[St. Marys, GA] – Following guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state and local public health authorities, Cumberland Island National Seashore is increasing recreational access to the island. The National Park Service (NPS) is working service-wide with federal, state, and local public health authorities to closely monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and using a phased approach to increase access on a park-by-park basis.
Beginning Friday June 26th, Cumberland Island National Seashore will reopen access to:
- Ferry service at 2/3 capacity; (concession operation requires all passengers wear face coverings at all times aboard the ferry, see www.cumberlandislandferry.com for more information.)
- Bicycle and cart rentals; (concession operation)
- Mainland Visitor Center with capacity limits;
- Mainland Visitor Center restrooms;
- Sea Camp Ranger Station with capacity limits;
- Ice House Museum with capacity limits;
- Limited public programming at Sea Camp Ranger Station with capacity limits;
- Commercial Use Authorizations with appropriate mitigation;
- Special Use Permits as appropriate to phase of re-opening.
Beginning Monday July 6th
, access to the following will be opening:
- Camping at full capacity at Sea Camp, including group sites, Stafford Beach, and all three wilderness areas- Hickory Hill, Yankee Paradise, and Brick Hill Bluff.
While these areas are accessible for visitors to enjoy, a return to full operations will continue to be phased and services may be limited. Modifications to operations will be flexible, continually evaluated and adjusted as necessary to ensure public health and safety.
With public health in mind, the following facilities remain closed
during this phase:
- Lands and Legacies Tours; (concession operation)
- Plum Orchard Mansion historic home tours;
- Mainland Museum;
- On-site and/or in-classroom education programming.
The health and safety of our visitors, employees, volunteers, and partners continues to be paramount. At Cumberland 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.
When recreating, the public should follow local area health orders like those found at Camden County Emergency Management, Glynn County Emergency Management, Charlton County Emergency Management, Nassau County Emergency Management,
and Duval County Emergency Management;
practice Leave No Trace
principles, avoid crowding and avoid high-risk outdoor activities.
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.
We ask visitors to be our partner in adopting social distancing practices, follow the 10 Essentials
for a safe visit, and if you are sick, stay home. We encourage visitors to recreate responsibly
and pack essential items like water, face coverings and hand sanitizer. Check the park’s website and social media platform, for updates as operations are changing regularly, https://www.nps.gov/cuis/planyourvisit/be-ready.htm
“The park is thrilled to be able to provide greater access to Cumberland Island. COVID-19 has challenged our community, country, and world in significant and life altering ways. We hope opening the island to more visitors will help ease some of the associated stress of the current situation,” said Superintendent Gary Ingram.
We have fun and interesting content about Cumberland Island National Seashore all of the time, so for people who are sheltering-in-place, check us out at:
Details and updates on park operations will continue to be posted on our website and social media channels. Updates about NPS operations will be posted on www.nps.gov/coronavirus