Protect yourself and others from COVID-19 when visiting parks and recreational facilities
Current Status of Park Operations and Facilities
Following the most recent CDC guidance for areas of Low or Medium community transmission; the use of face masks is now optional within Cape Lookout National Seashore.
People may choose to mask at any time. People with symptoms (even if you think it is a cold), a positive test, or exposure to someone with COVID-19 should wear a mask.
Barrier Islands: South Core Banks, Shackleford Banks, North Core Banks:
South Core Banks OPEN Camping, shelling, fishing allowed. Check directly with the ferry service for their operational schedule. Drinking water availability -- water supply locations at the restrooms near the lighthouse and at the Great Island Cabin camp OPEN from March until November. Visitors should bring their own drinking water supply during the winter months.
Shackleford Banks OPEN Camping by tent, shelling, fishing allowed. Check directly with the ferry service for their operational schedule. Drinking water availability - no locations on the island. Visitors should bring their own supply.
North Core Banks OPEN Camping, shelling, fishing allowed. Check directly with the Vehicle ferry for their operational schedule. Drinking water availability -- no potable water is available on the island. Visitors should bring their own supply.
Passenger ferry service from Beaufort OPEN - weather dependent.
Check directly with the ferry service for daily operational schedule -- Spring/Fall schedule ferries leave once an hour; summer schedule ferries are leaving every 1/2 hour. Some variations to the schedule may occur.
Passenger ferry service from Harkers Island OPEN - weather dependent.
Check directly with the ferry service for daily operational schedule.
NOTE: The lighthouse dock is currently damaged. Temporary repairs have been made to allow the passenger ferry service from Harkers Island to the lighthouse area to deliver its passengers once again on the dock. Wheelchair access to the dock is currently not available. Once a permanent repair to the dock is made, wheelchair access will once again be available.
Vehicle ferry services OPEN until November
Check with the individual ferry service for operation schedules
Harkers Island Visitor Center OPEN Visitor Center Store OPEN
Holiday hours: Thanksgiving Day CLOSED; Christams Eve and Christmas Day CLOSED; New Years Eve and New Years Day CLOSED
Light Station Visitor Center OPEN Visitor Center Store OPEN
Keepers' Quarters Museum OPEN
Beaufort Visitor Information Center OPEN
Portsmouth Village Visitor Center CLOSED
Cape Lookout Lighthouse: Closed until further notice
Harkers Island Shell Point restrooms OPEN
Shackleford Banks restrooms OPEN
Light Station (Lighthouse Area):
- soundside dock area restrooms OPEN until November
- oceanside pedestrian beach restrooms OPEN until November
Back road restrooms near the point of Cape Lookout OPEN until November
Great Island Cabin Camp -- South Core Banks
Cabins OPEN until November
Cabin office OPEN everyday from 8:00am to 3:00pm, weather permiting
Ice sales OPEN everyday from 8:00am to 3:00pm, weather permiting
Gas sales OPEN everyday from 8:00am to 3:00pm, weather permiting
Bath house OPEN
ORV dump station OPEN
Long Point Cabin Camp -- North Core Banks
Closed for the 2023 season due to damage from Hurricane Dorian - no sales of ice or gas
Bath house: restrooms OPEN; shower section OPEN
Note: Water is not potable (drinkable)
ORV dump station OPEN
Shell Point, Harkers Island
Nature trail OPEN (only during daylight hours)