Shop Reservations Newsroom

GO TO PARK

Home

Kayaking at Hammocks Beach State Park
Status of Park Facilities as of July 9, 2021.   

Due to an ease in COVID-19 restrictions, FERRY SERVICE to Bear Island has returned to a normal schedule.  From Saturday May 29, 2021, until Monday September 6, 2021, the ferry will operate 7 days a week. Masks are no longer required on board the ferry. Please see the ferry schedule for complete information.

Please Note:  ferry tickets are sold in person on a first come first served basis.  There are no reservations for the ferry.

Bear Island bathhouse restroom facilities are open with potable (drinkable) water.  The concession stand is open for cash only sales daily 10am – 5pm and lifeguards on duty on Friday, Saturday, and Sundays as staffing permits.  Please swim at your own risk and use extreme caution as rip currents and strong currents can occur at any time.

Visitor center, exhibit hall, trails, mainland restrooms, and boat ramp are open daily.  The boat ramp will be closed from 9–10am and 2-3pm for ferry re-fueling as well as Mondays and Tuesdays from 9am – 11am for ferry vessel maintenance.  Masks are not required however visitors are encouraged to wear a mask while in park buildings. 

Bear Island is open for day use and Bear Island beachfront and sound side campsites are open for campers.  Sound side campsites are not accessible by ferry and have no access to the bathhouse.  Sound-side campers must have transportation to the island by canoe, kayak, or private boat and must bring all necessities with them. See the Reservations page to make a reservation.  Please note open fires are not permitted anywhere on Bear Island.

Beachside campsites will be CLOSED during “King Tide Events”, June 22 – 26, 2021; July 21 – 25, 2021; October 6 – 12, 2021; November 3 – 9, 2021, and December 2 – 7, 2021. A king tide occurs when the sun, earth, and moon align, resulting in exceptionally high tides.  Beach erosion from hurricanes and winter storms, reduced the Bear Island primary dune and during king tides, ocean waves will be at the dunes, restricting access to campsites 1-11 for extended periods of time.

Visitor center hours:  8am – 6pm, Gate Hours 8am – 7pm. 

 Last updated on: Friday, July 9, 2021


Map of North Carolina


Contact the park
 

910-326-4881

hammocks.beach@ncparks.gov
 

Address
 

Visitor center

1572 Hammock Beach Road
Swansboro, NC 28584

GPS: 34.6710, -77.1429
 

Hours
 

► 

  • September to May:
    8:00am to 6:00pm
     
  • June to August:
    8:00am to 7:00pm
     
  • Closed Christmas Day
     

► 

  • September to May:

Open daily:
​8:00am to 5:00pm
 

  • June to August:

Open daily:
8:00am to 6:00pm
 

  • Closed Christmas Day
     

Ferry
 

2021 ferry schedule (updated)

Current ferry protocols

 


 

 

 

Hammocks Beach State Park

A crown jewel of the North Carolina coast and Hammocks Beach State Park is Bear Island—a 4-mile-long, undeveloped barrier island accessible by the park’s passenger ferry or private ferry, or by paddling a canoe or kayak. A wide beach between massive dunes and the ocean is interrupted only by primitive campsites and a modest concession/picnic complex. The park’s mainland gateway offers a full-service visitor center and is the launch site for ferry service, canoes or kayaks. Rent or bring your own kayaks, canoes or paddleboards to explore paddling trails leading to marshes, Bear Island or Huggins Island, which is graced with unspoiled maritime forest. Interpretive programs and extensive exhibits teach about park ecology and wildlife including endangered sea turtles and nesting shorebirds.
 


Reservations
 

Find and book a campsite or facility online

Or make your reservation at 1-877-722-6762
 


Notices and alerts
 

Now hiring

Hammocks Beach State Park is currently accepting applications for the following seasonal positions:

 

Camping closures during king tide events

The beachfront campsites, campsites 1 to 11, at Hammocks Beach State Park will be closed during king tide events. A king tide occurs when the sun, earth, and moon align, resulting in exceptionally high tides. Beach erosion from hurricanes and winter storms reduced the Bear Island primary dune, and during king tides, ocean waves will be at the dunes, restricting access to the campsites for extended periods of time. In 2021, king tide campsite closures will occur on: April 26 to 29; May 24 to 28; June 22 to 26; July 21 to 25; October 6 to 12; November 3 to 9; and December 2 to 7.

 

Status of park facilities

Prior to your visit, please visit the Bear Island Current Information page for more information on ferry service, camping, and more.

View the ferry schedule »

 


Current weather
 

28584 Swansboro, NC

 


 

 

 

Upcoming Events:

Tuesday, August 3, 2021 - 8:30am
Wednesday, August 4, 2021 - 12:00pm
Friday, August 6, 2021 - 2:00pm

Latest park news:

Hammocks Beach Facility Update

Click here prior to your visit to Hammocks Beach State Park for the latest information on the ferry and amenities at Bear Island.