Recreation





Information on camping, hunting, fishing, hiking, and other outdoor activities in the First State.




Online



Campground Reservations

Delaware State Parks manage 17 state parks and 5 unique, family-friendly campgrounds, with full hook-up sites available at Lums Pond State Park. Whatever your camping style, you can camp under the stars in a tent, RV, cabin, yurt, or cottage.


State Park Programs & Events

Discover interesting and fun-filled programs and events in Delaware's state parks any season of the year.


Recreational Licensing

The Division of Fish and Wildlife offers licenses, permits, stamps, and passes for recreational fishing and hunting, and for the use of Delaware Wildlife Areas.


State Park Passes

Delaware State Parks offers annual permits to state parks to residents and non-residents of Delaware.


Boating Safety Course

Any motorized boat operator born after January 1, 1978, is required by Delaware law to pass a boater safety course and to carry a boater education card. The Boating Safety Course Schedule is available at DNREC.


Conservation Access Pass

A Conservation Access Pass is required for any registered motor vehicle that’s used to access State Wildlife Areas for hunting, bird-watching, photography and similar recreational activities.


Fort Delaware State Park

Reserve your tickets for the Delaware City Ferry, Fort Delaware River Cruise, Fort Mott Ferry, Pea Patch Extended Paranormal Investigation, ABA Birding Cruise, or Escape Fort Delaware: The Disloyalty Files online.


Killens Pond State Park

Reserve your tickets for the Killens Pond Waterpark and Puppies in the Poll online.


Banquet & Special Event Venues

No matter what you are planning, there is a special place in your Delaware State Parks to create a one-of-a-kind event. We have unique locations that are perfect for a casual business meeting for ten or an elegant wedding for hundreds, situated within some of Delaware's most scenic areas. Facilities are available for a few hours or a few days, and can accommodate from ten to 150. For larger events (up to 250), tents may be used on the grounds.

Sports



Bicycling in Delaware

According to the League of American Bicyclists, Delaware is one of the most bicycle-friend state in the United States.


Disc Golf

Disc Golf is fun for the family and easy to play. The sport provides a unique recreational opportunity for park visitors of all ages and skill levels.


Geocaching

As you hunt for treasure across the state, you'll learn more about our parks as well as develop your orienteering or GPS skills.


Golf Courses

Delaware State Parks offers two public golf courses.


Soccer Club, Hockessin

The Delaware FC Hockessin Soccer Club is a not-for-profit, volunteer organization formed to promote the development of youth soccer in the Hockessin area. Our goal, each season, is to provide each player with an enjoyable soccer experience through participation, skill development and team camaraderie.


Soccer Club, Kirkwood

The Kirkwood Soccer Club exists to promote the development of youth in our community through participation in athletic competition.

Our goal is to provide activities that offer recreational, social and physical development for children of all skill levels. We are committed to providing participants with the opportunity to develop athletically and personally in a positive, supportive, and safe environment. The Kirkwood Soccer Club encourages and promotes ethical and moral behavior, good sportsmanship, community involvement and good citizenship.


Special Olympics Delaware

Special Olympics Delaware has been changing the lives of Delawareans since 1971. Through sports training and competition in 19 sports, more than 4,300 athletes with intellectual disabilities have proven that, given the chance, no disability is too great to overcome.


Track & Field

The site for High School cross country, indoor track, and track & Field in the state of Delaware.


USTA Tennis List

The United States Tennis Association (USTA) is the nationally governing body for the sport of tennis. A not-for-profit organization, the USTA administers programs nationwide for players of all ages, backgrounds and ability levels.

Boating & Fishing



Annual Sport Fishing Tournament

The Division of Fish and Wildlife sponsors the annual Sport Fishing Tournament to promote recreational fishing in Delaware.


Boat License Agents

There are authorized boat registration sales outlets in each county in Delaware. Most offer both boat registration and boat ramp certificates. A few only offer boat ramp certificates.


Boat Registration & Renewal

Delaware law requires the registration of all motorboats, including those powered by electric motors, if Delaware is its state of principal use. All motorboats launched from tidal access areas administered by the Division of Fish and Wildlife must be registered in Delaware or have a valid Tidal Access Boat Ramp Certificate.


