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“The best kayaking and the most wildlife in Delaware in a beautiful little park”

Trap Pond State Park
Ranked #55 of 368 things to do in Delaware
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Newark, Delaware
Level Contributor
69 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 136 helpful votes
“The best kayaking and the most wildlife in Delaware in a beautiful little park”
Reviewed September 12, 2011

We have gone down as a couple the last two Septembers and really enjoy it, but we will definitely bring the kids next time as they would love it, too. First, what stands out the most is kayaking the narrow stretch of creek above the pond. It evokes a very special feeling, being in a quiet narrow maze of water pathways and weaving between bald cypress trees. There are needed yellow signs with arrows attached to trees so you can avoid dead ends and easily getting lost. The park trail map is so misleading in that it does not show any of these narrow waterways. I think most people do not know what is back there. With all the rain, we could easily paddle under the footbridge where the trail crosses over. It feels like being in Florida, but with no worry of alligators. It is a decent 20 minute kayak across the open lake to get to this area, but the shade and serenity quickly rewards you. You will definitely see some of the many turtles perching on branches sticking out of the water as well as many of the larger birds like the Great Blue Heron. Last year, we saw a couple water snakes swimming around, but we only saw them on land this year. I recommend taking the tour boat first which takes you back to the start of the water trail and will show you what to look for.

The main trail around the pond is nice, diverse, and surprisingly fun for a graveled mostly sidewalk-width trail. We mountain bike more technical trails but this is just windy and fast and pleasant. A young child could easily bike it, but older kids, like us, can still have fun, too by going fast. Crossing the river trail on a really nice bridge is cool, but you do not get the same feeling as being on the water.

We saw a few non-poisonous snakes and a bunch of small cute lizards by our yurt and elsewhere. At one point, we accidently left peanut butter out and a squirrel evidently put up quite a fight to get into it, but the other wildlife never came near our food. Mosquitos can be bad, but our citronella candle and occasional bug spray did fine.

Last year we had a cabin and this year a yurt. Both are nice and very near the water adjacent to the RV loops. There is a parking area with wheelbarrows for you to unload and transfer 50 yards or so. The yurts are like a thick tent material in a circular shape with some wood beams to hold it up. There is a dome moon/sunlight at the top with a ceiling fan. It was only 80 degrees or so this year and the sun coming in the top still made it significantly hotter inside...would be tough if 90 plus. Windows roll down like a tent from the outside to reveal screened windows and the AC works decently with windows shut. The cabins are more like log homes with real windows, but still without bathrooms. The yurts have a nice deck with a great view while the cabins have a screened-in area. The yurt is a large open space, while the cabins have two rooms. Both have AC but only the cabins have fridges. The yurts and some of the cabins have lake-front views.
A potty is a minute walk from all of them and the bathhouse is 5 minutes.

If tent camping, I would not stay in one of the RV sites as they are all close together in a more open area. There are much nicer sites like the "island tent sites" and more wooded ones as well.

We got lucky on one night as there was some concert at the nature center across the way, which we could comfortably listen to on our deck at sunset. On the next night, but drove 15 minutes to Laurel and the Georgia House. A few days earlier, we ordered everything we wanted with extra sides and chose our pick-up time all online. We showed up, it was ready, we payed, which was actually less than what we were quoted, and drove back to the yurt. It was still hot when we made it back to our deck for a beautiful sunset meal. It was awesome. The mashed potatoes were phenomenal. Ribs, wrap, and vegetables were also good.

The new nature center is a unique, nice-looking building with some quick interesting exhibits.

The only drawback to Trap Pond is that their is no swimming. It is always a bit sad to be so aware that we cannot swim or eat fish in Delaware fresh water. I hope we will be able to some day if things start changing. There was once talk about a pool being built there, but it would be nice If they just offered an inflatable water slide or something.

Visited September 2011
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6 Thank BBnugget
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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81 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Wilmington, Delaware
Level Contributor
31 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
“Not Great for Tents”
Reviewed July 5, 2011

We usually campe in a park in Northern Delaware, and occasionally at Cape Henlopen. This was our first time at Trap Pond.

First, the positive. There were great programs to entertain everyone, including pontoon boat tours. We ere close enough to the ocean to enjoy a day at the beach. Also, there were several charming small towns nearby, one of which was hosting a Independence Day parade and carnival that perfectly fit the holiday. Walmart was a short drive away, which came in very handy when we realized we had left a set of tent poles at home.

