North Carolina State Parks

mountain stream running through the woods in a state park in north carolina

Stone Mountain State Park

Welcome to the main page for North Carolina State Parks. This page is designed to provide information related to the many state parks located in the state of North Carolina. Below you will a list of all the state parks in North Carolina along with the address of the parks. Click on the links below for the individual state parks where you can find detailed information specific to that park.

The State of North Carolina Park Quick Facts:
33 State Parks | 8 National Wildlife Refuges | 4 National Forests | 2 State Forests | 2 National Historic Sites | 2 National Seashores | 1 State Fish Hatchery | 1 National Park | 1 National Memorial
So many beautiful resources in one State; Priceless

North Carolina State Parks Adventures

Camping in North Carolina State Parks

From the incredible waters of the coast, through the Piedmont region, and to the mountains in the west, there’s no shortage of stunning camping spots in North Carolina. If you like camping, North Carolina is a great place.

Lake Norman State Park is a favorite among residents, offering a tranquil and beautiful atmosphere that can’t be found anywhere else. The park features 33 campground sites, all of which are equipped with tent pads, picnic tables, and grills. Additionally, a community building with kitchen facilities and restrooms may also be availed of by guests. For a rustic experience with modern amenities, this park is your best bet! Follow our camping checklist when you pack so you don’t miss anything like the best backpacking hatchet.

On the other hand, there are over 90 sites at Stone Mountain State Park. Some feature utility hook-ups for those who prefer camping with an RV or a travel trailer, however, primitive sites are also offered for those into “roughing it.” With plenty of rock climbing opportunities and recreational activities, this park is perfect for outdoorsy and adventurous guests.

Another crowd favorite, Hanging Rock State Park features 73 campground sites and five primitive spots. The breathtaking views from the top of Hanging Rock and Moore’s Knob are unmatched.

Those who prefer camping in cabins will definitely love Carolina Beach State Park, which offers four camper cabins for rent along with their 83 other traditional camping spots. Sites here are secluded, nestled among the park’s lush forests and with beautiful views of the coast.

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Hiking in North Carolina State Parks

Six hiking trails can be found at Chimney Rock State Park, all of which takes hikers through some of the best views of North Carolina’s natural landscapes. One of the routes here leads to Hickory Nut Falls, a cascading wonder that plunges 404 feet. You might find it familiar too – after all, it was used as background in the 1991 film, The Last of the Mohicans, starring Daniel Day-Lewis.

Linville Gorge North Carolina

At Stone Mountain State Park, there are over 18 miles of hiking trails that meander through forests full of towering oak, hickory, and pine trees. Some of them also go over and around a massive granite dome that rises nearly 600 feet. However, those looking for a more leisurely and relaxed hike would do well to take the routes that explore the park’s historical sites, which include a log cabin and a blacksmith shop.

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Fishing in North Carolina State Parks

The 8,938-acre Lake Waccamaw at Lake Waccamaw State Park is an angler’s paradise, boasting of large populations of white perch, chain pickerel, and other game fish. The lake’s southern shoreline is also a popular fishing spot with waters shallow enough that anglers can easily wade through the grass beds, fishing with fly rods or cane poles to catch panfish and bass. A 375-foot swimming and fishing pier with a gazebo can also be used by guests for their wade-fishing adventures.

At Merchants Millpond State Park in Gates County, the 760-acre Merchants Millpond is flocked to by anglers from all over the country. This is one of the best places in North Carolina for fishing with plenty of opportunities to reel in black crappie, bluegill sunfish, and more. Besides the lake, guests can also fish at the catwalks over Bennett’s Creek where they can either lure in bass or catch crappie using live minnows and jigs.

Geocaching in North Carolina State Parks

State parks in North Carolina have strict policies and regulations regarding geocaching with each park supervisor making their own decisions for their own property. However, parks that are known to be receptive to geocaching are Eno River State Park, Goose Creek State Park, Merchants Millpond State Park, and Medoc Mountain State Park. Be advised, though, that some of these require a special use permit, as well as fees, from guests wishing to take part in geocaching.

