Flag Ponds Nature Park Beach

Flags Ponds Nature Park has a huge sandy, natural, swimming beach known for sharks teeth and other fossils found on the shoreline. It’s an excellent beach for families, and dogs are allowed (on a leash).

1525 Flag Ponds Parkway, Lusby, MD 20657

Flag Ponds Nature Park beach is formed by a sandbar that swirls around a stub of land poking into the Chesapeake Bay. The beach is the entire arm of whitish sand that you see in the map (above) and it’s constantly changing shape depending on the tides, storms and time of year. Because of all that sand, the water is amazingly clear. 

The beach is about the size of a baseball field; picture a square beach with rounded corners. In the middle of the sandy area are a couple small tidal ponds. Be prepared to cross small streams flowing from the ponds.

One side of the beach curves toward cliffs. It narrows on the other side to curve around woods and out of sight.

The fishing pier is about a 5-minute walk down a mainly boardwalk path from the bathhouse. It’s a good way to see the beach if you don’t want to walk on sand. There’s a number of benches on the pier. A tidal/saltwater license is required to fish off the pier.

The water tends to be shallow around the beach and because it’s a nature preserve, the sand is covered with shells, driftwood and the occasional sharks teeth. 

All that makes it a popular family beach, especially for young families. The park keeps forgotten-toys in a container for other kids to use.

Beach-toy container at Flag Ponds Nature Park beach, Lusby, MD
Beach-toy container at entrance to Flag Ponds beach. Toys must be return when leaving the beach.

The entrance  to Flag Ponds beach is easy to miss. Keep an eye out for the brown park sign. The narrow road takes you down a hill, and through woods, to the visitor center/picnic/parking area. You must park in that parking lot, or the overflow lot just above it.

There’s no parking closer to the beach, unless you have a handicapped tag. Closer to the beach, there are two handicapped spaces, perhaps three if the cars squeeze. The turn-around is small, so don’t go down to sightsee.

The visitor center is a lodge with a fireplace and limited displays. It has a white board for visitors to write the fossils they’ve found during the visit. Restrooms are outside center. The nearby grassy, tree-covered picnic area has tables, grills and a playground.

It’s a half-mile walk to get to beach. You start down the asphalt road and turn off onto a gravel road. There’s a hill at the beginning of the gravel road which makes a rolling cooler a bit challenging. But it’s a shady walk through forest the rest of the way.

A half-mile hike through woods brings you to the sandy beach, or you can take longer trail routes that allow you to experience the beauty of the park.

At the bottom of the hill, you’ll pass the handicapped parking spots next to the foundation of fisherman’s shanty. Off to the side of the road, there’s a boardwalk trail, about one person wide, that goes into the marsh, past a pound-net display, to a pond. But to get to the beach continue down the road.

There’s a bathhouse at the end of the road, just inside the woods, with restrooms and an outdoor shower for rinsing off. The trail splits in two at the bathhouse. One path leads to the fishing pier and the other to the beach. It’s well marked.

Flag Ponds Nature Preserve bath hour
Bathhouse just before you get to the Flag Ponds beach.

Another 5-minute walk toward the beach and the woods open-up into a huge sandy area.

There is an entrance fee: April – October. They do not accept credit cards. Checks or cash only, exact change is appreciated. 

NOTICE: Due to high volume of visitation on weekends and holidays, expect temporary closures and delays for vehicular entry into the park.

Park Office: 410-586-1477
Reservations: 410-535-5327
All groups of 30 or more must make advance reservations. Groups without a reservation will be turned away at the gate.


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