The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners continues to be paramount. At Assateague Island National Seashore, our operational approach will be to examine each facility function and service provided to ensure those operations comply with current public health guidance and will be regularly monitored. We continue to work closely with the NPS Office of Public Health using CDC guidance to ensure public and workspaces are safe and clean for visitors, employees, partners, and volunteers.
While these areas are accessible for visitors to enjoy, a return to full operations will continue to be phased and services may be limited. When recreating, the public should follow local area health orders, maximize physical distance from each other, avoid crowding in all areas and practice Leave No Trace principles.
As the NPS monitors and responds to the COVID-19 pandemic, we work closely with the NPS Office of Public Health to use the latest science to guide our decision making. Consistent with CDC recommendations, people who are not fully vaccinated must continue to wear masks indoors and in crowded outdoor spaces. All people, regardless of vaccination status, are required to wear a mask on all forms of public transportation and in healthcare settings on DOI lands. Additional details are available at www.nps.gov/coronavirus.
Effective August 2, 2021 - Consistent with CDC guidance regarding areas of substantial or high transmission, visitors to all Assateague Island National Seashore buildings including the Assateague Island Visitor Center, Maryland District Ranger station/ Campground Office and the Toms Cove Visitor Center in Virginia, regardless of vaccination status, are required to wear a mask in the visitor centers and Ranger Station.
The CDC has offered guidance to help people recreating in parks and open spaces prevent the spread of infectious diseases. We will continue to monitor all park functions to ensure that visitors adhere to CDC guidance for mitigating risks associated with the transmission of COVID-19, and take any additional steps necessary to protect public health. Visit NPS Recreate Responsibly for tips to safely enjoy your visit to your national park.
Details and updates on park operations will continue to be posted on our website, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Updates about NPS operations will be posted on www.nps.gov/coronavirus.
BeachesThe beaches in both the Maryland and the Virginia Districts are open for normal recreation activities (swimming, walking, sitting on the beach, etc.) Please observe social distancing guidelines. Outdoor restrooms are open in Maryland and Virginia.
Strong currents may exist. We strongly recommend that visitors recreating in or near the water wear a U.S. Coast Guard approved life jacket. Visit our Beach and Surf Safety page for more information.
Summer 2021 Lifeguard Schedule
Normal hours of operation are 10 am - 5 pm
May 29, 30, 31
June 5, 6, 13, 14
June 19 - September 6: Lifeguards on duty daily
September 7 - October 3: Lifeguards on duty daily
September 7 - October 3: Lifeguards on duty Wednesdays through Sundays. No lifeguards on duty Mondays and Tuesdays.
Oceanside and Bayside campgrounds are open. Visit our camping page for the latest updates on campgrounds.
Ranger Station/Campground Office
Assateague Island Visitor Center (MD District)
Over Sand Vehicle (OSV) Zones
The Maryland (MD) District and Virginia (VA) District OSV Zones are currently open. OSV permits may be purchased at the walk-up OSV sales window at the Ranger Station (MD) and at the Toms Cove Visitor Center (VA). See our OSV page for more information. We appreciate your patience during this time.
Roads and Parking Lots
Parking lots in both MD & VA Districts fill up quickly on summer weekends. Expect a wait if you are coming between the hours of 11 am - 2 pm. Visitors and wildlife use the roads and parking lots. They don't always look both ways before crossing. Reduce speed on roads and in parking lots to protect yourself, other visitors and wildlife.
Maryland District - Parking lots are open.
Last updated: January 10, 2022