State Park


The Dismal Swamp State Park 

(252) 771-6593
2294 US 17 North, South Mills, NC 27976

Dismal Swamp State Park Map

As you cross the canal bridge, swing a left and enter the visitor center through the gazebo and boardwalk that overlook the Dismal Swamp Canal.  Enter the lobby to see the “Web of Life” and “Denizens of the Dismal” displays along with a habitat map of the park.  To the right, is the park office and Friends of Dismal Swamp State Park display and gift shop.  To the left, is the entrance to the exhibit hall and auditorium.  Straight ahead, you will find the restrooms and classroom. The entrance to the exhibit hall is titled “The Changing Face of the Dismal.”  Here, visitors can learn the natural and cultural history of the swamp.  The auditorium is where guest speakers will share their knowledge of the park with visitors.  The class room provides park rangers with a place to do hands-on activities with groups of all ages.  The classroom and auditorium may be reserved for your special activity for a fee.  Contact the park office for more information.

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Dismal Swamp State Park holds the key to many of nature’s best-kept secrets.  Unlock the door to nature’s classroom and watch the mysteries begin to unfold.  Our rangers will guide you on exciting explorations where you’ll uncover fascinating natural surroundings, and make great discoveries about the world in which we live.  Bring our state’s rich natural and cultural heritage alive.  Embark on a learning adventure at the Dismal Swamp and discover the wonders of a nonriverine swamp forest.  Join a regularly scheduled interpretive program.  Contact the park office for your group or class. Hop on your bike or lace up your shoes to enjoy the miles of trails that Dismal Swamp State Park has to offer.  The swamp boardwalk allows visitors to get a feel for the swamp without having to get of the beaten path.  And the platform allows a group to gather, look, listen and learn together.

Take a LOOK at what the Dismal Swamp State Park has to offer.

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The State Park rents mountain bikes, canoes and kayaks for your enjoyment. Access is provided for canoes and kayaks beside the State Park bridge.


The state park, like much of NC, has a varied insect population, so be sure to include some decent bug repellant for your trip.


Merchant Mill Pond State Park

(252) 357-1191
176 Millpond Road, Gatesville, NC 27938-9440

Visitor Center Merchants Millpond L 3312640.12970merchatns_camp_small

An “enchanted forest,” primitive species of fish relatively unchanged over millions of years, towering bald cypress trees with massive trunks, luxuriant growths of Spanish moss?this is Merchants Millpond State Park. Here, coastal pond and southern swamp forest mingle, creating one of North Carolina’s rarest ecological communities. Together with upland forests, these environments create a haven for wildlife and humanity alike.

Along with canoeing, the park also offers canoe camping, backpack camping, family camping, and group outing camping.  If desired, the park has canoes for rent, and fishing often hooks large mouth bass, bluegill, chain pickerel and black crappie.  If you prefer hiking, there are 9 miles of trails, and picnic facilities to round out your visit.

Make an Online Reservation or Call 1-877-722-6762
Merchants Millpond State Park (252) 357-1191