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Rachel Carson Reserve

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Review Highlights
Great day on the beach

Even though it was November we had a fabulous day on Bird Shoals. We were able see the horses... read more

Reviewed November 26, 2018
Raleigh, North Carolina
Bird 🦅 Shoals the most spectacular beach Ever!!

We were so amazed with Bird Shoals, after trying to decide on where we should go to get a glance at... read more

Reviewed August 28, 2018
spout springs
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Traveller Overview
  • Excellent78%
  • Very good20%
  • Average0%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible0%
Travellers talk about
“the reserve”(20 reviews)
“rachel carson”(12 reviews)
“carrot island”(13 reviews)
The Rachel Carson component of the North Carolina Coastal Reserve & National Estuarine Research Reserve is located between the mouths of the Newport and North rivers in southern Carteret County, directly across Taylor's Creek from the historic town...more
101 Pivers Island Rd Ofc, Beaufort, NC 28516-9701
+1 252-838-0883
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Reviews (94)
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All reviews the reserve rachel carson carrot island wild horses local ferry paid off marsh mud horse poop mile hike clams shore birds within feet beautiful beach beaufort waterfront sand dollars boat trip emerald isle
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1 - 10 of 94 reviews
Reviewed November 26, 2018

Even though it was November we had a fabulous day on Bird Shoals. We were able see the horses grazing (and fighting!) dolphins right close to the water's edge, (mama and babies!!!) sun and shells. What a beautiful, unspoiled spot so close to town.

Date of experience: November 2018
Thank PriceKM
Reviewed August 28, 2018

We were so amazed with Bird Shoals, after trying to decide on where we should go to get a glance at the wild horses and have a beautiful private beach we decided on Bird Shoals! We took a local ferry from Beaufort that only took...More

Date of experience: August 2018
Thank DanielB695
Reviewed July 31, 2018

My family and I took a boat trip around the preserve. It's beautiful!! I'm a horse enthusiast and the wild horses were adorable and majestic. If you would like to get pretty close to wild horses and here all about them I would suggest taking...More

Date of experience: April 2018
2  Thank Queen A
Reviewed July 9, 2018

One of the highlights of our trip was being able to watch these beautiful horses graze while we floated along the water way. This is also a wonderful spot to find seashells, conch shells, and sand dollars.

Date of experience: July 2018
Thank Brittany R
Reviewed July 5, 2018

We had a lovely adventure on bird island today! We walked almost to the end, which is about 3 miles. The surf was much more rough there. I would not recommend swimming. We saw a whole herd of the wild horses. There were at least...More

Date of experience: July 2018
Thank 853maryfrancesm
Reviewed May 22, 2018

What a wonderful place to enjoy. You can sit ocean sit or bay side. You can enjoy watching the horse wonder around while your in the water. Sometimes they will come very close to you, as if your not even there.

Date of experience: May 2018
3  Thank Susan H
Reviewed April 29, 2018

On a whim took the ferry out to the Rachel Carson Reserve. This ferry drops you off and picks you back up at your chosen time at your choice of two locations on the island the trails or the 3-mile beach side. My sister and...More

Date of experience: April 2018
6  Thank 22dive
Reviewed April 26, 2018

There is nothing more beautiful than catching a glimpse of these amazingly beautiful Spanish Marsh Ponies! you will be so glad you visited!

Date of experience: April 2018
1  Thank AliciaT1453
Reviewed April 23, 2018

Unspoiled island that is beautiful to hike through the marsh grass or along the water. Horses are beautiful to see.

Date of experience: April 2018
Thank markfarner58
Reviewed April 23, 2018

We took our dinghy across from the Beaufort Docks and landed on the beach. We walked the marked trails, saw a couple of the "ponies" and enjoyed the "interpretive" signposts through the printed guide available at the trail head.

Date of experience: April 2018
1  Thank WJDalton
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Questions & Answers
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May 21, 2018|
Response from markfarner58 | Reviewed this property |
No camping in the reserve.
September 27, 2016|
Response from terrisirig | Reviewed this property |
Hi, We used Island Ferry Adventures, I'm sure you can check their schedules online. When we arrived on the island, yes, walking is the only way to get around. Also, there are trails, but they are very rough and wild, so you... More
Kelly M
March 22, 2016|
Response from BrianAtTheBeach | Reviewed this property |
The horses on Carrot Island and Shackleford Banks are separate herds. There are about 35 of them that are resident all the time on Carrot Island. They are there all year long. When it is colder or the weather is... More