Boating or Fishing Event Application

A Boating/Fishing event permit from the Fish and Wildlife Natural Resources Police is required for safety reasons when holding an event on the water.


Boating Handbook

Use this handbook to familiarize yourself with steps to make all your boating outings safe and enjoyable. Remember, safety on Delaware waterways is the responsibility of all boaters.


Boating Safety for Kids

The Office of Boating Safety and Education takes great pride in educating Delaware’s youth on boating safety. They offer several programs to get children interested in and learning about boating safety. It’s important to start early so that each youngster is the best and the most knowledgeable boater he or she is capable of becoming.


Boating Safety Volunteers

The Office of Boating Safety and Education promotes and supports the public’s effort to become better informed about boating safety. With the help of volunteers, the Office has successfully certified thousands of students. Each year the demand to educate the boating public grows; the Office constantly is searching for new boating volunteers.


Fishing in Delaware

The Fisheries Section works to enhance and protect Delaware’s fish and aquatic resources in support of recreational and commercial fishing. It provides first-class fishing and boating access to Delaware’s many waterways. And it conducts fisheries research, resource monitoring, and collection of biological information on marine fisheries.


Fishing License Questions and Answers

A list of many of the questions about fishing licenses in Delaware.


Fishing License Agents

Hunting and fishing licenses, and conservation access passes (CAP), can be purchased at the following authorized licensing agents. Some agents only sell fishing licenses while others sell only hunting licenses and conservation access passes.


Fishing - Public Freshwater Fishing Ponds

More than 30 Delaware freshwater lakes and ponds are open for fishing and other recreation. These impoundments, most of them managed by the Division of Fish and Wildlife, range in size from five to 189 acres. They support a variety of gamefish.


Freshwater Trout Fishing

Delaware’s freshwater trout program is a self-supporting put-and-take fishery in selected streams in northern New Castle County that are stocked with rainbow, brown and/or brook trout.


Gamefish & Freshwater Fishing Restrictions

Gamefish are found in either tidal or non-tidal freshwater in Delaware. Gamefish taken from Delaware waters cannot legally be sold, traded or bartered unless authorized by permit.


Small Pond Angling

In addition to Delaware’s many state-owned freshwater fishing ponds, there are nine small ponds, most geared toward bank fishing and most managed by the Division of Fish and Wildlife. They are ideal for beginners and youth angling.


State Fishing Records

This page lists each current Delaware record fish as well as the anglers who hooked, fought and landed them. Seventeen freshwater species and thirty saltwater species of trophy fish have been recognized as state records in Delaware. These fish are the largest specimens documented to have been caught by rod and reel.

Hunting



Becoming an Outdoors-Woman

Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) is an educational program offering hands-on workshops to encourage and enhance participation in outdoor activities like hunting and shooting sports, fishing and boating, and non-harvest activities.


Delaware’s White-Tailed Deer

White-tailed deer are one of the most important wildlife species managed in Delaware. Wildlife-watchers, photographers, and hunters flock to the state in pursuit of deer. They contribute millions of dollars each year to the state’s economy.


Hunt in Delaware

The Division of Fish and Wildlife manages 19 public wildlife areas; over 62,000 acres of land. In addition to providing habitat for a variety of wildlife, these lands provide hunting and other outdoor recreational opportunities. Much of this land, and many acres of private land, provide hunting during a number of seasons.


Hunter Education & Safety

The Delaware Hunter Education Program is committed to putting safe, ethical and educated hunters in the field. Since 1970, it has continued Delaware’s tradition of fair chase hunting by educating and developing responsible, involved, safe and knowledgeable hunters for the future of The First State.


Hunter Education Volunteer Instructor Program

The Delaware Hunter Education Program needs you to help prepare the next generation and other newcomers to hunting or trapping for a safe and enjoyable hunting future.


Hunters with Disabilities

Delaware offers a variety of opportunities for hunters with disabilities.


Hunting License Agents

Hunting and fishing licenses, and conservation access passes (CAP), can be purchased at the following authorized licensing agents. Some agents only sell fishing licenses while others sell only hunting licenses and conservation access passes. Licenses also can be purchased online or at the licensing desk inside DNREC’s Richardson and Robbins Building, at 89 Kings Highway SW, in Dover.


