Self-Guided Tours

steps to God's Acre

Historic Bethabara Park maintains an active natural history program to explore the theme of man and his environment from 1753 to the present.

See Historic Bethabara Park at your own pace - enjoy a leisurely walk on the grounds. 

Because Historic Bethabara has the fascinating flora and fauna inventories that Christian Reuter, North Carolina's first forest ranger, made here in the 1750s and 60s, we can explore the connection between man and his environment for a 250-year period. The contrast between the Moravian sensitivity to their natural environment and our contemporary one is instructive. Reuter's inventories and his maps provide Park staff guidance for the preservation and restoration of the natural environment within the 175-acre wildlife preserve as well as the basis for a fascinating educational program.

We have preserved many sensitive areas including lowland stands of native wildflowers, an Eastern floodplain forest, several stream and creek environments, a natural bog garden and a six-acre wetland containing Beaver, otter, mink and muskrat. The Audubon Society has inventoried 129 kinds of birds in the Park, annually. These resources form the basis of our environmental educational programs illustrating Bethabara´s natural and cultural history through the centuries. The education programs include three 10-kilometer natural and cultural history trails and faculty-led tours of the Wildlife Preserve, using NC Wild Education materials and equipment.

Preservation projects:

183-acre wildlife preserve with beaver, otter, mink, fox and deer; 129 kinds of birds, annually, as well as and many unusual and exotic native flora.

  • Floodplain wildflowers under study
  • Eastern floodplain forest
  • Upland pine and hardwood forest
  • Several creeks and streams
  • A natural bog garden
  • A six-acre wetland and beaver pond

We have trail maps available for printing

Historic Maps

Historic Map - English [pdf/1mb/2p] 

Historic Map - French [pdf/448kb/2p] 

Historic Map - German [pdf/982kb/2p]

Historic Map - Spanish [pdf/660kb/2p] 

GIS Maps

Historic Bethabara Park is indebted to Chris Weavil, CGM, Facilities Management Division, Tanglewood Park, for his invaluable assistance in sharing his expertise and providing access to the GIS equipment and mapping software that allowed Park staff to produce the following maps: 

Historic Bethabara Park Legend [pdf/17kb/1p]

Historic Area GIS Map [pdf/206kb/1p] 

Overview West Side GIS Map [pdf/168kb/1p] 

Overview East Side GIS Map [pdf/186kb/1p] 

Garden Map

Medical Garden Map [pdf/320kb/2p] 

Trail Maps

Mill Creek Loop Map [pdf/290kb/2p] 

Woodland Trail Map [pdf/344kb/2p]

We offer a Field Guide for purchase in the Gift Shop to enhance your experience. 

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