Thing to Do

Visit The Point at Harpers Ferry

vista where two rivers converge; visible gap in the Blue Ridge Mountain range

"The passage of the Patowmac through the Blue Ridge is perhaps one of the most stupendous scenes in Nature. You stand on a very high point of land. On your right comes up the Shenandoah, having ranged along the foot of the mountain a hundred miles to seek a vent. On your left approaches the Patowmac in quest of a passage also. In the moment of their junction they rush together against the mountain, rend it asunder and pass off to the sea."
-Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia, 1785
Self-Guided Tours - Walking

Leashed pets are allowed at The Point. Please visit our Pets page to learn more about visiting Harpers Ferry National Historical Park with your pets. 

Entrance Fees for Harpers Ferry NHP
Park passes may be purchased at the Cavalier Heights Entrance Station near the park's Visitor Center, Bolivar Heights, Maryland Heights, Harpers Ferry Train Station, and River Access Parking Lot. Credit cards are accepted only at the Entrance Station. Passes may also be purchased online.

Vehicle Pass - $20.00 per single, private vehicle (excludes group tours and 7+ passenger vans - visit the Group Fees and Reservations page for more information).
Motorcycle Pass - $15.00

Individual Pass - $10.00 per person arriving on foot or bicycle

Harpers Ferry Annual Pass - $35.00 - valid for one year from month of purchase for Harpers Ferry NHP only. Admits pass-holder and passengers in a single, private vehicle (excluding groups) or immediate family if entering by other means. Nontransferable. Can be purchased at the Cavalier Heights Entrance Station near the Visitor Center.

Year Round
Time of Day
Day, Dawn, Dusk
Accessibility Information

The Point is accessible to all visitors though the current gravel path may pose some problems to those with physical limitations.

The Lower Town area of Harpers Ferry does have some uneven and textured surfaces. All visitors should watch their footing while exploring the town.

Appalachian National Scenic Trail, Harpers Ferry National Historical Park

Visit where the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers meet! From this location, known as The Point, you look upon three states - Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia - as well as the confluence of the two rivers. We invite you to visit in any season to gaze upon the magnificent sight of this water gap in the Blue Ridge Mountains.

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This May 2016 (sped up 20x) video shows the view at The Point as the morning light emerges during a cloudy, slightly rainy day.

Getting to The Point
To access The Point from the Lower Town shuttle bus stop, walk along the sidewalks of Shenandoah Street toward the buildings. When you reach the end of Shenandoah Street, turn right, walk past John Brown's Fort, and continue along the gravel path up the slight incline. Once you can see the rivers, you have arrived at The Point.

History of The Point
When the Wager family, heirs to Robert Harper, sold land to the government for the Armory in 1796, one of the two parcels of land they retained was the "Ferry Lot Reservation" (the other tract was the "Six-Acre Reservation" which comprised the heart of the Lower Town). The ¾-acre "Ferry Lot Reservation" sat at the confluence of the Potomac and Shenandoah rivers, and became a bustling commercial area as the town of Harpers Ferry grew.

A major contributor to the prosperity of the "Ferry Lot Reservation" was the completion in 1836 of the B&O Railroad viaduct across the Potomac River. By 1859, structures at The Point included The Gault House Saloon, the Wager House Hotel, the Potomac Restaurant, and several other small shops and businesses. The B&O Railroad and Winchester & Potomac Railroad also maintained passenger depots here.

But the prosperity of the "Ferry Lot" ended with the Civil War. On June 14, 1861, Confederate troops blew up the B&O Railroad bridge. Eight months later, on February 7, 1862, Union troops burned all the buildings on The Point to prevent Confederate sharpshooters from using them for cover.

During the course of the Civil War, the railroad bridge was destroyed and replaced nine times. After 1862, the B&O Railroad began erecting new iron spans designed by Wendell Bollman. By 1870, this "Bollman Bridge" was completed. Bollman’s iron spans carried the B&O mainline until 1894, and continued to serve as a highway bridge into the present century. Floodwaters in 1924 swept away three iron spans, but these were promptly replaced. Twelve years later the record Flood of 1936 destroyed this bridge for good.

Last updated: August 25, 2021