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Great Bay Wildlife Management Area in New Jersey

by  guest-paddler

A self-supported trip created by guest-paddler

Trip Overview

Kayaking the estuary at the Great Bay Wildlife Management Area located in Tuckerton, N.J. is probably as diverse as it gets. Sheltered back creeks or open bay areas create a variable playground for almost every kayaking enthusiast. Winding tributaries with tall grasses and bayberries provide a beautiful setting and refuge to hundreds of exotic birds throughout the spring, summer and fall. This area is known for the migration of thousands of birds along the Atlantic Flyway. You will notice osprey, peregrine falcons, great blue herons, black ibis, as well as many shore birds. Seals are often spotted along the coastal inlet area. Take a tour along the Tuckerton Creek, home of the Tuckerton Seaport, a local cultural heritage center. Visit the many restaurants in town and take a lunch break. Everything is accessible by kayak.


There is a beautiful Bed and Breakfast located in the town of Tuckerton called The J & D Thompson Inn. Other accommodations can be found along route to Atlantic City.


Parkway South to Exit 58.Turn left on Route 539. Approximately four miles turn right on Route 9 in town of Tuckerton. Make right on Great Bay Boulevard and follow for about two miles, just over bridge.

Parkway North to Exit 58 and follow same directions as South.

From Philadelphia go to Route 70 East to Route 72 East. Make right on Route 539 and follow to Route 9 in Tuckerton. Make right then first left on Great Bay Blvd, follow for two miles just over bridge.


Put-ins and take-outs are free along the Refuge and at First Bridge Marina & Kayaks.


Free trail map with some kayaking tips can be found by contacting First Bridge Marina & Kayaks.


"Great Bay Boulevard EcoTour Trail Guide" can be found at the Tuckerton Seaport (609)296-8868 and First Bridge Marina & Kayaks (609) 296-1888.

Trip Details

  • Trip Duration: Day Trip
  • Sport/Activity: Kayaking
  • Water Type: River/Creek (Up to Class II)

Trip Location