The mainland area and hiking trails are open daily. Visitor center and exhibit hall is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Gate hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The restrooms are open and can be accessed through the visitor center or outdoor entrances.
Bear Island is open for day use and camping. Huggins, Dudley’s, and Jones islands are open for day use and accessible by canoe, kayak, or private boat only.
Masks are optional in all park buildings. Those who are unvaccinated or at high-risk are strongly encouraged to wear masks.
September ferry service to Bear Island operates Wednesday through Sunday. There is no ferry service Mondays and Tuesdays.
The ferry is scheduled hourly at the half-hour departing for Bear Island beginning at 9:30 a.m. and hourly at the top of the hour departing from Bear Island, with the last ferry departing the island at 5 p.m. Please see the ferry schedule link for the complete schedule of departure days and times.
Additional Ferry Information:
- Ferry tickets are sold in person on a first-come, first-served basis; there are no reservations for the ferry.
- Tickets can sell out early in the day on weekends. Plan to arrive early in the day to purchase tickets.
- Ticket sales for the next available ferry are cut off 5 minutes before the scheduled departure time.
- Ferry boarding begins 5 to 10 minutes before the departure time at the ferry waiting station.
- The boarding gate will close at the scheduled departure time. If you have not boarded the ferry prior to the gate closing, you will not be allowed to board the ferry.
- Ticket holders who miss their scheduled departure time will need to go to the visitor center to switch the tickets for the next available departure time. There is no priority given to ticket holders who miss the ferry.
- Pets are not permitted on the ferry.
Beachside and soundside campsites are open year-round. Beachside campsites can be accessed by ferry (when operating), canoe, kayak, or private boat. Soundside campsites are accessible only by canoe, kayak, or private boat.
Please see the Reservations page to make a reservation or for additional information. Camping reservations can be made 11 months in advance online and through the call center.
Open fires are not permitted anywhere on Bear Island. Bear Island is trash-free, so please pack out trash and take it with you off the island.
Group campsites A, B, and C are open for organized groups only. Please see the camping page for additional group camp information.
Bear Island Facilities
The Bear Island bathhouse is open daily with restroom facilities and potable (drinkable) water. Please note that there is no access to the bathhouse from the soundside campsites.
The concession stand is closed for the remainder of the 2022 season. Please bring any drinks or snacks with you.
There are no lifeguards on duty for the rest of the 2022 season. Swim at your own risk and use extreme caution as strong currents and rip currents can occur at any time.
Paddling and Boating Information
Kayak launch and paddle trails are open for use.
The five paddle trails are all marked and open for adventure. Huggins Island Loop Trail: 6 miles round trip (difficult); Bear Inlet Trail: 5.6 miles one way (difficult); Bear Island Trail: 2.7 miles one way (moderate); Queen's Creek Trail: 0.7 miles one way (easy); Trout Channel Spur: 0.4 miles, one way (moderate).
Please see the paddle trail map for additional information.
The boat ramp in the maintenance area is open daily for use. There are five parking spaces allocated for trailer parking. You must obtain a permit to utilize the boat ramp — present your annual pass at the visitor center or pay the boat ramp fee ($7). All boaters must check-in at the visitor center.
Please note park vessels and emergency vessels always have priority use of the boat ramp.
Questions can be directed to the park at email@example.com or 910-326-4881.
Media inquiries: Contact Katie Hall, Public Information Officer for the Division of Parks and Recreation at 919-817-3752 or firstname.lastname@example.org.