Assateague Island is a 37 mile long island along the coasts of Maryland and Virginia. Most of the Maryland district is managed by the National Park Service as Assateague Island National Seashore. The State of Maryland manages two miles of the Maryland district as Assateague State Park. The Virginia district is managed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service as Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. The National Park Service operates the Toms Cove Visitor Center and a recreational beach within the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. For additional details, download Planning Your Visit.
Assateague Island National Seashore is open year-round. Chincoteague National Wildife Refuge hours change seasonally. There is no vehicle access between the two districts on Assateague Island. Vehicles must return to the mainland to access either the north or south entrance. View the park map for the recommended driving route.
Summers at Assateague are generally hot and humid. Mosquitoes, biting flies, gnats and ticks are abundant from spring through autumn. Insect repellent and/or protective clothing is recommended. It rarely snows in the winter but it is often cold, damp and windy. Sturdy hiking shoes are recommended for long walks in the sand and hard soled water shoes/sandals or for wading in bay waters.
Avoid Dehydration - #FindYourWater
Rules & Regulations
Our Superintendent's Compendium is a good place to start for designations, closures, permit requirements and other restrictions imposed under discretionary authority. (pdf file, 2.7 Mb)
Visit our Laws & Policies page for regulations on personal watercraft and firearms in the park.
Last updated: February 29, 2020