Temporary Burn Ban in effect
Cape Lookout National Seashore will comply with the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources temporary ban on all open burning in North Carolina.
The ban on open burning is necessary because of the dry weather conditions and an increase in wildland fire activity throughout North Carolina.
Effective Thursday December 2, 2021, all beach fires are temporarily banned on Cape Lookout National Seashore beaches until the ban is lifted. The use of grills for cooking is still permitted. Caution should be exercised while cooking outdoors and lit materials should be confined to the grill apparatus. Visitors are asked to dispose of used charcoal and any smoking materials, such as cigar or cigarette butts, carefully and away from any combustible materials.
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 in areas of substantial or high community transmission, all federal employees, onsite contractors, and visitors, regardless of vaccination status, are required to wear a mask inside of Federal buildings. This includes the Beaufort Visitor Information Center, Harkers Island Visitor Center, Light Station Visitor Center, Keepers' Quarters Museum, Great Island cabin office and the Portsmouth Visitor Center. Also included in the federal building listings are the bathhouses at Great Island and Long Point and other restroom facilities. Face Masks are required in all NPS buildings and facilities. We are fortunate to have plenty of open beaches where you can spread out and not have to wear a mask while fishing, shelling, swimming, camping and other beach activities.
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.
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 and Harkers Island OPEN -- weather dependent
Winter passenger ferry schedule service (3 ferries per day) begins November 29, 2021 through March 4, 2022.
Vehicle ferry services -- OPEN
Check with the individual ferry service for operation schedules
Visitor Centers - facemask wear required regardless of vaccination status
Harkers Island Visitor Center OPEN Visitor Center Store OPEN
Holiday hours: Thanksgiving Day Closed; Christmas Day Closed; New Years Day Closed
Winter hours beginning December 12, 2021: Closed on Sundays through March 20, 2022. Returns to 7 days a week schedule beginning 3/27/2022
Light Station Visitor Center OPEN Visitor Center Store OPEN (through December -- then closing for season until 3/11/2022)
Keepers' Quarters Museum CLOSED (through 3/11/2022)
Beaufort Visitor Information Center OPEN (closing for season as of Sunday, 12/12/2021 - Thursday, 3/31/2022, Reopens Friday 4/1/2022)
Portsmouth Village Visitor Center CLOSED
Cape Lookout Lighthouse
Closed until further notice
Restrooms - facemask wear required regardless of vaccination status
Harkers Island Shell Point restrooms OPEN
Shackleford Banks restrooms OPEN -- facemasks not required for these - single stall only
Light Station (Lighthouse Area) --
- soundside dock area restrooms OPEN
- oceanside pedestrian beach restrooms OPEN
Back road restrooms near the point of Cape Lookout OPEN
Barrier island restroom status over the winter -- watch the weather: if temperatures are consistently below freezing for a period of time, restrooms will be winterized.
Great Island Cabin Camp -- South Core Banks
Cabin office CLOSED
Ice sales CLOSED
Gas sales CLOSED
Bath house OPEN - facemask wear required regardless of vaccination status
ORV dump station OPEN
Long Point Cabin Camp -- North Core Banks
Closed for the 2021 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, do not use for drinking
facemask wear required in the bath house regardless of vaccination status.
ORV dump station OPEN
Shell Point, Harkers Island
Nature trail OPEN (only during daylight hours)
Restrooms OPEN - facemask wear required regardless of vaccination status