jones lake state park

Jones Lake State Park: Explore North Carolina

Welcome to Jones Lake State Park, a stunning natural oasis nestled in Bladen County, North Carolina. With its vast expanse of 1,669 acres, this park offers a plethora of outdoor recreational opportunities for visitors of all ages and interests. Whether you’re an avid camper, an enthusiastic angler, or simply someone who appreciates the beauty of nature, Jones Lake State Park has something for everyone.

Key Takeaways:

  • Immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Jones Lake State Park in Bladen County, North Carolina.
  • Experience a wide range of outdoor activities including camping, fishing, hiking, and boating.
  • Explore the park’s scenic hiking trails, perfect for nature photography and bird watching.
  • Enjoy a peaceful and relaxing camping experience at the park’s campground.
  • Take advantage of the park’s convenient amenities and facilities, including picnic shelters and restrooms.

Essential Information

Jones Lake State Park is a picturesque destination located in Bladen County, North Carolina. Spanning across 1,669 acres, the park offers visitors a chance to explore its natural beauty and engage in a variety of outdoor activities. Whether you’re a camping enthusiast, an avid angler, or simply looking to immerse yourself in nature, Jones Lake State Park has something for everyone.

One of the highlights of the park is Jones Lake itself, an impressive 8,000-foot long Carolina Bay. The lake provides the perfect setting for camping, fishing, boating, and swimming. There are designated swim areas for visitors to enjoy a refreshing dip in the crystal-clear waters. Picnic grounds with tables and grills are also available, making it an idyllic spot for a family outing or a peaceful picnic amidst the stunning surroundings.

For those seeking adventure, the park boasts several hiking trails that wind through diverse ecosystems, offering breathtaking views and an opportunity to observe the local flora and fauna. Additionally, Jones Lake State Park is a haven for bird watchers, with a wide array of bird species inhabiting the park. Capture the beauty of these feathered creatures and the surrounding natural landscapes through your lens for memorable nature photography.

Activities Facilities
  • Camping
  • Fishing
  • Hiking
  • Boating
  • Swimming
  • Picnic grounds
  • Picnic shelters
  • Restrooms
  • Designated swim area
  • Boat rentals

Whether you’re a nature lover, an outdoor enthusiast, or someone seeking a serene escape from the bustling city life, Jones Lake State Park is a must-visit destination that offers a plethora of recreational opportunities in a stunning natural setting. Pack your camping gear, fishing rods, and hiking boots, and embark on an unforgettable adventure at Jones Lake State Park.

Park Highlights

When visiting Jones Lake State Park, there are several highlights that you won’t want to miss. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, an outdoor adventurer, or simply looking for a peaceful picnic spot, the park offers something for everyone.

Exploring Hiking Trails

If you enjoy hiking, you’ll be delighted by the variety of trails available at Jones Lake State Park. One of the park’s highlights is the Bay Trail, a four-mile loop that takes you around the picturesque Jones Lake. This trail offers a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the beautiful Carolina Bay habitat and observe the diverse wildlife that calls this area home.

Additionally, the Cedar Loop Trail is a one-mile trail that winds through the bay forest and sand ridge communities, providing a tranquil and scenic walk. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced hiker, these trails offer a chance to connect with nature and enjoy the serenity of the park.

Nature Photography and Bird Watching

With its stunning landscapes and abundant birdlife, Jones Lake State Park is a haven for nature photographers and bird watchers. Along the hiking trails and picnic areas, you’ll have ample opportunities to capture the beauty of the park through your lens.

Bring your camera and zoom in on the vibrant colors of the birds that inhabit the area. From graceful herons to colorful warblers, there’s always a chance to spot a new feathered friend. Don’t forget to pack your binoculars and field guide to make the most of your bird watching experience.

Picnic Areas and Boating

For a leisurely afternoon, take advantage of the park’s picnic areas, which offer breathtaking views of the tranquil Jones Lake. Find a shaded spot under the trees, spread out a picnic blanket, and savor a delicious meal while surrounded by nature’s beauty.

If you’re looking to explore the lake, boating is another highlight of Jones Lake State Park. Rentals for canoes and paddleboats are available, allowing you to paddle across the smooth waters and enjoy the serenity of the lake.

With its hiking trails, nature photography opportunities, picnic areas, bird watching spots, and boating activities, Jones Lake State Park truly offers a wide range of outdoor highlights for visitors to enjoy.


