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Enjoy A Getaway to Secluded Beaches at Cape Lookout

Explore undeveloped islands along the Atlantic Coast when you plan an adventure to Cape Lookout National Seashore. Start your day at the Harkers Island Visitor Center, where you can watch a film about the park, hike on short nature trails, and see exhibits explaining the park’s history. Then it’s time to take one of the short passenger ferry rides to one of the islands – take your choice from three main islands: Long Point, Great Island, and Shackleford Banks.

Shackleford is nine miles long and sports a large maritime forest as well as a herd of wild horses. Here you can surf and walk the exposed shoreline. Great Island is the landing spot for several passenger ferries – on the south end you can visit the historic Cape Lookout Lighthouse and explore an old coast guard station. The island stretches miles to the north and has sandy beaches fronting the ocean and marshy tidelands facing the mainland. Other ferries head to Long Point and Portsmouth, a historic village home to a charming Methodist church and a historic life-saving station. Remember to bring everything you may need, including water, bug spray, and food.