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The weather forecast for July 18, in Ocean City, Maryland is:

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The Beach and Beyond

Explore more along the Eastern Shore! The untouched natural beauty of Assateague Island, the endless outdoor activities and the allure of our historic towns make visiting the beach and beyond well worth the trip.

Assateague Island

Just a few miles south of Ocean City, sits Assateague Island. This barrier island, which fronts the Atlantic, is separated from the mainland by Sinepuxtant Bay, and from Ocean City by the inlet– which was carved out naturally during the infamous 1933 storm. The island is divided into two sections, Assateague State Park and Assateague National Seashore.

Assateague is home to the famous herd of wild ponies, as well as lots of other wildlife. Yhe island is covered in sand dunes, pine forests and salt marshes. Miles of beaches (37 between both the Maryland and Virginia side) are perfect for endless hours in the sun and surf– some areas are even dog friendly, and the National Seashore offers off-road, drive-on access(passes are required). Take a walk with an Assateague ranger who will reveal tales of Assateague’s past– a lesser-know fact, the island was once as much as a mile further out in the ocean! The rangers can also help your kids find evidence of residents who may not always be seen, like the ghost crab!

Be sure to stop by the state of the are Barrier Island Visitor Center before entering the island, visit the touch tank and aquarium, browse through exhibits and maps, and become familar with everything this natual paradise has to offer.

Camping
The National Park offers two campgrounds, Oceanside and Bayside, with some sites available in the summer. There are also several backpack and canoe-access campsites. Parking and back country permits are required. Assateague State Park offers camping April-October. A small camp store and snack bar are open in the summer.

Hiking
Short, self-guided walks are available on Assateague Island including Life of the Marsh, Life of the Forest and Life of the Dunes trails. Each is approximately one half mile and has parking facilities. Life of the Marsh and Life of the Forest trails are accessible.

Biking
Cyclists can use three miles of paved bike paths along Bayberry Drive and Oceanside Campground. Summer bike rentals are available at the end of Bayside Drive.

Paddling
Canoe and kayak rentals are available at teh end of Bayside Drive. The trails through the Sinepuxent Bay and small cuts offer easy access for wildlife viewing.

Fishing
Surf fishing is available. A saltwater fishing license is required. Fishing is prohibited on lifeguarded beaches or in designated surfing zones.

Off-Road Vehicle Use
ORV zones are posted and maps are available at the Barrier Island Visitor Center. Permits are available at the Ranger Station. A fee is charged for all permits. ORVs must stay on marked oversand vehicle routes.

Picnicking
Picnic areas are available at the state park beach, the National Park North Ocean Beach and at the Bayside Recreation Area. Picnic tables and grills are available at these sites.

Swimming
Assateague Island National Park Service and Assateague State Park lifeguards supervise the beaches during the summer season.

Kids Programs
Assateague offers environmental education programs and day camps during the summer months such as bayside kayak tours, beach scavenger hunts, biological beach combs, salt marsh exploration and junior ranger programs. Check at the Barrier Island Visitor Center for program descriptions and schedules at the National Park or call 410-641-2120, ext. 20 at the State Park.

Pets
Dogs on leash are permitted in the National Park year round. At the State Park, dogs are allowed in marina area to board Vessels, in camp loop J and adjoining Beach and are allowed in day use areas from October 1st to April 30th.

Assateague Island National Seashore
National Seashore Ln.
410-610-3030 | 800-365-2267
Visitor Center at 410-641-1441
www.NPS.gov/ASIS

Assateague State Park
Rt. 611, Berlin
410-641-2120 | 888-432-CAMP
www.DNR.State.MD.US