When visiting Jones Lake State Park, there are plenty of activities to keep you entertained and immersed in nature. Whether you enjoy camping, fishing, hiking, or bird watching, this park has something for everyone.

1. Camping

If you’re looking to spend some quality time surrounded by nature, Jones Lake State Park offers camping facilities for both RV and tent enthusiasts. Set up your campsite and enjoy the serene atmosphere of the park. Wake up to the sounds of birds chirping and start your day with a beautiful sunrise over Jones Lake.

2. Fishing

For fishing enthusiasts, Jones Lake is a popular spot to cast a line and try your luck. The lake is known for its abundance of yellow perch, making it a favorite among anglers. Spend a relaxing day on the water, enjoying the tranquility and the thrill of reeling in a catch.

3. Hiking Trails

Explore the park’s natural surroundings and take in the breathtaking views by venturing onto one of the hiking trails. Jones Lake State Park offers several trails that cater to different skill levels, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the beauty of the Carolina Bay habitat. Whether you’re a novice hiker or an experienced trekker, there’s a trail for you.

4. Bird Watching

Jones Lake State Park is a haven for bird watchers. With its diverse ecosystem, the park is home to a variety of bird species. Grab your binoculars and camera and get ready to spot colorful birds as they soar through the trees or dive into the lake. Don’t forget to capture the perfect shot to cherish the memories of your visit.


camping jones lake state park

Jones Lake State Park offers a range of accommodation options for visitors, ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable stay. The park’s campground features both RV and tent sites, allowing visitors to choose the option that best suits their needs. Each site is equipped with picnic tables, allowing guests to relax and enjoy meals in the picturesque surroundings.

Restrooms are conveniently located within the campground, providing easy access for campers. The park also offers picnic shelters that can be reserved for larger gatherings, such as family reunions or group outings. These shelters provide shade and protection from the elements, allowing visitors to enjoy outdoor activities and socialize in a comfortable environment.

Reservations are recommended, especially during peak seasons, to ensure availability and secure a preferred campsite or picnic shelter. By planning ahead and making a reservation, visitors can avoid disappointment and have a seamless experience at Jones Lake State Park.

“The campground at Jones Lake State Park was the perfect base for our outdoor adventure. The RV site we stayed in had all the amenities we needed, and the picnic table provided a great spot to enjoy meals with our family. We also reserved a picnic shelter for a group gathering, and it was a fantastic venue for our event. I highly recommend making a reservation to ensure you have a great experience at this beautiful park.” – John, camper

Table: Campground Amenities

RV Sites Tent Sites Restrooms
Electricity and water hookups Spacious and shaded Clean and well-maintained
Dump station Close proximity to amenities Accessible for all visitors
Picnic tables Scenic views

Exploring the Area

nearby parks and trails

If you’re planning a visit to Jones Lake State Park, you’ll be pleased to know that there are several nearby parks and trails that offer additional outdoor recreational opportunities and beautiful natural scenery. Located near Elizabethtown, Fayetteville, and Hope Mills, these parks are just a short drive away and worth exploring.

Nearby Parks

  • Elizabethtown Nature Park: This park is located in Elizabethtown and offers hiking trails, picnic areas, and a playground. It’s a great place to spend a day enjoying nature.
  • Hope Mills Municipal Park: Situated in Hope Mills, this park has a lake with a walking trail around it, playgrounds, and picnic areas. It’s perfect for a family outing or a leisurely stroll.
  • Fayetteville Rose Garden: If you’re a fan of beautiful gardens, make sure to visit the Fayetteville Rose Garden. It features over 4,000 rose bushes and is a lovely spot for a peaceful walk or a picnic.

Hiking Trails

If you’re looking to explore the area on foot, there are several hiking trails near Jones Lake State Park:

  1. Jones Lake Loop Trail: This trail is a moderate 5-mile loop that takes you around Jones Lake. It offers scenic views of the lake and the surrounding nature.
  2. Bay Tree Lake State Park Trail: Located in White Lake, this trail is approximately 2 miles long and takes you through a variety of habitats, including pine forests and wetlands.
  3. Elizabethtown Nature Trail: This trail is a short loop that winds through the Elizabethtown Nature Park. It’s a great option if you’re looking for a quick nature escape.

Whether you’re interested in exploring nearby parks or hitting the hiking trails, there’s no shortage of outdoor activities to enjoy in the area surrounding Jones Lake State Park.