Hunting License Fees

Information on fees for licenses, registrations, permits, and passes from the Delaware Division of Fish and Wildlife.


Managed Hunts

Managed or controlled hunting is a highly organized effort to reduce the local deer population in urban areas.


Master Hunter Program

The Delaware Master Hunter Program is not for beginners. Your hunting license was only the beginning. And you aren’t a beginner any more. In fact, you’ve been at this outdoors pursuit called hunting for a long time and have a wealth of experience to show for it.


Migratory Bird Hunting

As a migratory bird hunter, you are contributing to a proud tradition of wildlife conservation. Revenues from hunting licenses, Duck Stamps, and excise taxes on hunting-related equipment have funded wildlife research, management, and habitat acquisition since the early 20th century.


Sportsmen Against Hunger

During Delaware’s deer season, the Delaware Sportsmen Against Hunger program encourages hunters to share their harvest by donating venison to Delawareans in need. All donated deer are processed into ground venison free of charge to the hunter.


Wild Turkeys

The Division of Fish and Wildlife has an annual, volunteer-based survey to record observations of wild turkeys across the state during the months of July and August.

Hiking & Camping



Camping in Delaware

Delaware Campgrounds make for the ideal destination for those who long for relaxation, exploration, and making lifelong memories. Choose to camp near the Delaware Beaches, scenic waterways, or among the trails of the Delaware State Parks. Here you will find fun and affordable locations throughout the state with sites for tents, RV hookup, Yurts, renovated cabins, and even glamping options!


Hiking in Delaware

To the north, the gentle hills of the Appalachian Piedmont offer woodsy hiking trails and challenging treks on rolling hills. Farther south, the coastal plain gives hikers open views of scenic farmland and gentle waterways. And along the ocean coast, Delaware’s beaches deliver an unmatched experience of wind, waves and wild dunes. From the state’s parks to the Delaware Outdoor Trail, hikers will find their perfect paths here.


Play Outside - Map of Facilities and Trails

Play Outside offers a convenient and detailed map with information about public parks and recreational facilities in Delaware. Find nearby public outdoor recreation areas such as municipal, county and state parks. Find wildlife areas. Find playgrounds, ball fields, fishing piers, trails, and more. And find the things like parking lots and bathrooms that you’ll need as well.


Go Ape Treetop Adventure

Visitors to Lums Pond State Park can now see the park from a whole new perspective -- from the treetops! The new Go Ape! Treetop Adventure Course at the park allows outdoor adventurers to navigate through the park and even cross the water using Double Stirrups, Zigzag Trapeze, Flying Carpet, Canyon Crossing, two Tarzan swings and FIVE zip lines.


Campground Reservations

Delaware State Parks manage 17 state parks and 5 unique, family-friendly campgrounds, with full hook-up sites available at Lums Pond State Park. Whatever your camping style, you can camp under the stars in a tent, RV, cabin, yurt, or cottage.


Summer Camps

Delaware State Parks offer exciting summer day camps all over Delaware!

Wildlife & The Outdoors



Becoming an Outdoors-Woman

Becoming an Outdoors-Woman (BOW) is an educational program offering hands-on workshops to encourage and enhance participation in outdoor activities like hunting and shooting sports, fishing and boating, and non-harvest activities.


Birding in Delaware

Delaware State Parks offer a variety of birding events across Delaware.


Conservation Program

The Division of Fish and Wildlife implements important wildlife and habitat conservation and education initiatives, like the Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program and the Delaware Shorebird Monitoring Project.


Coyotes in Delaware

Documented coyote sightings are not new in any of Delaware’s three counties Coyotes (Canis latrans) now makes its habitat in all 50 states but Hawaii, and they have been spotted in Delaware both north and south of the C&D Canal.


Delaware Aquatic Resources Education Center

The Aquatic Resources Education Center, operated by the Division of Fish and Wildlife, focuses on wetlands, fishing and other aquatic education themes.


Delaware’s White-Tailed Deer

White-tailed deer are one of the most important wildlife species managed in Delaware. Wildlife-watchers, photographers, and hunters flock to the state in pursuit of deer. They contribute millions of dollars each year to the state’s economy.