Tent camping here was rough. Everyone around us had full sized RV's, and the sites were very small. It felt like our tent was set up in a traffic jam. The people were friendly and welcoming, but my preteen was very nervous about getting dressed and people were constantly cutting through our site. Keep in mind that the sites are set up like a parking lot, with back-to-back rows of sites surrounded by road. I think there may be larger sites on the far end, but then you are a hike away from the bathroom and playground,

Another downside was the ground cover. The trees are beautiful tall trees, but the soil is dirty, sticky sand. The kids were a lovely shade of gray within an hour and the tents were impossible to keep clean, both inside and out. Since there are so many RVs, the shower house was nearly empty. But, as soon as you washed off the bug repellant, the biting flies descended.

I will be very careful selecting a site if I camp here again, and I may borrow a camper from a friend to stay off the ground.

Visited July 2011
Helpful?
7 Thank MacyLynn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wilmington, Delaware
Level Contributor
46 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
“Trap Pond is an excellent rustic camping experience to get away.”
Reviewed April 29, 2011

I stayed in one of the Mini-Cabins at Trap Pond over Spring Break and had an excellent experience. Trap Pond offers many activities whether you are camping there or just visiting.

To clear up the same confusion I had when booking, the Mini-Cabins do not have stoves, bathrooms, or any running water (plumbing). The Mini-Cabins consist of a screened porch, a main room, and a bedroom. The screened in porch has a log bench on it. The screen door wouldn't stay closed (no latch or lock) when it was windy outside and it repeatedly slammed close so I had to tie it closed at night.

The main room as you walk in has a mini-fridge (medium sized), an 8000 BTU window air conditioner, two installed heaters on each side, a small set of shelves, and a table with two chairs and a bench. The main room also has a ladder up to a loft for storage.

The bedroom has bunk beds with stuffed mattresses and a full-sized bed. The bedroom also has an installed heater. The beds are fixed to the walls and the room is only as deep as the beds.

Each camp site has its own fire pit/grill and picnic table outside. The cabins/yurts on the pond-front also have trails to the pond to park a boat.

Without running water, I had to wash my dishes in the shower in the bath house. There is a bathroom closer to the cabins but it has no running water, substituting a hand sanitizer dispenser. This bathroom is really only a glorified porta-potty. The bathhouse is about a three minute walk from the cabins and has three shower stalls. The only issue I had with my stay at Trap was the cleanliness of the bath facilities. Both bathrooms smelled worse than expected and had bugs all over. The floor of the bath house was usually very dirty.

As far as attractions, the Pond has many activities. There are many trails to follow if you're a bicyclist or an athlete. They offer free 2 hour bicycle rentals. On the side of the pond opposite the cabins, you can rent a rowboat, kayak, canoe, or pedal boat for different hourly or daily rates (rowboat being the cheapest). There is some good fishing at the pond and I saw a few people catch some decent sized fish. Swimming in the pond is not allowed or advisable. If you have a rainy day, the Rehoboth Shopping outlets are only 1 hour East on Rt. 24. The Delmarva Shorebirds Minor League Baseball Team was only a half hour drive South to Salisbury, MD. The US-13 Dragway and Speedway is 15 minutes away as well. It's easy to find restaurants and good Chesapeake seafood nearby (Bayview on 13).

Overall, the experience was excellent. I have heard that Killens Pond State Park is nicer but Trap Pond is cheaper and has more available reservations.

Visited April 2011
Helpful?
7 Thank manchester88
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rehoboth Beach, Delaware
Level Contributor
19 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Beautiful nature trails”
Reviewed April 10, 2011

If you like walks that give the opportunity from frequent changes in landscape; woods, swamp (don't worry a nice footbridge over the marshy areas), meadows, and frequent water views, this park is for you. You may also bike on the trail. Just a word of warning; every time I have walked around the pond, I see a blacksnake, so be careful where you step.

Visited April 2011
Helpful?
3 Thank JoEllen W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexandria, Virginia
Level Contributor
18 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Excellent campground!”
Reviewed October 16, 2010

This is my favorite Delaware State Park campground. We stayed there in September in a travel trailer as part of a large rally group. The park staff were wonderful to work with, and very accommodating.

The park and campground is beautiful. The sites are spacious, and there's plenty of shade. Like many state parks, the rest room/showers were dated, but clean. There is a huge pavilion and playground on 'B' Loop. The campground is next to one of the most beautiful ponds in the region. Each loop has its own small pier that's perfect for launching a canoe or kayak. The park and campground was very quiet and orderly.

PROS:
Beautiful park.
Great staff.
Electric and water hookups.
Reasonable rates.

CONS:
None.

Helpful?
4 Thank RoadsideJustice
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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