Day Use Areas in North Carolina State Parks

Eno River State Park has a multitude of picnic sites situated within its approximately 4,000-acre sanctuary. Keep an eye out for the beavers, river otters, whitetail deer, and mink that have made their homes here.

At Merchants Millpond State Park, take your meal amid an enchanted forest of bald cypress trees and Spanish moss. For nature lovers looking for the perfect picnic spot, this park is perfect for you.

Those looking for a quiet picnic along a slow and peaceful river would do well to check out New River State Park. The river is considered to be one of the oldest rivers in North America, flowing on its present course since before the Appalachian Mountains were formed. Its placid waters are great for a relaxing afternoon.

If you’re feeling more adventurous, then head over to Morrow Mountain State Park, which offers picnic sites atop Morrow Mountain. Another picnic ground is situated near the pool, making it a great resting spot after an exhausting day of hiking or fishing.

Biking in North Carolina State Parks

With beautiful outdoor scenery and challenging terrain, cycling trails are in abundance in North Carolina. A whopping 8.4 miles of mountain biking routes are found at Hanging Rock State Park, which feature natural obstacles that are perfect for riders looking to test their skills.


Meanwhile, over 30.5 miles of single-track trails are offered by Lake Norman State Park. The park also features the easy and kid-friendly Dragonfly Trail for beginners looking to get into the sport.

A diverse set of trails can also be found at Lake James State Park. Here, over 25 miles of trails vary from the short and educational Holy Discovery Trail that features child-friendly activities, to the more challenging Overmountain Victory Trail, which will take riders through some of the rougher terrain found in North Carolina.

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Boating in North Carolina State Parks

North Carolina has a ton of incredible boating spots perfect for a fun day out on the water. However, Carolina Beach State Park, Hammocks Beach State Park, Lake James State Park, and Lake Norman State park also offer ramps, marinas, and other such amenities to take your boating excursion to the next level.

Bird Watching in North Carolina State Parks

Chimney Rock State Park has over a hundred different bird species within its diverse habitats for bird watching. Noted for its 315-foot-high spire that rises above Lake Lure and a valley, the park offers plenty of opportunities to observe the Hooded Warbler, the American Redstart, the Scarlet Tanager, and more. Grab your binoculars and head out for a day of birding.


Beaches in North Carolina State Parks

The 12-acre lake situated within Hanging Rock State Park is a favorite swimming hole among residents of North Carolina. The lake’s alpine quality makes its waters feel even cooler, making it the perfect spot to beat the summer heat.

The manmade 11-acre lake found at Cliffs of the Neuse State Park is surrounded by a sandy beach, perfect for your beach umbrella and a ring of towering hardwoods. The park offers an alpine escape and is a favorite destination for families during Memorial Day and Labor Day. The park also features a concession stand and a bathhouse.

Cliffs of the Neuse State Park from North Carolina State Parks on Vimeo.

Jones Lake boasts of mysterious, tea-colored water that makes guests feel as if they’ve entered an eerie subterranean world. Situated within Jones Lake State Park, this swimming hole is a must-try for all those visiting North Carolina!

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Rock Climbing in North Carolina State Parks

With the Outer Banks to the east and the Appalachian Mountains to the west, North Carolina provides outdoor enthusiasts with a wide range of climbing opportunities. At Chimney Rock State Park, climbers love taking on the towering Rumbling Bald, which features an equal mix of traditional and bouldering routes. This spot is ideal for those looking for an easy climb, as well as modern amenities.

Stone Mountain State Park offers perhaps the most challenging routes in North Carolina. Featuring sparse protection and long runouts, this site should only be for the most skilled and the most experienced of climbers. This iconic climb is best done during the winter when humidity is low and the rock is at its stickiest.

