Assateague Island Beach Information
Assateague Island is a national seashore managed by the National Park Service. A portion of Assateague Island is also a national wildlife refuge, Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge , which is managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Department. There is an entry fee to get onto Assateague Island. You can purchase a weekly pass (seven consecutive days) for $10, or an annual pass for $15. You can also access the park with Federal Duck Stamps, Golden Age, Golden Eagle and Golden Access Passports.
The CNW Refuge is open all year. Hours of operation are: From May through September, the refuge is open from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. From November to April, the refuge is open 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. The months of April and October, the refuge is open from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Within the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge, there is a new visitor's center, The H. Bateman Center. There are planned activities for all ages including a Jr. Birder and Jr. Ranger program. In addition, there are biking and hiking trails and a vehicular trail (loop) that opens at 3:00 p.m. every day.
The Assateague Lighthouse, located across from the Bateman Center, is open for tours on weekends. Tours are conducted by Chincoteague Natural History Association members from March through Thanksgiving weekend. Tour times are Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 9 to 3. Fee: Adults $4 and Children (2-12) $2.
In addition to managing our beach area, the National Park Service offers a variety of programs for visitors. The Jr. Ranger Program is a structured program for children ages 6-14. There is also a Mini-Ranger program for ages 4-5. You can sign up for these programs at the Tom's Cove Visitors Center out on the beach. There is also a "touch" aquarium at the visitors center. Listed below are several on-line brochures from the NPS that you can download.
Horse Brochure Bird Checklist Plan Your Visit Seabeach Amaranth
Over Sand Vehicle (OSV) Use Life of the Dunes trail guide Life of the Forest trail guide
Life of the Marsh trail guide
There are restroom and shower facilities (showers available only during summer) out on the beach. There is a protected portion of beach with lifeguards on duty (again only during the summer season). In addition, there are beach areas for surfing and fishing. There is an over-sand area; a permit is required.
Assateague Island offers a great beach experience for the vacationing family. For the fisherman, swimmers & surfers, you'll like the ocean beaches. The younger kids will enjoy the calm waters of Tom's Cove, a protected bay just a short walk from the parking areas. It's a great place to explore!
There's plenty of beach area for playing and there's miles and miles of undisturbed beach if you want to walk and comb the beach! Come and enjoy our beautiful beaches!!
Disclaimer: we have tried our best to provide accurate information. All information provide is subject to change, errors and omissions.