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Corolla ( ) is an unincorporated community located in Poplar Branchmarker township, Currituck Countymarker, North Carolinamarker along the northern Outer Banksmarker. It has a permanent population of approximately 500 people, however the population surges into the thousands during the summer vacation season. Corolla is home to the Currituck Beach Lighthousemarker, one of the seven North Carolina coastal lighthouses.

Corolla is home to about 119 feral Banker horses. They are located on a 12,000 acre (49 km²) animal sanctuary situated north of the populated areas of Corolla. The Corolla Wild Horse Fund is a public charity whose mission is to protect and preserve the herd.


Many outsiders erroneously pronounce Corolla the same as they pronounce the name of the car, the Toyota Corolla, where the second syllable sounds like roe (Kuh-ROE-Luh, /kəˈroʊlə/). However, residents pronounce the second syllable like all (Kuh-RAH-Luh, /kəˈrɔːlə/).


The community of Corolla began as a European development on American Indian hunting grounds. Tribes including the Chowanog and Poteskeet hunted along the barrier reef.

The town of Corolla began as a community known as Jones Hill. It was also known as Whalehead or Currituck Beach. Early settlers made a living from fishing and hunting as well as from salvage from shipwrecks and service as guides to hunters. Construction of the Currituck Beach Lighthousemarker resulted in a stabilization of the economy with a new influx of jobs. Currituck was derived from an American Indian term, Carotank, meaning land of the wild geese. The area, due to it being on the Atlantic flyway, had at the time a large wild geese population until overhunting in the late 1800s caused numbers to severely drop.

The town officially took the name Corolla in 1895 when a post office opened in the community. The name was chosen to refer to the botanic term for the petals of a flower.
Development of Currituck's Northern Outer Banks began in 1967 when investors from Sandbridge, Virginia, put together an investment group to purchase the undeveloped land. The first subdivision plotted was Carovamarker with 1,993 lots. The lots were originally priced at $11,500; as of 2006, some of these lots are worth up to $500,000.

The investors planned for a road to come through from Virginia Beach, Virginiamarker, to allow access to the lots, however these plans were abandoned in 1973 when the Back Bay National Wildlife Refugemarker south of Sandbridge was closed to all vehicular traffic, except by permit. Development pushed south through the 1970s, creating well over 1,000 additional lots in several subdivisions. In 1984 the residents of Corolla succeeded in their attempts to gain a public access road from the south and the state began paving the extension of NC-12 towards the north.


  1. Map of Currituck @

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