Our next stop after New Bern was the small town of Bath, NC. Fortunately we were using GPS because the route was a series of confusing roads leading us way out into woods and marshes.
We drove along thinking the GPS was avoiding ferry rides and leading us north of the river. Instead, the ferry route option was on and it was actually taking us south to a ferry landing for the route between Bayview and Aurora, heading north across the Pimlico River.
We only figured out we were taking the ferry some miles away from the dock when we saw a sign telling us the times the ferry left, which was every two hours. Checking our phones, we had 15 minutes to get there or wait another few hours!
We flew along those flat country roads. Fortunately the ferry operators could see us coming from about a half mile out, and they either held the ferry or we got there just in time. The ferry left 30 seconds after our car was on it.
And what a fun ride it was. First of all, it was free. Secondly, it took about a half hour, which was just the right amount of time to enjoy the river, scenery and sunny day. Third, we had some fun conversation with a local delivery driver who couldn’t imagine why we would think Bath was an interesting stop.
It was altogether a fun and unexpected ride. We saw lots of birds but no alligators or even snakes.
I definitely recommend a ferry ride if you ever find yourself in the eastern part of NC. There are many ferries up and down the coast and they are noted on state maps. Ferry schedules are online, for those who actually plan these type of things in advance.
Photos of our unexpected ferry ride are below in the order that I took them. As always, they are enhanced with Picasa.