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Accotink Bay Wildlife Refuge, Fort Belvoir


The 1,200-acre Accotink Bay Wildlife Refuge offers well-maintained trails through deciduous forests that descend to the bay below. An informational kiosk adjacent to the parking lot offers trail maps, a bird list and a guide to facilitated programs. The site’s forest attracts many interesting spring and fall migrants. Accotink Bay also attracts a variety of shorebirds, waterfowl and offers a hunting ground for nesting ospreys.

The refuge is open daily from dawn to dusk. A government identification or a daily visitor’s pass is required to access the installation. A valid picture ID must be presented at the Visitors Center to get a daily visitor’s pass.

Please note:  Security levels may change at any time and can affect installation access.


During the week, enter the installation through the Tulley Gate:

Follow US 1 South for 5.8 miles and turn left on Pohick Road, across from Backlick Road. There is a large Fort Belvoir sign at the intersection of US 1 and Pohick Road. Travel 0.4 miles and turn right into the first or second parking area.  The second parking area is the Visitor’s Center and the main trail head.  If you wish to go to Accotink Bay area or the Environmental Education Center you must get a visitor’s pass.

During weekends, enter the installation through the Pence Gate:

Follow US 1 South approximately 5.0 miles and turn left onto Belvoir Road. Proceed to 12th Street and make a right. Continue on 12th Street through the traffic light to Pohick Road. Proceed on Pohick Road to the refuge main entrance on the left. There is a large trail map at the entrance of the trail.

To visit the Accotink Bay Environmental Education Center (Note: the Center itself is only open for special appointments, but a trailhead is available):

From the refuge main entrance, after picking up a visitor’s pass, turn right out of the parking lot on Pohick Road. At the first traffic light, make a right onto Theote Road. Drive 0.6 miles and turn right on Warren Road. Proceed down the hill and make the first right onto Swift Road and then take the next right onto Little Road. The Environmental Education Center is ahead on the right, building #780. A trailhead is located at the end of Little Road. Accotink Bay will be on your left driving down Little Road to the trailhead.




Location & Directions

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Site Information

  • Site Contact: 703-806-0049
  • Website
  • Access: See description

Birds Recently Seen at Accotink Bay Wildlife Refuge, Fort Belvoir (as reported to eBird)

  • Canada Goose
  • Mourning Dove
  • Turkey Vulture
  • Osprey
  • Bald Eagle
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker
  • Pileated Woodpecker
  • American Crow
  • Fish Crow
  • Carolina Chickadee

Seasonal Bird Observations


  • Environmental Study Area
  • Accessible
  • Hiking Trails
  • Interpretive Nature Program
  • Interpretive Trail
  • Parking
  • Restrooms
  • Viewing Blinds