Coronavirus (COVID-19) Notice
During the current public health emergency, whenever possible, outdoor recreation sites at national wildlife refuges and national fish hatcheries will remain open to the public. Visitor Centers and other facilities, however, may be closed. Scheduled events may be cancelled. Please follow public health guidelines and avoid congregating. For more information: FWS Coronavirus Response page and call for local conditions.


  • Hours

    Refuge Hours

    The refuge is open from 6am to 8pm, 7 days a week. Visitor Center hours are 9am to 4pm, 7 days a week.

    Contact Info, Hours & Directions

  • Wildlife Viewing

    Recent Bird Sightings

    This list shows data from eBird Trail Tracker. Since many refuge locations are included, one species may be listed multiple times.

    Recent Bird Sightings

  • Important Alert


    PLEASE NOTE: Our mailing address has changed to 8231 Beach Road, Chincoteague, VA 23336.

Around the Refuge

Current Conditions

Caution Promo 150x118

As of March 20, 2020, Visitor Center operations are suspended in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. Public parking areas and trails remain open. The refuge entrance fee is waived. To help us protect nesting birds, please obey seasonal closures on the South portion of Assateague Island and all of Assawoman Island.


Update: Water Control Structure Replacement

Culvurt Replacement March 2020 PROMO

Good news! The first phase of our water control structure replacement project is nearly complete. The Wildlife Loop is now open to hiking, biking and afternoon vehicle use (3pm - dusk). Construction and paving are on-going, so please use caution on the trail. When necessary, for your safety, there may be intermittent trail closures. When the impacted sections of the Wildlife Loop and Beach Road are being paved please expect a temporary closure on the Wildlife Loop and one-lane traffic along Beach Road. The second phase of this project will include replacement of 3 additional water control structures. Two are located on the Wildlife Loop and one is to the east of the Service Road. The refuge will post updates when a timeline for this work is established.

Looking Forward

Beach Relocation Planning

New Beach Experience (Promo 150x118)

A third collaborative, recreational beach planning workshop was held with local, state and federal partners in May 2017 to continue refining design concepts at the new recreational beach location, 1.5 miles north of the current recreational beach. Funding is currently unavailable. More materials available at FHWA Website:

2017 Beach Relocation Update (pdf 266KB)

About the Complex

Chincoteague NWR Complex

Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge is managed as part of the Chincoteague NWR Complex .

Read more about the complex
About the NWRS

National Wildlife Refuge System


The National Wildlife Refuge System, within the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, manages a national network of lands and waters set aside to conserve America's fish, wildlife, and plants.

Learn more about the NWRS