Zeke Island Reserve

A Coastal Paradise

Located in the Cape Fear River basin and just across from the town of Southport, North Carolina is Zeke Island Reserve. A pristine enclave of salt marshes, sand bars and beaches, it’s a haven for waterbirds, marine life and recreational enthusiasts from the mainland. It’s a dedicated nature reserve worth frequenting when you live in the Southport area!

Pristine and Untouched

The best way to describe Zeke Island is “lagoon-like,” with sleepy shoals and scattered dunes dotted across all 1,635 acres of its pristine plateau. This reserve is extremely unique, it is bordered by both fresh water and salt water, with the Cape Fear River to the West and the Atlantic Ocean on the right. These brackish conditions are perfect for anglers looking to drop anchor and catch Red Drum, Flounder, Rays, and other sought-after prizes.

Perfect for a Visit

Zeke Island Reserve’s lagoons and waterways are a kayaker’s paradise! Many will set off from Southport and spend a day exploring the shallow inlets and marsh grass. While Bald Head Island and Oak Island are also fantastic places to go if you for a more secluded and private beach experience, Zeke Island is completely devoid of any villages or tourism, save for the select groups of locals that will take time to venture out here. It’s a rare environment that you will seldom find, even in coastal Carolina.

Plenty of Activities

Because of the serene beaches here, Zeke Island Reserve is also the perfect hotspot for shelling, birdwatching (or “birding”), jogging, skimboarding, cornhole, and just about every beach activity you can think of. Clams, crabs, shrimp, and other marine life will use the protected estuaries as breeding grounds, and birds make great use of Zeke Island as a nesting area. It’s a natural paradise that’s great for exploring respectfully.

*Photo Attributed to Carolina Beach.com

The Perfect Distance

Best of all, Zeke Island Reserve makes a great day trip retreat that’s within reach of the shoreline. Southport and Carolina Beach are not far from this coastal paradise. When it’s time for a drink, a bite to eat, or some quality wind-down time after an enjoyable day outdoors, you can easily paddle or sail back to town.

Worth the Journey

The journey to Zeke Island is not a short one, but it’s well worth the effort! Residents of The Home Place of Southport will love the fact that such a place of natural beauty is so close to home! So, when you feel like having a beach adventure a bit different than Bald Head Island, Caswell Beach, or even Oak Island, be sure to ask the local guides about Zeke Island Reserve.