Services and Facilities

Jones Lake State Park Services and Facilities

When visiting Jones Lake State Park, you can expect a range of services and facilities that enhance your experience in this beautiful natural setting. The park provides various amenities to ensure that visitors have everything they need for a comfortable and enjoyable stay. Here is an overview of the services and facilities available:

Picnic Shelters

Enjoy a leisurely picnic surrounded by the scenic beauty of Jones Lake. The park offers picnic shelters that can be reserved for gatherings of all sizes. Whether you’re planning a family reunion or a group outing, these shelters provide a convenient and shaded space to relax and enjoy a meal together. Make sure to book in advance to secure your spot.

Auditorium and Classroom

If you’re interested in educational programs and events, Jones Lake State Park has an auditorium and a classroom available. These spaces are perfect for hosting workshops, presentations, and other activities that promote learning and environmental awareness. Whether you’re a student or a lifelong learner, these facilities offer a unique opportunity to engage with the park’s natural resources and history.

Restrooms, Drinking Water, and Exhibits

To ensure your comfort during your visit, the park provides restrooms and drinking water facilities. These amenities are conveniently located throughout the park, making it easy to access them when needed. Additionally, there are educational exhibits that provide insights into the park’s rich history and the unique ecosystems found within Jones Lake State Park.

Some of the facilities at Jones Lake State Park are handicap accessible, ensuring that everyone can enjoy the park’s offerings. It’s important to note that reservations may be required for certain amenities, so it’s always a good idea to check the park’s website or contact the park office in advance for more information.

Services and Facilities Description
Picnic Shelters Shaded spaces for picnics and gatherings
Auditorium and Classroom Spaces for educational programs and events
Restrooms Convenient facilities for visitors
Drinking Water Access to drinking water throughout the park
Exhibits Educational displays about the park’s history and ecosystem

Park History

Jones Lake State Park has a fascinating history that adds to its allure as a must-visit destination. The park’s roots date back to colonial times when it was originally settled. Later on, it was named after Isaac Jones, a generous landowner who donated the land for the establishment of Elizabethtown.

During the Great Depression, the park came into existence as part of a federal Farm Resettlement project. In 1939, it opened its doors as the first state park in North Carolina exclusively for African Americans. This historical significance makes Jones Lake State Park a unique and meaningful place to explore.

Immerse Yourself in the Park’s History

When you visit Jones Lake State Park, take the opportunity to delve deeper into its rich history through exhibits and educational programs. Discover the stories and experiences that shaped the park’s past, and gain a newfound appreciation for its cultural and natural heritage.

Planning Your Visit and Additional Resources

Planning a trip to Jones Lake State Park is a breeze with the park’s comprehensive website and additional online resources. The official website provides essential information about park facilities, camping options, recreational activities, and upcoming events. It’s a valuable tool to help you plan your visit and make the most of your time at the park.

Additionally, there are various online resources available that offer insights into the park’s history, including articles, documentaries, and historical archives. These resources can further enrich your understanding of Jones Lake State Park and enhance your overall experience.


Where is Jones Lake State Park located?

Jones Lake State Park is located in Bladen County, North Carolina.

What activities are available at Jones Lake State Park?

Jones Lake State Park offers camping, fishing, hiking, boating, bird watching, and nature photography.

Can I swim in Jones Lake?

Yes, there is a designated swim area in Jones Lake where swimming is allowed.

Are there picnic areas in the park?

Yes, Jones Lake State Park has picnic grounds with tables and grills, as well as picnic shelters that can be reserved.

Are there hiking trails in the park?

Yes, the park has the Bay Trail, a four-mile loop, and the Cedar Loop Trail, a one-mile trail, for hiking.

Can I go boating in Jones Lake?

Yes, boating is allowed on Jones Lake, and canoe and paddleboat rentals are available.

What kind of fish can I catch in Jones Lake?

Yellow perch is the most abundant fish species in Jones Lake, making it a popular fishing spot.

What accommodations are available at Jones Lake State Park?

The park offers both RV and tent camping sites at its campground.

Are there nearby parks and trails to explore?

Yes, there are several nearby parks with hiking trails and picnic areas that visitors can explore.

What facilities and services does Jones Lake State Park provide?

The park provides picnic shelters, an auditorium, a classroom, restrooms, drinking water, and educational exhibits. Some facilities are handicap accessible.

Can I learn about the park’s history during my visit?

Yes, the park has exhibits and educational programs that provide information about its rich history.

Are there any additional resources available for planning a visit to Jones Lake State Park?

Yes, you can visit the park’s website and explore additional online resources to plan your visit.

Source Links

Scroll to Top