Family Adventure Programs


Bald Head Island is a true nature lover’s paradise, with miles of unspoiled beaches, hiking trails within the maritime forest and tidal creeks meandering through the salt marshes. Join one of the Conservancy’s island naturalists for an up-close look at these ecosystems and the abundant flora and fauna found throughout the island. Each trip provides a unique experience and a wonderful learning opportunity for all ages. Scroll down to see the diverse program offerings, many offered on a year-round basis. We look forward to exploring the island with you and your family! For upcoming education programs, please click on the calendar icon located on the right

To register for 2014 summer education programs, please click HERE

We strive to offer an easy online registration process. If you would like to register over the phone, please call (910) 338-0911.

To view a tutorial on signing up from the comfort of your own home, please click HERE


BHI after dark fox
Bald Head After Dark REGISTER NOW

The island takes on a very different feel as the sun goes down and darkness falls. While many of the island's critters wind down for the night, several others are just gearing up. Join us in the Barrier Island Study Center for a brief presentation on Bald Head's active nightlife - including bats, frogs, toads, alligators, and bioluminescent plankton - before heading out and about on the island to find some of it ourselves! Meet at the Barrier Island Study Center. Participants provide their own transportation. Reservations required.

  • Cost: $15 per person for non-members, $10 per person for BHI Conservancy Members, Free for BHI Conservancy Life Level Members 

NEW! BHI By Bike REGISTER NOW

Bring your bike and join our naturalists on a guided bike tour of BHI's unique habitats, including beautiful beaches, salt marsh, and maritime forest. Meet at Riverside Adventure Company, 14 Marina Wynd, where bikes can also be rented. 

  • Cost: $15 per person. Bike rental is an additional fee payable to Riverside Adventure Company.
birding
Birding BHI REGISTER NOW

Bald Head Island offers fantastic opportunities for birding at all seasons. During the summer months, we are fortunate to have a large nesting population of the beautiful painted bunting. The island is also home to hundreds of egrets, herons and ibis as well as dozens of other species. Tours last about 2 hours and location is dependent on tides, weather and recent sightings. Bug spray is recommended. Bring binoculars if you have them; we will provide some extra to share. Participants must provide their own transportation. Meet at the Barrier Island Study Center. Reservations required. 
  • Mondays, year-round
  • Cost: $20 per person for non-members, $15 per person for BHI Conservancy Members, Free for BHI Conservancy Lifetime Level Members     
crabsCrabbing and Cast Netting REGISTER NOW

Did you know lurking beneath the surface of the salt marsh is one of the island's most ferocious predators? Join BHIC staff in the hunt for the blue crab! Grab the entire family and prepare to get your hands muddy, as we perfect the art of crabbing and cast netting! Crab lines, bait, dip nets, and cast nets are provided. Days and times vary weekly with the tides. Please note that we practice catch and release. Meet at the Village Creek Access located on Federal Road. Reservations required.
  • May-September
  • Cost: $15 per person for non-members, $10 per person for BHI Conservancy Member, Free for BHI Conservancy Lifetime Level Members 

CSI:BHI

CSI: BHI - Beachcombing Edition REGISTER NOW

Put on your detective hats, and swing down to the Bald Head Island Conservancy to become a "Conservancy Shell Investigator!" Embark on the ultimate scavenger hunt. Explore the beach and surf with BHIC naturalists to unearth evidence left behind by beach dwelling animals. Learn how to use investigative tools like seine nets, dip nets, binoculars, and magnifying glasses. Your trip will begin in the Young Hatchling Learning Laboratory. This wet laboratory is located in the Barrier Island Study Center. Sunscreen, hats, and water bottles are recommended. Reservations Required.

