Jockey's Ridge State Park
Nags Head, North Carolina Photos by Ray Matthews
Park Info
Friends of Jockey's Ridge  
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Park Information

Hours | Facilities | Contact Info | Accessibility | Safety | Seasonal Job Openings

Jockey's Ridge State Park is located in Dare County on the Outer Banks. The entrance to the park, Carolista Drive, is in the town of Nags Head at milepost 12 on the Hwy 158 Bypass (South Croatan Hwy).

Park Website
Park Map & Directions
Park Rules & Regulations
Calendar of Programs

Park Hours

The ridge area closes 15 minutes before the park.

November - February, 8 a.m. - 6 p.m.
March, April, September, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.
October, 8 a.m. - 7 p.m.
May - August, 8 a.m. - 9 p.m.
Closed Christmas Day

Sound Side Access Gate

October-March, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
April-September, 8 a.m. - 7 p.m.

Park Visitor Center Hours

November - February, 9 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
March - October, 9 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.


 · Picnic shelters
 · Visitor Center
 · Museum
 · Auditorium
 · No camping facilities

Contact Information

NC Division of Parks and Recreation
Jockey's Ridge State Park

P.O. Box 592, Nags Head, NC 27959
(252) 441-7132
Program Registration: (252) 441-2588

Friends of Jockey's Ridge State Park
P.O. Box 358
Nags Head, NC 27959
(252) 441-9801

Handicapped Accessibility

The 384-foot boardwalk ends with a spectacular view of Jockey's Ridge. Along the tree-lined walkway are information panels describing the various plants and animals found around the dunes. There is a bench on the overlook for visitors who wish to wait for their families playing on the dunes. Transportation to the top of the dunes may or may not be available until 4:30 PM pending availability of a vehicle and 24-hour prior notice. Please call the park office for further details at (252) 441-7132.

Having a Safe Visit:

Jockey's Ridge State Park is a wonderful place to visit, but like anywhere else, there are a few things to keep in mind. Take a few minutes to review these tips for a fun and safe visit.
  • HOT! HOT! HOT! – The sand on the dunes is incredibly hot during the summer months. On average, the sand will be 25 to 30 degrees hotter than the air temperature, so when it's 95 degrees, the sand will be 125 degrees. Remember this if you feel like going barefoot.
  • GETTING LOST – On occasion, we have families that become separated while playing on the dunes. It's a good idea to locate a landmark everyone is familiar with, and make this your meeting spot. One such place may be the boardwalk overlook. It's visible from a good distance away.
  • LIGHTNING – Weather on the Outer Banks is a bit unpredictable. Lightning storms occur quite often during the summer months, especially in the afternoon. If you're on the dunes and you hear the warning siren, it is indicating a lightning storm is approaching and you need to clear the ridge as soon as possible.
  • TICKS – Having fun in the outdoors means you may have a possible encounter with ticks. It's always smart to do a "tick check" if you've been walking through the thickets in the park.
The Friends of Jockey’s Ridge State Park
Ray Matthews Photos © Ray Matthews