Fodor's Expert Review Ocracoke Pony Pen

Ocracoke Island Nature Preserve/Wildlife Refuge
Free

From a small observation platform, 6 miles southwest of the north Hatteras–Ocracoke ferry landing, you can look out at the descendants of the Banker ponies that roamed wild before the island came under the jurisdiction of Cape Hatteras National Seashore. The National Park Service manages the population of 25–30 animals; the wild herd once numbered nearly 500. All the animals you see today were born in captivity and are fed and kept on a 180-acre range. Legends abound about the arrival of the island's Banker ponies. Some believe they made their way to the island after the abandonment of Roanoke's Lost Colony. Others believe they were left by early Spanish explorers or swam to shore following the sinking of the Black Squall, a ship carrying circus performers.

Nature Preserve/Wildlife Refuge Free Family

Quick Facts

NC 12
Ocracoke Island, North Carolina  27960, USA

252-475–9000 -general park information

www.nps.gov/caha/historyculture/ocracokeponies.htm

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Rate Includes: Free

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