The state-run car ferry system operates 22 ferries on seven regular routes over five bodies of water: Currituck and Pamlico sounds and the Cape Fear, Neuse, and Pamlico rivers. Emergency routes are also provided when storms damage the main coastal highways. The North Carolina Department of Transportation's ferry information line and website have full details. There's a charge for most ferries, but the Hatteras-Ocracoke ferry is free.
North Carolina Department of Transportation Ferry Division. North Carolina. 800/293–3779; www.ncdot.gov/ferry.
Island Ferry Adventures. 610 Front St., Beaufort, North Carolina, 28516. 252/728–4129; www.islandferryadventures.com.