If there is a perfect time, I think it is the end of Nautical Twilight as you cross the the heat of a dune into cool, salt air.
This photograph was made from where Cape Hatteras Lighthouse used to be. The tallest lighthouse in America, the “Big Barberpole” was moved 1/2 half mile in 1998 to prevent the Atlantic from taking it. It was built in 1870 from 1,250,000 bricks fired in Virginia, delivered by sea and hauled by oxen to Buxton. It is 208 feet tall and its light can be seen for 20 miles at sea. There were no pilings underneath it, just heart pine timbers. Modern ships rely on GPS satellites and their own radar for navigation. Still, every 7.5 seconds, Hatteras Light flashes, warning sailors of the treachery of “Diamond Shoals”. If you go there, go well before dawn. Having the beach to yourself is its own reward.