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“The Sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.”
Jacques Cousteau
Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge

Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge consists of North and South Monomoy Islands and a portion of Morris Island. Its 2,750 acres are predominantly barrier beach island of sand dunes, freshwater ponds, and salt and freshwater marshes. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service protects and manages Monomoy as habitat for wildlife, with a special emphasis on migratory birds. Many of these migratory species nest here, and a variety of species native to the area also inhabit the refuge. The diversity of plant and animal life visible from refuge trails provides visitors with excellent opportunities for wildlife observation and nature study.
Located on the "elbow" of Cape Cod, the refuge stretches approximately ten miles southward into the waters of Nantucket Sound and the Atlantic Ocean. Ninety-four percent of Monomoy's acreage was designated a Wilderness Area in 1970, and is managed under the guidelines of the Wilderness Act of 1964. It is the only Wilderness Area in southern New England.
To reach the headquarters on Morris Island, take U.S. Route 6 east to State Route 137 south to State Route 28 east through Chatham to Chatham Lighthouse and Coast Guard Station. Take the first left after lighthouse, then the first right. Follow Morris Island Road to signs for the refuge on the left.
You can hike the nature trails, observe, photograph, and study wildlife and plants. Beach combing, shellfishing, and surf fishing are all popular activities on refuge beaches. *There are no picnic, toilets, or camp sites on the refuge.
North and South Monomoy Islands are accessible by boat only. Commercial boat tours are available in season. Land access is to Morris Island only.
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