Your pets are welcome at Fort Raleigh National Historic Site!

Explore the maritime forest via the park's hiking trails, enjoy breathtaking views of the Roanoke and Croatan Sounds, and discover the mystery of The Lost Colony -- there's always something to do with your furry friend!

Learn the B.A.R.K. principles so you and your pet can have a safe and fun visit whenever you come.
Blue graphic with paw prints explaining the BARK Ranger Princples

B.A.R.K. Principles:

  • Help keep our beaches and park clean by bagging your pet's waste and disposing it in outdoor trashcans. Pet feces can spread diseases to park wildlife, introduce non-native plant seeds, and pollute water sources.
  • Pets must be restrained on a leash of no more than six feet at all times. Unleashed pets may possibly scare other visitors or run up to another pet who is not friendly. Pets can also run away and become lost in an unfamiliar area.
  • Please do not leave your pet unattended or in a car or tied to an object while visiting. Be aware of the heat.
  • Pets can chase and threaten wildlife, scaring bids and other animals away. Please keep your dog at a respectful distance from any animals you may encounter.
  • Pets are prohibited within any resource protection area in the park.
  • Ensure that all pet food is secured to avoid attracting wildlife.
  • Plan ahead and know where you can take your pet. Pets are welcome in all outdoor areas, except designated lifeguarded swim beaches and buildings.
  • Service animals are legally permitted anywhere that visitors can go. A service animal is individually trained to perform a specific task that assists a person with a disability.
Black and white pawprint with cross going through it. Text reads, "Fort Raleigh National Historic Site Official B.A.R.K. Ranger."

Become a B.A.R.K. Ranger!

Do you want your pet to become an official B.A.R.K. Ranger? Here's what you need to do:

1. Pick up a B.A.R.K. Ranger booklet at the Fort Raleigh NHS Visitor Center.

2. Learn the four B.A.R.K. principles.

3. Enjoy a walk, hike, or program with your pet.

4. Return to the Visitor Center to get your official B.A.R.K. Ranger certificate signed and receive a special stamp!

Safety Reminders:

-- Do you have enough water for yourself and your pet?

-- Does your pet have the endurance for the heat?

-- Summer temperatures can make the park's pavement and dry sand EXTREMELY HOT. Pets have sensitive paw pads that can easily be burned by these surfaces. REMEMBER: If it's too hot for your bare feet, it's too hot for theirs!

Things to do with Your Pet:

-- Walk the 0.3.-mile Thomas Hariot loop trail through the island's maritime forest to the sandy shores of Albemarle Sound. Enjoy interpretive signs along the way describing the forest habitat, the Algonquian methods for gathering food, and resources the English found valuable on Roanoke Island.

-- Join a Ranger-led program! Programs are offered spring through October, with expanded offerings from Memorial Day through Labor Day. In the winter, programs are offered as staff are available. All programs are suitable for all ages and are free of charge.

-- Explore the maritime forest along the park's 1.25-mile Freedom Trail that ends with views of the Croatan Sound on the western edge of the park. The trail ends near the location where the Freedmen's Colony and Civil War forts once stood. Return by the trail or use the bike path along Hwy. 64 for a loop back to the Visitor Center of 2.5 miles.

Go on a grand adventure and become a B.A.R.K. Ranger at other
Outer Banks National Parks!

Square color photograph of a dog outside. The brown dogs head and shoulders are visible on the left side of the image as the dog looms close to the camera. The dog is wearing a green collar and a tan straw wide-brimmed park ranger hat.
Bark Ranger Spud says it's a GREAT day to become a B.A.R.K. Ranger!

NPS Photo

Cape Hatteras National Seashore

Wright Brothers National Memorial

Last updated: January 26, 2024

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

Fort Raleigh National Historic Site
1401 National Park Drive

Manteo, NC 27954


252 473-2111

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