  • Cost: $15 per person for non-members, $10 per person for BHI Conservancy Members, Free for BHI Conservancy Lifetime Level Members

Hands-On Dissections

 REGISTER NOW

Join Conservancy staff for a hands-on dissection! Give us a call to see what we're learning about each day! Specimens include dogfish, sea stars, owl pellets, and much more! Learn how to use basic dissection tools in our Barrier Island Study Center. Introductory lesson great for all ages!! Please call (910) 338-0911 to register. $15 per specimen, families can work together.
ibis pond

Ibis Sanctuary Exploration REGISTER NOW

Explore the quiet solitude of Middle Island while visiting the Ibis Lake Sanctuary, a protected area of land that is private and only accessible with Conservancy staff. This particular spot is popular with several species of herons, egrets and ibis, with hundreds of birds flocking into the area to roost for the evening and early morning. We recommend bringing a camera! This is a spectacular event amidst beautiful scenery that is a must-see on the island. Meet at the Barrier Island Study Center. Reservations required. Personal golf cart transportation is required. Please bring bug spray and wear comfortable shoes. Binoculars and birding scopes will be provided. 

  • • Cost: $15 per person for non-members, $10 per person for BHI Conservancy Members, Free for BHI Conservancy Lifetime Level Members
 
Join professional naturalists on a guided tour of the wildlife hotspots of Bald Head Island! This 2 hour guided tour will focus on the best wildlife areas for the particular season you are visiting. Take the opportunity to see birds, mammals, reptiles, and other amazing wildlife by exploring our pristine beach, maritime forest, and salt marsh.
  • Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday from 9:00am-11:00am
  • $40 per person for off-island guests, includes ferry ticket, 2 hour guided tour, and golf cart transportation for the tour. 
  • $20 per person for on-island guests.

kayaking

Kayaking the Creeks REGISTER NOW

Explore the unspoiled creeks of Bald Head Island on a guided trip with Conservancy staff to learn about the beauty and importance of this habitat. Each trip offers a unique perspective of BHI and great views of wildlife; this is a must-do experience before you leave the island! Double kayaks are used, and children must be accompanied by an adult. Trips are tide and weather dependent. Meet at the Village Creek Access located on Federal Road. Please bring a water bottle, sunscreen, bug spray, a hat, and clothes that can get muddy and slightly damp. Reservations required.

  • • Hours: Tide dependent, please check the calendar on the right hand side of this page for upcoming trips.
  • • Cost: $45 per person for a 2 hour trip

Kids-Only Kayaking REGISTER NOW

Was your child unable to make it to one of our children's camps? Have they been stuck on the waitlist for camp kayak day? Sign them up for a kids- only trip! Your child can join Conservancy staff and other children to learn about the salt marsh in a relaxed, "camp-style" setting. Double kayaks are used, and children must be between 7 and 14 years of age. Sorry, Mom and Dad, these trips are just for kids! Trips are tide and weather dependent. Meet at the Village Creek Access located on Federal Road. Parents must sign a release form when they drop off their child in order to participate. We suggest bringing sunscreen, bug spray, a water bottle, hat, and clothes that can get muddy and slightly damp. Reservations required (910) 338-0911.

  • • Offered: May-September
  • • Hours: Tide dependent, Please check calendar on the right hand side of the screen for upcoming trips.
  • • Cost: $45 per child for a 2 hour trip

forest

Maritime Forest Hike 

Call (910) 338-0911 to register!

 Take a hike! Through our beautiful maritime forest, that is! Maritime forests are considered a globally imperiled ecosystem, and BHI has one of the best remaining tracts of forest along the southeast coast. Join a Conservancy naturalist for a walk through these woods and learn why this habitat is so crucial to the survival of Bald Head. You will also learn first-hand about the floral and faunal diversity that can be found in the forest, and perhaps catch of glimpse of some of the critters that call the forest home. Perfect for the entire family! Meet at the Barrier Island Study Center. Personal golf cart transportation is required to get to the forest trail. Bug spray and comfortable shoes are recommended. 

  • • Please check calendar on the right hand side of this page for upcoming trips.
  • • Cost: $15 per person for non-members, $10 per person for BHI Conservancy Members, Free for BHI Conservancy Lifetime Level Members

snapping turtleReptile Round-Up
REGISTER NOW

Join BHI Conservancy staff members in our Fleming Environmental Center to get up close and personal with our classroom reptiles. Learn about the unique adaptations that help our island reptiles survive! Participants will be able to touch live reptiles, turtle shells, snake sheds, and much more! Following the presentation, participants will also be able assist with feeding the reptiles. This program is great for all ages!

