Interpretive & Nature Centers

Located approximately seven miles from the main gate, just past a curve in the road, is a pair of white buildings known as 112. Originally built as a lifesaving station, the buildings have been renovated and now house the Interpretive & Nature Centers.

  • The Interpretive Center focuses mainly on the historical aspects of IBSP but also contains the Emily DeCamp Herbarium Collection and the Osprey Cam!. The herbarium is an impressive collection of preserved plants stored, catalogued, and arranged systematically for use by professionals and amateurs from many walks of life!!   The Osprey Cam, donated by the Friends of Island Beach State Park, can be viewed at the Interpretive Center.


  • The Nature Center offers visitors the chance to learn about the unique ecosystem found at IBSP!  See live animal exhibits, educational displays, view the osprey in its nest and dont miss the amazing 360 degree views of the Atlantic Ocean and Barnegat Bay.

Just past the two buildings is a self-guided nature trail that meanders eastward to the beach and westward towards the bay. Head east in a thicket of windswept shadbushes and blueberry bushes that dwarf the hiker. If you listen, you can hear several types of birds that call the thicket their home. As you change elevation, you begin to hear the sound of the surf reminding you that you are near the ocean. When you come out from under the canopy of vegetation, walk a little further and you have reached the secondary dune.