|DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS
DIVISION OF PARKS AND RECREATION
Estell Manor Park is located 3.5 miles south of Mays Landing on Route 50. It is bordered by the Great Egg Harbor River / South River to the east and by Route 50 to the west. In all, it is about 1700 acres large. This is Atlantic County Park System's most popular park and the Division of Parks and Recreation headquarters.
After the Native Americans, this was land owned by the Estell family and was the site of a glassworks in the 1800's, then became the site of a munitions plant during World War I. After 70 years, the forest has reclaimed this area, and is now home to an incredible diversity of plants and animals. CLICK HERE to visit our Historic Sites Page.
The Warren E. Fox Nature Center is located at this park. This is the headquarters for the park system and where most of our environmental education and recreation programs are held. There are environmental displays and live animal displays here. This is also the location for maps and brochures, restroom facilities, and environmental information.
Things to do at Estell Manor Park!
Camping - See Atlantic County Parks Camping Page for information and fees.
Boating - You can set your canoe / kayak off at the floating dock on Stephen's Creek or at the South River. You launch your boat into the South River from the North End of the park.
Picnics - We have pavilions you can reserve for large events, or use our grills and picnic tables for a family outing on a "first come, first serve" basis.
Exercise Trail- There is a 1.5 mile trail with exercise stations located just inside the Loop Road. The Loop Road is 2.2 miles and is paved. This is good or walking, jogging, and biking, but be aware that cars use this road also. CLICK HERE to view the park's Trail Map.
Softball / Soccer - We have a Soccer field and a Softball field for your use. You can use the softball field on "first come, first serve". Come into the Nature Center and we can lend you equipment for free.
Volleyball - We have sand courts available at both Picnic Areas 1 and 2. You can borrow a volleyball at the Nature Center.
Orienteering- map and compass courses permanently installed at Estell Manor for the beginner, intermediate, or expert. Instruction and loaners compasses are included in this 4 hour session offered free to the general public once a month, November through April . Also offered to schools, scouts and other groups by special arrangement, call for details.
Bicycle and Other Equipment Lending Program- During Nature Center hours, visitors to Estell Manor may borrow bikes and helmets, softball equipment, volleyballs, frisbees, jump ropes, horseshoes and soccer balls. An adult with a driver's license must accompany children borrowing equipment. Free! Children (under 14 years of age) riding bikes, roller blades or skates are required to wear helmets as per NJ State Law.
Cross-country Skiing - Most of our trails convert to cross-country skiing when it snows. Maps are located in the Nature Center. CLICK HERE to view the park's Trail Map.
Fishing- You can fish off the floating dock or on the South River. No license is needed, unless you fish in one of the fresh water ponds.
Mountain Biking - You may mountain bike on any of the trails, but be careful with your tire tracks and be careful on the bridges. We can lend you a bike for free, if you leave a copy of your license at the Nature Center. Bicycles are not permitted on the Swamp Trail Boardwalk. Note that dirt bikes and ATV's are not allowed in our parks. CLICK HERE to view the park's Trail Map.
Hiking - We have about 20 miles of trails, going through all types of habitats. The trails are not too sandy, are on flat terrain, and are sometimes pretty wet (beavers and wetlands). CLICK HERE to view the park's Trail Map.
Swamp Trail Boardwalk - The Swamp Trail Boardwalk is a 1.8 mile fully accessible elevated wooden nature trail that crosses some of the most beautiful areas of the Park. It starts directly behind the Nature Center and goes all the way to Artesian Well Rd. Along the way you will see streams, a cedar swamp, coastal forest, ruins of the Bethlehem Loading Company, and 2 bump outs that take you right to magnificent views of South River. There is also a boardwalk extension that leads to Oak Ridge Trail.
Nature Study - We offer excellent opportunities for bird watching, wildlife watching, plant identifying, ecosystem studying, and just plain enjoying. Some sightings may include bald eagles, otters, red foxes, beavers, yellow-bellied sapsucker, swamp pink, spatulate leaf sundew, and many others. There are many different habitats at Atlantic County Park in Estell Manor, which creates such a diverse selection of plant- and wildlife. We offer a couple observation areas, and you can borrow camouflage netting for three of the observation booths. Also, visit the W. E. Fox Nature Center for an environmental learning experience.
Photography- Atlantic County Park in Estell Manor is an excellent photo opportunity. See descriptions above.
We offer a wide diversity of programs here, given by park staff. See the Calendar of Events to see what's going on. Some examples include History Hikes, Little Learners’ Craft classes, Little Learners’ Nature classes and Orienteering.
Hunting - Only shotgun hunting is allowed in this park, and is restricted to the North End on state mandated shotgun hunting days. Patrons are warned about these days by posted signs.