• Miles of uncrowded white sandy beaches extend to the horizon, separating the clear blue ocean and undulating grass-covered dunes.

    Fire Island

    National Seashore New York

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  • Pet Restrictions in Effect March 15 through Labor Day

    Dogs/other pets (except for service animals) are not allowed in the wilderness or on any of Fire Island's federally owned oceanfront beaches from March 15 through Labor Day to help protect threatened and endangered beach-nesting shorebirds. More »

  • Backcountry Camping Permit and Access Procedures

    Reservations for required permits must be obtained through www.recreation.gov. Due to the breach at Old Inlet, access to both east and west wilderness camping zones must now be from Watch Hill or points west, and involve a 1½ to 8 mile hike. More »

  • Attention Watch Hill Ferry Passengers

    Due to channel conditions, delay or cancellation of ferry service between Patchogue and Watch Hill may occur. For updated ferry schedule information, please call 631-475-1665.

Celebrate the Chilly Season at Fire Island National Seashore

 A winter bird walk on the beach

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News Release Date: November 22, 2013
Contact: Kathy Krause, 631-687-4772

What better way to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the holiday season than to get outdoors for some sunshine and fresh air, even if it there is a chill in the air. A variety of ranger-guided hikes and other programs are available this fall and winter at Fire Island National Seashore. For a complete listing of events and programs, see the online Calendar of Events. A few upcoming programs are highlighted below.

The Fire Island Wilderness Visitor Center, which is located at the southernmost end of William Floyd Parkway, is hosting several programs from late November through New Year's Day.

  • Wednesday, January 1, 10 am - 1 pm: New Year's Day Beach to Breach Hike. Celebrate the New Year on Fire Island with this 3-mile ranger-led hike to the breach at Old Inlet and back.

Special programs at the Fire Island Lighthouse this holiday season include an annual tree-trimming event, a reenactment of the 1953 flying Santa visit, and several other walks and tours.

  • Sunday, December 8, 11 am - 1 pm: Winter Birding for Beginners. Meet at the Fresnel Lens Building for some bird watching basics. For all ages.
  • Saturday, December 14, 11:30 am - 12:30 pm: 11th Annual Reenactment of the Flying Santa visit to the Fire Island Lighthouse in 1953.
  • Wednesday, January 1, 2014, 10 am - 11am: New Year's Day Hike to the Lighthouse.  Meet at Robert Moses Sate Park, Field #5 and celebrate the New Year with the Fire Island Lighthouse Preservation Society. Reservations required: 631-661-4876.

The William Floyd Estate has closed for the 2013 season, but guided nature walks and cultural history grounds tours are expected to begin in early 2014.

Fire Island Lighthouse Holiday Decorations
The traditional tree inside the Fire Island Lighthouse Keepers Quarters Museum is decorated with handmade nautical ornaments reflective of the nearby sea, nature and the lighthouse.

Did You Know?

Crowd of people form a line at ferry terminal building.

The Patchogue-Watch Hill Ferry Terminal is a short, 2-block walk from the Long Island Railroad Station in Patchogue, New York. From there, you can enjoy a delightful 25-minute passenger ferry trip across the Great South Bay to the facilties at Watch Hill. (Open mid-May to mid-October only.) More...