  • • Cost: $5.00 per person. Additional donations are always appreciated, as they fully support our mission.

movie posterSea Turtle Movie Screenings

Please join Conservancy staff, in the Barrier Island Study Center, for a screening of "Turtle: the Incredible Journey!" This film follows a loggerhead sea turtle hatchling from her nest, to the Gulf Stream, and back to the beach to lay her own nest! Along the way she faces many obstacles: predators, plastics, and sea level changes. Learn about the fascinating species that nests right here on Bald Head Island! Following the film, Conservancy staff will answer all of your questions about sea turtles. This film was released in 2011 and was directed by Nick Stringer. BHIC would like to thank the Hanover House Distributing Company for granting us permission to share this masterpiece. The film is rated G and is 1 hour and 20 minutes. Please be advised that this is not a cartoon film and some images may be too dramatic for young viewers. There is no charge to attend this film, but donations are always accepted and appreciated. Your monetary contributions aid our mission of conservation, education, and preservation and also assist our renowned Sea Turtle Protection Program. Seating is limited and provided on a first come, first serve basis. Please call (910) 338-0911 with questions.

  • Cost: Free and open to the public.

UTVSea Turtle Patrol Ride Alongs REGISTER NOW


Ride along with Conservancy Staff to get a firsthand look at what it's like to patrol for sea turtles. Participate in our 30th year of sea turtle conservation, and you might have the chance to witness a nesting sea turtle or hatching nest. This program is open for all ages, with children under 8 years old requiring an adult chaperone. Because of transportation restrictions, only two people can participate per night. We reserve the right to reschedule the program, or cancel with full refund, in the event of inclement weather or other circumstances beyond our control. Please note, participants will not be permitted to touch sea turtles during this program. 

  • • Monday June 9th- Thursday, August 7th
  • • Hours: 9pm-Midnight
  • • Cost: $125 per person for BHI Conservancy Members, $175 per person for non-members

Special Movie Screenings REGISTER NOW

DOLPHIN TALE Tuesday, July 29th, 6:30pm-8:30pm. Rated PG.

Based on true events, this family film is about Winter, a young dolphin who lost her tail in a crab trap, and Sawyer, the introverted 11 year old boy who befriends her. Film rights and description provided by Swank Motion Pictures. Following the film, BHI Conservancy staff will discuss the morbilivirus that has impacted local bottlenose dolphin populations. Price: $7.00 per person, reservations required, as seating is limited.

touch tank tank 2

NEW! Touch Tank Time: Tidal Treasures  REGISTER NOW

Join BHI Conservancy staff, in the Young Hatchling Learning Laboratory, to meet the creatures that inhabit our local tidal pools! This program is geared towards elementary aged students (and those young at heart!) Young learners will overcome their fear of spineless specimens by learning about and appreciating their unique features. Following the lesson, you'll have the chance to help BHI Conservancy staff feed the touch tank animals. The Young Hatchling Learning Laboratory is located in our Barrier Island Study Center, in the center of the BHI Conservancy campus.

Offered daily from 1:30pm-2:30pm.

$5.00 per person regardless of age or membership level, Lifetime Level Members are free.

NEW! Touch Tank Time: Tide Pool Ecology 101  REGISTER NOW

Become well versed in tidal ecology, invertebrate classification, aquaria care, and animal adaptations during this advanced touch tank session. Although this program is geared towards middle and high school students, there is always something new for adults to learn! The Young Hatchling Learning Laboratory is located in our Barrier Island Study Center, in the center of the BHI Conservancy Campus.

Monday, Wednesday, Friday, through August, from 12:30pm-1:30pm

Price: $5.00 per person regardless of age or membership level, Lifetime Level Members are free.

Photos courtesy of and ┬ęCopyrighted to: Maureen Dewire, Donna Finley, Andy Gould,
Doug Ledggett, Joe Lemeris, Denny Sorber, Lindsay Rice, Staff
Hosting and Design by
WaveRiderDesign.com