwrightsvillebeachnc.com/About-the-Area/
  • [2] http://www.visitwrightsvillebeachnc.com/About-the-Area/
  • [3] http://wbmuseumofhistory.com/get-involved/our-history/