This will be a community and reader discussion on Hammocks Beach State Park and Bear Island NC in the eastern part of Onslow County near Swansboro, but also a barrier island easily accessible from western Carteret County by boat.
Readers can add information to this article, engage with other readers, and our writers by using the no registration comment form at the bottom of this article. Information we’re interested in hearing about can include data on ferry boats which take people to Bear Island, schedule and cost for the ferry boats, park hours of operation, ranger service information, things to do and see when visiting Hammocks Beach NC, and accessing this Crystal Coast location via private boat.
- This barrier island is only accessible by ferry boat in Swansboro, NC, by private boat, jet ski, kayak, or canoe.
- Bear Island is roughly 2 miles from the Hammocks Beach State Park ferry terminal, and these boats are passenger only.
- This area is roughly 3,500 feet from the point in Emerald Isle which is located in Carteret County.
- This area is roughly 3.73 miles in length, and 2,860 feet in width.
- An extensive networks of marshland and canals sit between the ferry terminal at the state park and the barrier island.
- There are public restrooms on the barrier island.
- Fishing from the beach is allowed with a NC fishing license.
- This area is a popular place to observe coastal wildlife and nature, and to find rare and intact seashells. This area is an extensively visited area for tourist and vacationers, and for locals who want to escape the main beaches.
- This area is under the control of the N.C. State Parks.
Ferry Boats, Schedules, Things To Do And See When Visiting
As a past visitor to this Crystal Coast location, or as a local, please consider using the discussion form at the bottom to answer the following questions.
What is the cost and schedule for the ferry boats from the main terminal to the barrier island? Does the schedule differ depending on the time of year?
Are the public restrooms open 24 hours a day?
Can visitors choose to stay overnight, and is camping allowed on the beach? Can campfires be used overnight?
Other than the beach house where the restrooms are located, are there other shelters the public can use when sudden bad weather develops? Or, do park rangers remove people from the island when pending bad weather is observed?
What types of coastal nature and wildlife is routinely seen in this area? Are there any wild horses which live in this area? What types of seashells are routinely found on park grounds?
What types of fish are routinely caught off the beaches of this area?
If accessing the island by canoe or kayak from either the Swansboro location, or Emerald Isle location, what is the level of difficulty for each?
What are some specific places to see, or things to do in this area of the coast? Would you recommend this as a tourism destination for people visiting Swansboro in Onslow County, or Emerald Isle in Carteret County?
Are park rangers always located on the island at the beach house where the restrooms are located?
What types of recreation and facilities are at the main area within the state park?
Using the form below, what is other information someone planning to visit Bear Island NC or Hammocks Beach State Park should know before heading out to this remote island?