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100-Mile Challenge





Year of the Fish



Our Mission

The North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation exists to inspire all its citizens and visitors through conservation, recreation and education.

Conservation: To conserve and protect representative examples of North Carolina’s natural beauty, ecological features, recreational and cultural resources within the state parks system;

Recreation: To provide and promote safe, healthy and enjoyable outdoor recreational opportunities throughout the state; and 

Education: To provide educational opportunities that promote stewardship of the state’s natural and cultural heritage.  



102 Years of Making Memories

North Carolina state parks offer residents and visitors alike countless unique parks, lakes, rivers and trails located through our beautiful state from its highest peaks to its pristine shorelines.

  • Elk Knob State Park Great American Backyard Campout
  • Hanging Rock State Park Beach Party


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The Flytrap Trail at Carolina Beach State Park is where you can see Venus Flytraps and orchids growing in the wild! The trail crosses pocosin wetlands, longleaf pines, and wiregrass savanna. Only 6 months to get yourself geared up for winter hikes at Haw River State Park ;) There is so much more to Chimney Rock State Park than the Chimney! Go to the bottom or top of Hickory Nut Falls, get beautiful views of the gorge from the Skyline Trail, or climb at Rumbling Bald access. Thunderstorms in the distance viewed from Hanging Rock State Park. Storms can move in quickly, so be safe! Did you know we have these awesome cabins at Carolina Beach and Cliffs of the Neuse state parks? They have A/C...just sayin’. One of many stunning views from atop Elk Knob State Park, where you can look south AND north from the top of the knob. If you haven’t paddled at Merchants Millpond State Park, you are really missing out!  This place is extraordinary. Before or after a nice paddle on the river, take a (clothed) stroll along the Naked Landing Trail at Lumber River State Park. This is the perfect time to visit Mount Jefferson State Natural Area. Hike up to Luther Rock-  it will be one of your favorite places.