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Carolina Beach State Park

Flytrap Trail
Carolina Beach State Park is a 761-acre state park near Carolina Beach, 10 miles south of Wilmington on Pleasure Island in New Hanover County.  Pleasure Island is a small island formed by the dredging of Snow's Cut in the 1920s to provide passage between the Atlantic Ocean and Masonboro Sound.

The area was originally inhabited by Cape Fear Indians prior to their defeat by European settlers in the early 18th century.  The area grew in importance as the Cape Fear River was a major port of entry to the colonies and played a role in the US Civil War as confederate soldiers used the sugarloaf dune as a lookout to protect the Port of Wilmington.  The state park was established in 1969 to preserve the unique environment found here.  Specifically, the park is home to a large population of carnivorous plants, including the rare Venus Flytrap.

Contact Information:

1010 State Park Road
PO Box 475
Carolina Beach, NC 28428

(910) 458-8206 (Park office)
(910) 458-7770 (Marina)

Email: carolina.beach@ncdenr.gov

GPS Coordinates: 34.04730, -77.90661


From I-40 east, the interstate will become NC-132 continuing through Wilmington.  NC-132 joins NC-421 and crosses the Snow's Cut Bridge across the Intercoastal Waterway.  At the second stoplight, turn right onto Dow Road and follow the signs to the park's entrance, which will be on the right.


Carnivorous Plants:

Carolina Beach State Park is home to a number of carnivorous plants, including the Venus Flytrap (Dionaea muscipula) that is only native to an area within a 60-mile radius of Wilmington.  The "mouths" are actually modified leaves with trigger hairs that sense the presence of an insect and snap shut on their prey.

Another species of carnivorous plant native to the park is the yellow pitcher plant (Sarracenia flava).  These plants attract insects to their pitcher, where they fall into digestive fluids to provide nitrogen in the nutrient-poor soil.

Blog Entries:

External Links:

NC State Parks website: https://www.ncparks.gov/carolina-beach-state-park