- The seashore is a 55 mile long section of the Outer Banks of North Carolina running from Ocracoke Inlet on the northeast to Beaufort Inlet on the southeast. The three undeveloped barrier islands which make up the seashore - North Core Banks, South Core Banks and Shackleford Banks - may seem barren and isolated but they offer many natural and historical features that can make a visit very rewarding.
Recreation - During the summer months, the lighthouse staff offer interpretive programs. Sightseeing and shell collecting are favorite activities along with fishing, swimming, bird-watching and photography. Camping and lodging are nearby. Bike riding is popular along the North Carolina seashore roads.
Climate - Winter daytime temperatures average above 44 degrees Fahrenheit (7 Celsius). Summer daytime temperatures range above 80 degrees Fahrenheit (27 Celsius). The state has a fairly wet climate with an average precipitation for this area averaging more than 52 inches (132 centimeters).
In summer the coastal areas tend to be warm, humid and buggy. Wear comfortable sportswear with a hat for the sun and good walking shoes that can take the sand and salt water.
Cape Lookout National Seashore's Visitor Center is located on the eastern end of Harkers Island, approximately 20 mi. (30 km) east of Beaufort, NC and 30 mi. (50 km)south of the Cedar Island terminus of the Cedar Island - Ocracoke Ferry.
From Beaufort: Take U.S. 70 east to Harkers Island Road (SR 1332/SR 1335).
From Cedar Island: Take SR 12 south past the Atlantic turnoff to US 70 west. Continue on US 70 to Harkers Island Road (SR1332/SR 1335).
Cape Lookout National Seashore is accessible only through private ferries leaving from Harkers Island, Davis, Atlantic, Beaufort, Morehead City and Ocracoke or your personal boat.
To Park: Ferries leaving from the communities of Harkers Island, Beaufort, Morehead City and Ocracoke, NC carry passengers only. The ferries from Davis and Atlantic, NC can transport passengers and 4-wheel drive vehicles. For additional information call (252)728-2250, 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM ET. After hours a recording will give you a list of the ferry operators.
In Park: mainly by foot; personal 4-wheel drive and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) are allowed subject to State of North Carolina laws. All vehicle operators, ATVs included, must have a valid drivers license in their possession while driving a vehicle in the park; limited privately operated beach shuttle services available during the summer months.