Island Express Ferry Service, Beaufort

#1 of 23 in Transportation in North Carolina
Other · Ferry
The ONLY Ferry authorized by National Park Service to drop off at Cape Lookout Lighthouse and Shackleford Banks.

Our ferries will take you to Cape Lookout or to Shackleford Banks. Just a quick jaunt to either island--both part of of the Southern Outer Banks, both have pristine beaches, both have crystal clear waters.

Whichever destination you choose, there is so much to do. Take a picnic and relax, swim or fish. Take your kayak! Go shelling, these are some of the best shelling beaches in North Carolina. You can stay the night, camping under the stars, falling asleep to the sounds of the sea.

On Cape Lookout, visit the lighthouse, Our Diamond Lady--she makes us proud! While there, hop on our Beach Shuttle which will take you to the Point. Our COMBO trip is very popular -- Visit Shackleford Banks and Cape Lookout in one day!

On Shackleford Banks, visit with the Wild Banker Horses, they've been roaming the island for centuries...rumor has it they swam ashore from sinking ships!

Wildlife, history, time to connect with nature... just a short ferry ride away.
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Island Express Ferry Service reviews

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983 reviews
  • Best way to get to Shackleford Banks. Easy to make reservations on line for the time we wanted to leave. The crew was professional yet very friendly. Safety was important to them. They drop you off...  more »
  • We took the ferry to the Shackleford Banks. The trip took only about 15 minutes. We spent 4 hours at the banks. The ocean is on one side and the sound on the other. We saw four wild horses. Great...  more »
  • Went on a Sunset cruise to look at some horses. Island was pristine and the boat captain was fun and knowledgeable. Great trip. When you get to the island avid hikers can go through the brush but families with kids can enjoy walking around the beach and collecting shells. Both groups are likely to see some horses. Be warned there's a chance you'll get wet on the boat!
  • The staff was awesome! My youngest was terrified to get on the Ferry and every staff member gave him words of encouragement and because of them we were able to get him on the Ferry. Then the staff on the ferry made for a memorable trip with their knowledge of the area, encouraging words, humor, willingness to get everyone the views that we wanted and so much more. On the trip back my son was loving the ride and now begs to come back! We will be back!
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