Most every evening, visitors and locals alike gather at the end of the NPS parking lot by the Sound to watch the sunset.
Most every evening, visitors and locals alike gather at the end of the NPS parking lot by the Sound to watch the sunset.

We hope you enjoy your visit to our beautiful island.  As you will see, it’s different from most shore points. 
Here are some tips to make your visit safe and enjoyable:

  • The speed limit is 20 mph. “Village-wide” means ALL streets. Please drive slowly at all times.
  • The village streets are narrow and shared with animals, pedestrians, bicycles, skateboarders and golf carts, all of which may suddenly lurch to avoid a puddle.
  • If you are walking in the dark, take a flashlight so you can see and be seen.
  • If you ride a bicycle at night, use a bright light. Drivers: Be aware. Many bicyclists do not ride with a night light and can, unfortunately, be difficult to see. Being without streetlights, the village is darker than most places at night.
  • Walk left; bike right.
  • Never, ever pass anyone or anything on the right.
  • Learn and heed the traffic laws for golf carts.
  • Know your street name and house number if you are staying at a cottage and should need emergency assistance.
  • Please pick up after your animals. Hyde County has an animal feces removal ordinance. While there is no leash law, there is an ordinance against “vicious” dogs.
  • Please DO NOT FEED THE WILD DUCKS. Ocracoke is trying to control them, and when humans feed them, they will not disperse to forage naturally.
  • Ocracoke cares about how the island looks and we recycle. Glass and metal recyclables (separated) can be taken to the Hyde County Convenience Site beside the post office.
  • Driving on the beach and dirt roads within the National Seashore requires a permit that can be purchased at the NPS Visitor Center.
  • Public restrooms are at the NPS Visitor Center and the lifeguard beach. There also is a porta-potty in Community Square. Some shops have restrooms for customers.
  • Please remember to tip your servers. Our restaurant workers have about six months to earn a living.
  • Fireworks of any kind are prohibited on Ocracoke.
  • Want to see more of the Milky Way? Please turn out unnecessary outside lights at night.
  • An official Lost-&-Found Box is now at the Hyde County Sheriff’s Dept. on Hwy. 12.
  • If you are staying at a cottage, know your street name and house number should you need emergency assistance.
  • Rip currents (not sharks) are the most dangerous thing at the beach. To view a NOAA video about them, click here.

For more information about the village, visit


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