New Backcountry Camping procedures
Reservations for required permits must be obtained through Recreation.gov. Due to the breach at Old Inlet, access to both east and west wilderness camping zones must now be from Davis Park or access points west, and involve a 2½ to 10 mile hike. More »
For Your Safety: Use Caution In and Around the Water
Fire Island National Seashore lifeguards are on duty daily during the summer months at Sailors Haven and Watch Hill. Some of the communities within the boundaries of Fire Island National Seashore have lifeguarded beaches. Designated sections of the beach within Robert Moses State Park and Smith Point County Park are also guarded. Lifeguards adjust the size of the protected swim areas according to the conditions of the day. Swimming is not permitted in fishing areas, marinas, or near boat traffic. Surfing, fishing, and pets are not permitted within the designated swim beach area.
You may swim at most other locations, but be advised that swimming is at your own risk, and you should be respectful of other people's recreational rights. We strongly recommend that you always swim at a guarded beach, where properly trained lifeguards also watch for rip currents, lateral currents, large storm surf, undertow and other hazards in the water. You should never swim alone.
Sea creatures you may encounter include seasonal stinging jellyfish and sea lice, pinching crabs, and occasional schools of fish that can bite, like the bluefish. Shark sightings are very rare, but they do live in the ocean and bay.
Learn More about Rip Currents
Learn More about Water Safety
Wading or Walking
Lifeguards clean the guarded beach on a daily basis during the summer, but debris may wash up or become uncovered during the night.
Remember that no wake is allowed in the marinas.
Did You Know?
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...