While in Carteret County, come discover some of the hidden treasures of our Crystal Coast located on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Relax and enjoy our warm sandy beaches, pristine waters, gentle Atlantic breezes, maritime forests, descendants of shipwrecked mustangs and unparalleled shelling. Come visit one of the few remaining undeveloped coastal barrier island systems in the world. Observe the natural beauty, wind shaped sands and maritime influences on these uninhabited islands. There are no lines and no traffic jams, so enjoy your ride with us and leave the crowded beaches to others.
We begin at 9:00 a.m., weather permitting, seven days a week (in season). Departures are on the top of the hour. You are transported to and unloaded at your choice of one of our unique, uninhabited island locations. Stay a minimum of 1 hour or as many complete hours as you wish. Overnight camping is allowed at Shackleford Banks. Bring necessities including water, snacks and sun block. Chairs, umbrellas and coolers are allowed. Don't forget your swimsuit and towel for swimming. Most small lap dogs are welcome on our boats. Sorry, no large dogs allowed.
Mid-March to early-October: 7 days a week, weather permitting., RESERVATIONS ARE NOT TAKEN SPRING & FALL EXCEPT FOR LARGE ORGANIZED GROUPS!
RESERVATIONS ARE HIGHLY RECOMMENDED JUNE, JULY & AUGUST!
We decided to take this cruise last summer and we were pretty disappointed. We normally take a ferry from Harker's Island over to Cape Lookout and this past year we decided to take the Carrot Island ferry tour. We were really disappointed. We didn't realize that the tour only consisted of a boat ride around the harbor in Beaufort and we even missed the horses. When you take the ferry over to cape lookout you can go over the other island with wild horses and get out to trek the island, which allows for some great up close and personal photo ops with the horses! We definitely will not be using the Carrot Island ferry adventures again.
Sometimes you can see the wild ponies of Carrot Island and Shackelford Banks grazing the shoreline from the Beaufort waterfront, but for a better look and to learn more you’ll want to catch the ferry from Harpoon Willie’s on Orange Street. Not only will you see the ponies, but you can also swim in the crystal-clear waters and hunt for shells along the white, sandy beach.
The Rachel Carson Estuarine Reserve, which spans this chain of islands, offers occasional two-and a-half-hour guided tours, including a Kid’s Island Adventure. These point out various aspects of nature and maritime heritage and are conducted in addition to the ferry trips.