Those who are still learning the basics of outdoor climbing would do well to visit Pilot Mountain State Park, which features easier grades and a wide range of top-rope options. Those looking to practice slab routes and overhanging jug-hauls may also do so here.

Moore’s Wall at Hanging Rock State Park is another iconic climb, perfect for adventurous traditional climbers and boulderers who are after a variety of options. Adventurous descents filled with few rappel stations and the need to supplement fixed gear are to be expected.

Caving in North Carolina State Parks

Caving enthusiasts should definitely stop by Tory’s Den, situated within Hanging Rock State Park. Allegedly used by the Tories as a hideout during the American Revolution, the cave is extremely dark so be sure to charge your flashlights!

Museums in North Carolina State Parks

History enthusiasts should undoubtedly stop by Dismal Swamp State Park, which features a rich cultural history intertwined with George Washington, the Underground Railroad, and Prohibition.

Fort Macon State Park is also a must-visit for those looking to learn more about the country’s history. The park is centered on a restored pre-Civil War fort and offers daily guided tours, as well as cannon and musket demonstrations. Exhibits that educate guests on the fort’s history and that of its surroundings can also be found here.

Orienteering in North Carolina State Parks

Crowders Mountain State Park offers a permanent orienteering course. Participants can choose to mix and match its controls and order to fit their desired level of difficulty.

Complete North Carolina State Park List and Addresses

Here is a complete list of all the state parks in North Carolina along with the address for each park. Enjoy all that North Carolina has to offer for outdoor actives and natural beauty.

Cape Hatteras State Park

1401 National Park Drive Manteo NC 27954

Cliffs of the Neuse State Park

240 Park Entrance Rd Seven Springs NC 28578

Crowders Mountain State Park

522 Park Office Ln Kings Mountain NC 28086

Daniel Boone State Park

3552 Boones Cave Rd Lexington NC 27295

Dismal Swamp State Park

2294 US-17 South Mills NC 27976

Duke Powder State Park

759 State Park Rd Troutman NC 28166

Elk Knob State Park

9549 5564 Meat Camp Rd Todd NC 28684

Eno River State Park

6101 Cole Mill Rd Durham NC 27705

Falls Lake State Park

13300 Creedmoor Rd Wake Forest NC 27587

Fort Macon State Park

2303 E Fort Macon Rd Atlantic Beach NC 28512

Goose Creek State Park

2190 Camp Leach Rd Washington NC 27889

Hammocks Beach State Park

1572 Hammock Beach Rd Swansboro NC 28584

Hanging Rock State Park

1790 Hanging Rock Park Rd Danbury NC 27016

Jockeys Ridge State Park

300 W Carolista Dr Nags Head NC 27959

Jones Lake State Park

4117 NC-242 Elizabethtown NC 28337

Lake Waccamaw State Park

1866 State Park Drive Lake Waccamaw NC 28450

Merchants Millpond State Park

9100 176 Mill Pond Rd Gatesville NC 27938

Morrow Mountain State Park

49104 Morrow Mountain Rd Albemarle NC 28001

Mount Jefferson State Park

State Park Road 8448 1481 Mt Jefferson Rd West Jefferson NC 28694

Mount Mitchell State Park

2388 NC-128 Burnsville NC 28714

Pettigrew State Park

2252 Lake Shore Rd Creswell NC 27928

Pilot Mountain State Park

1792 Pilot Knob Park Rd Pinnacle NC 27043

Raven Rock State Park

3009 Raven Rock Rd Lillington NC 27546

Singletary Lake State Park

6707 NC-53 Kelly NC 28448

Stone Mountain State Park

3042 Frank Pkwy Roaring Gap NC 28668

Town Creek Indian Mound State Park

509 Town Creek Mound Rd Mt Gilead NC 27306

William B Umstead State Park

8801 Glenwood Ave Raleigh NC 27617

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