Nags Head Woods Preserve
Welcome to Nags Head Woods Preserve, a protected Outer Banks piece of land owned by the Nature Conservancy. There are over 1110 acres and 5 miles of hiking trails here at this extensive ecological preserve, which protects a remarkable range of unique habitats such as forested dunes, interdune ponds, marshes, and wetlands.
This ecological preserve holds 2 of the largest active sand dunes on the east coast; Run Hill and Jockey's Ridge. These dunes run along the northern and southern borders respectively, the Nags Head Woods Preserve shielded from ocean winds.
There is a strong diversity of plant and animal life within that is unusual for a barrier island, species inside including oaks, hickories, beech trees, and over 100 species of birds. This is actually a very important nesting area for over 50 species, including the wood duck and green heron. There are also animals such as otter and egrets, as well as 15 species of amphibians and 28 species of reptiles. There are also plenty of fish, and even unique floating plant life such as the rare water violet.
Save time to explore the Visitor Center onsite, teaching about the land, the species within, and the area's history as a thriving village community with a gristmill, churches, homes, and more. There is also a fun Nature Conservancy gift shop on-site as well.