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Outer Banks national parks see record visitor levels during first 6 months of 2021

Tropical Weather Barrier Islands
Posted at 12:51 PM, Jul 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-23 12:51:19-04

The Outer Banks' three national parks experienced record visitor levels during the first six months of 2021.

According to the National Parks Service, Cape Hatteras National Seashore's visitation totals for January through June were 26% higher than the first six months of 2002, the busiest year on record.

More than a million people visited the seashore over the six-month period, with June alone seeing 447,760 visitors.

Visitation totals were also up at the Wright Brothers National Memorial and the Fort Raleigh National Historic Site - the fourth highest on record for the Wright memorial and seventh highest for Fort Raleigh.

All three parks reported a spike in visitors from 2019, with the seashore seeing 19% more, the Wright memorial seeing 21% more and Fort Raleigh seeing 22% more.

Amid elevated visitor levels, Outer Banks businesses have struggled to hire enough workers for the busy summer season.