Croatan National Forest is located on North Carolina’s eastern coast just up the road from Wilmington. Bordered on three sides by tidal rivers and the Bogue Sound, the forest is defined by water. Although the forest does not have many opportunities for hiking, the area’s best trails are located below. Keep in mind that Croatan National Forest and other local areas were heavily impacted by Hurricane Florence in 2018 and some parts are still closed from damage.
Trailhead Traveler’s Recommended Hikes in Croatan National Forest
- Cedar Point Tideland National Recreation Trail – 1.9 mile loop
- Meanders through the salt marsh and its adjoining forest. On two loop trails, hikers can travel boardwalks and smooth gravel paths.
- Elliot Coues Trail – 3.2 mile loop
- Easy and flat hike with beautiful views of the ocean and sandy dunes that loops around the historic Ft. Macon.
- Neusiok Trail – 22.6 miles one-way
- Part of the 900-mile Mountains-to-Sea Trail that begins in Great Smoky Mountains National Park and ends in Jockey Ridge State Park at the ocean. This section goes more than 20 miles from a sandy beach on the Neuse River to a salt marsh on the Newport River. Portions of the trail are still closed from damage due to Hurricane Florence.
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