Delaware Wildlife Action Plan

The Division of Fish and Wildlife has created a Delaware Wildlife Action Plan to coordinate wildlife conservation practices in the 21st century.


Do Something Wild

Volunteer with the Division of Fish and Wildlife! The Division offers a variety of volunteer opportunities for individuals and groups, part of a larger, Department-wide network of volunteer opportunities.


Deer Damage Assistance

Many farmers report significant damage to their crops caused by deer. By combining non-lethal techniques with targeted harvest, farmers can reduce crop damage.


DuPont Nature Center at the Mispillion Harbor Reserve

The DuPont Nature Center is located in the beautiful Mispillion Harbor, where the Mispillion River and Cedar Creek meet and flow out into the Delaware Bay. It is a science-based educational and interpretive facility with interactive exhibits designed to connect people with the Delaware Bay’s natural history and ecology.


Eco-Explorers Field Trips

Eco-Explorers is a free field trip program designed for fifth grade students in Delaware. Participants visit the Aquatic Resources Education Center (AREC), where they experience and explore connections between plants and animals within a tidal salt marsh ecosystem.


Education & Outreach

The Division of Fish and Wildlife offers a variety of educational and outreach programs.


Gamefish & Freshwater Fishing Restrictions

Gamefish are found in either tidal or non-tidal freshwater in Delaware. Gamefish taken from Delaware waters cannot legally be sold, traded or bartered unless authorized by permit.


Invasive Aquatic Species

Delaware, along with other states in the Mid-Atlantic Region, has been invaded by non-native aquatic species that pose a threat to native species, to ecological processes, and to the economy.


Mosquito Control

DNREC’s Mosquito Control Section provides mosquito control services throughout Delaware to maintain quality of life and protect public health by reducing the possibility of mosquito-borne illnesses.


Operation Game Theft

The Operation Game Theft Fund was established by the Delaware General Assembly to assist in the apprehension and conviction of game law violators. Rewards of up to $1,000 are available for information leading to the arrest and conviction of violators.


Plants and Plant Communities

Delaware has more than 1,600 species of native plants. More than a quarter of them are rare and can be found in more than 100 different terrestrial and wetland habitat types.


Recreational Water Monitoring

The Department monitors recreational waters to protect the public. It tests for levels of Enterococci bacteria at all guarded, and several unguarded, public beaches during the swimming season. It tests several freshwater ponds for special events. High Enterococcus levels can mean there are other, potentially harmful, bacteria and viruses in the water. Use the map below to find the latest test results.


Shorebird Project

Shorebirds are an important part of the ecology of Delaware’s shorelines. But they are under threat; populations are declining. The Delaware Shorebird Project works to mitigate that threat, through research and monitoring, habitat protection, and management planning.


Shorebird Project Volunteer

Spring brings the shorebird migration season. The Delaware Shorebird Project needs experienced and dedicated volunteers for the field season each spring.


Waterfowl Surveys

Since 1974, the Division of Fish and Wildlife has conducted annual waterfowl surveys to measure long-term trends in duck and goose populations. The survey results help increase biologists’ knowledge about the state’s waterfowl populations and habitat and help the state make informed decisions about habitat management and hunting.

State Parks




Seasons, Guides, and Maps

The Division of Fish and Wildlife manages over 62,000 acres of Delaware land at 19 public wildlife areas that provide hunting opportunities as well as habitat for a variety of species. The state features a wide variety of fishing opportunities for every angler, from the Delaware River and Bay, to the ocean, to numerous ponds, streams, rivers, and tidal creeks.




Swimming

Designated swimming areas are accessible in Cape Henlopen, Delaware Seashore, and Fenwick Island.


Pets in the Parks

Delaware State Parks is pleased to welcome you and your pet to enjoy the great outdoors together. While in the park, a dog or cat poses a real danger to wildlife and may disturb other visitors. In order to help keep our parks open to pets, responsible pet ownership is the key.

National Wildlife Refuge



Bombay Hook

Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge protects one of the largest remaining expanses of tidal salt marsh in the mid-Atlantic region.


Prime Hook

Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge was officially established in 1963 “for use as an inviolate sanctuary, or for any other management purpose, for migratory birds".