Croatan National Forest

Area Status: Open
This area is Open

Croatan beach

Welcome to the Croatan National Forest, one of four National Forests in North Carolina and the only true coastal forest in the East.  The Croatan National Forest's 160,000 acres have pine forests, saltwater estuaries, bogs and raised swamps called pocosins.  Bordered on three sides by tidal rivers and the Bogue Sound, the forest is defined by water.

All this water provides a variety of recreation and diversity of wildlife- from deer, black bears and turkeys to wading birds, ospreys and alligators.  Canoeing and fishing are popular on blackwater creeks and saltwater marshes.  The Croatan is also home to the carnivorous Venus fly-trap, sunder and pitcherplant. 

The Croatan National Forest has one Ranger District, the Croatan Ranger District.  Please contact the District for more information.

Camping and Day-use Information

Enjoy camping or a picnic at one of the many day-use areas. A list of camping and day-use areas in the Croatan National Forest can be found here.

Recreation Maps

Croatan National Forest Maps

Be Safe

The national forests in North Carolina offer a wide variety of outdoor recreation opportunities. From the mountains to the sea, there are many exciting adventures awaiting your visit to these national forests. Please keep in mind that all outdoor recreational activities on the Croatan, Pisgah, Nantahala and Uwharrie national forests, including activities at recreation sites, have inherent risks due to the natural setting in which they occur. Always remember, your safety is your responsibility.

At a Glance

Operational Hours: Distict office hours: Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Reservations: Some activities require reservations. For campsite resevations, please visit or call 877-444-6777
Fees Some activities require fees

General Information


The Croatan's district office is about 10 miles south of New Bern off US 70.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information



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Camping & Cabins

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Horse Riding & Camping

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Nature Viewing

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OHV Riding & Camping

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Outdoor Learning

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Scenic Driving

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Water Activities

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