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Kayaking at Hammocks Beach State Park
Status of Park Facilities as of January 24, 2022   

Visitor center, exhibit hall, trails, mainland restrooms, and the boat ramp are open daily.  Masks are required in all park buildings.

2022 Annual passes are available at the visitor center for $90.  Good for up to 6 ferry tickets or boat ramp use per day.

Beachside campsites 1-10 are CLOSED through March 12, 2022, due to beach erosion from a recent storm. Campsite 11 along the beach side and sound side campsites 12-14 remain open but can ONLY be reached through the kayak trail access on the sound side of Bear Island. Campers must bring all necessities with them including drinking water. Please see the Reservations page to make a reservation.  Please note open fires are not permitted anywhere on Bear Island.
Ferry service is CLOSED for the season and will resume in April 2022. 

The Bear Island bathhouse with restroom facilities is CLOSED and winterized until Mid-March 2022.  There is no potable (drinkable) water and no restrooms on Bear Island. 

Beachside campsites will be CLOSED during “King Tide Events”, May 15 – 19, 2022; June 12 – 15, 2022; and July 11 – 15, 2022. 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.

The concession stand is CLOSED and will re-open along with lifeguards on duty Memorial Day weekend.  Please swim at your own risk and use extreme caution as rip currents and strong currents can occur at any time.

Visitor center hours:  8am – 5pm, Gate Hours 8am – 6pm. 

 Last updated on: Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Map of North Carolina

Contact the park



Visitor center

1572 Hammock Beach Road
Swansboro, NC 28584

GPS: 34.6710, -77.1429



  • 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






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.


Find and book a campsite or facility online

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

Notices and alerts

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 2022, king tide campsite closures will occur on: May 15 to 19, June 12 to 15, and July 11 to 15.


Status of park facilities

Prior to your visit, please visit the Hammocks Beach Facility Update for more information on ferry service, camping, and more.

View the 2022 ferry schedule »


Current weather

28584 Swansboro, NC





Upcoming Events:

Saturday, January 29, 2022 - 9:30am
Saturday, January 29, 2022 - 1:00pm
Saturday, February 5, 2022 - 10:00am

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.