Explore New Hanover County Parks and Trails

View BRUNSWICK Parks & Trails View PENDER Parks & Trails New Hanover County Parks and TrailsNew Hanover County has many awesome parks and areas to take and play/explore with your furry family member. From the beautiful beach fronts of Carolina Beach and Wrightsville Beach to the canopied nature trails of the Abbey Nature Preserve and the Bluethenthal Wildflower Preserve. Dog parks galore are spread throughout our county if you’re looking to have your dog (and maybe even yourself) make new friends. No matter what type of dog exploration outing you are itching for, we got your craving satisfied with these friendly people/dog parks and trails!

    Price Dr., Wilmington, NC 28403
    10 acre wildlife preserve with wooded trails and a pond located on the UNCW campus.
    3201 S 17th St., Wilmington, NC 28412

    Not an official dog park, the museum boasts two walking areas for your dog! On one side of the public parking at the museum is the wooded Civil War trail and on the other side of the parking lot is the pond walk.
    4099 S 17th St., Wilmington, NC 28412
    Halyburton Park is a refuge for those hoping to get away from the hustle and bustle of Wilmington and its sprawling development. This 58-acre tract of land is 70% undeveloped, with a handicap-accessible 1.3-mile hike/bike trail circling the perimeter of the park and natural hiking trails that delve into the heart of the park’s natural areas.
    23 E Salisbury St., Wrightsville Beach, NC 28480
    From October to March, this is a great Wrightsville Beach beach walk (leashed only) for you and your dog.
    7069 Market St., Wilmington, NC 28411
    Located within Ogden Park at 615 Ogden Park Drive off of Gordon Road. Fenced in area, mostly sand, and plenty of shade. Faucet for water with bowls provided.
    633 Shenandoah St., Wilmington, NC 28411
    Smith Creek Park, a 92-acre park off Gordan Road, features a fresh water lake, kayak and canoe launches, trails, and a playground. Has a 1.3 mile multi-use trail around the lake.
    3500 Bethal Rd., Wilmington, NC 28409
    Open in 2009, Wade park is 17-acres that includes a half-mile-long, 10-foot-wide path, restrooms, a picnic shelter, a playground, three bridges, an open play area and benches


  1. Hugh MacRae Park (and Dog Park):
    314 Pine Grove Dr., Wilmington, NC 28409
    Hugh MacRae Park is located at 314 Pine Grove Drive. Shaded area with picnic tables. This dog park is fenced in. Free and open dawn to dusk.
  2. Abbey Nature Preserve:
    10200 US-17, Wilmington, NC 28411
    The Abbey Nature Preserve at Popular Grove (a 67-acre with a 2.4-mile nature trail) winds through woods and crosses over the mill pond. Poplar Grove, dedicated to education, preservation and service to the community, maintains a busy schedule of activities throughout the year. Dogs must always be on leash. Please bring your own dog poop bags and clean up after them.
  3. Carolina Beach Lake Park:
    400 S Lake Park Blvd., Carolina Beach, NC 28428
    This park is within easy walking distance of Beach Breeze. Walk north on Carolina Beach Avenue, go left on Lake Avenue, cross South Lake Park Boulevard, and you are at Lake Park. It is an 11 acre lake with a walking trail around it.
  4. Carolina Beach State Park:
    1010 State Park Rd., Carolina Beach, NC 28428
    You and your dog can enjoy miles of trails in this is 761 acre park. Dogs must be on a leash (no more than 6 feet) and are not allowed in any park buildings or swimming areas. Carolina Beach State Park is at the north end of the island along the Intra-Coastal Waterway. Drive through town on Lake Park Blvd., turn left onto Dow Rd, right onto State Park Rd.
  5. Empie Park (and Dog Park):
    3405 Park Ave., Wilmington, NC 28403
    Located within Empie Park at 3405 Park Avenue. Completely fenced in with large dog and small dog areas, water and pet waste stations, and plenty of shade. Free and open dawn to dusk.
  6. Freeman Park:
    1800 Canal Dr., Carolina Beach, NC 28428
    The north end of Pleasure Island is dog-friendly. You can drive on the beach in a four-wheel drive vehicle. There is a $20 daily entry fee or a $60 yearly fee to drive on the beach. You can also find street parking near the entrance and walk in for free. Dogs are required to be on a leash from March 1st to Oct. 31. The rest of the year dogs are allowed off leash, but they must remain under voice command and the owner must be within a reasonable distance.
  7. Greenfield Lake:
    1941 Amphitheatre Dr., Wilmington, NC 28401
    With 250 acres, Greenfield Park is one of the best spots for outside activities. Located next to Greenfield Lake, it features 2 unlit tennis courts, the Greenfield Grind skate park, outdoor amphitheater, boat rentals, and a beautiful 5 mile biking/walking trail through gorgeous lush gardens.
  8. Joe Eakes Park (and Dog Park –  Gurney Hood Barking Lot)
    Corner of 7th and K Ave., Kure Beach, NC 28449

    The park includes a children’s playground, a picnic area, a full basketball court, a regulation baseball field, two bocce ball courts, two tennis courts with a practice backboard, and a disc golf course.  Picnic tables and benches are also placed around the playground. You can take your dogs to the Gurney Hood Barking Lot (Dog Park) and let them loose. In fact, it’s the only public area in Kure Beach where you can let your dog off its leash to romp and play.
  9. Mike Chappell Park (and Dog Park):
    501 Dow Rd. S., Carolina Beach, NC 28428
    10-acre park has something for everyone in the family, even Fido. Equipped with two tennis courts, 1 basketball court, 1 youth basketball area, playground equipment, dog park, baseball and softball fields, and a soccer field. There is also an 8,000 square foot skate park, complete with ramps, rails, and bowls. Open from 8 AM to 11 PM daily.
  10. Olsen Park:
    5510 Olsen Park Ln, Wilmington, NC 28405
    Spacious recreation area offers 5 lighted baseball fields, a playground, picnic space & concessions.
  11. Wrightsville Beach Park and Loop:

    2.56 concrete path taking you through a variety of sceneries including the beautiful views of the channel, beach houses and businesses of Wrightsville Beach.

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