MCRD Parris Island
6th Marine Corps District (6MCD),
Headquarters & Service Battalion (H&SBN),
Recruit Training Regiment (RTR),
Weapons & Field Training Battalion (WFTBN)
923 Chosin Resevoir Road, Parris Island, SC 29905
MCRD Parris Island is located on Parris Island and several smaller islands approximately 4 miles south of the City of Beaufort, South Carolina. Beaufort is a high cost military town, which is home to three different military installations. The primary activity at MCRD is the training of Marine Corps recruits. The facility covers more than 8,000 acres, including more than 4,000 acres of salt marsh and tidal streams.
Parris Island has a long history of colonization. Many attempts were made at permanent settlement between 1526 and 1722. The first successful attempt was made by the French in 1562, followed by the Spanish and finally the British. After the Revolutionary War, Parris Island plantations began to grow cotton instead of indigo. During the Civil War, the island became a coaling station for the Union Navy.
On Nov. 1, 1915, Parris Island was officially designated a Marine Corps Recruit Depot. Since 1915, Parris Island’s primary mission is to train new Marines. Over a million men and women have trained at the Depot, and have served the United States all over the globe. The causeway was dedicated as the General E. A. Pollock Memorial Causeway in April 1984.
MCRD’s mission – We make Marines by recruiting quality young men and women and transforming them through the foundations of rigorous basic training, our shared legacy, and a commitment to our core values, preparing them to win our nation’s battles in service to the country.
Arriving at MCRD Parris Island
Both Charleston International Airport and/or Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport are options for arriving close to base.
From Charleston International Airport To MCRD Parris Island: Leaving the airport, get on I-526 (Mark Clark Expressway) heading South. When I-526 ends, take a right at the stop light. This will put you on US17 South. When you come to Jacksonboro, you will veer to the left (still on US17 South) – following signs to Beaufort. Stay on US17 for approximately 50 miles altogether. At Garden’s Corner, take a left onto Hwy 21 South toward Beaufort. Take a right on Parris Island Gateway (Hwy 802). Follow Hwy 802 until the exit for MCRD Parris Island.
From Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport or from I-95 Northbound – leaving the airport, get on I-95 North. Take Exit 8, Beaufort/Hilton Head to the right. Take a left toward Beaufort on Hwy 170. After crossing Board River Bridge, merge to the right on Savannah Hwy. Then merge right onto Hwy 802, Parris Island Gateway. Take the exit to MCRD Parris Island.
Access to the Depot is structured on Thursdays and Fridays of graduation weeks in order to accommodate the large number of visitors. Please follow the directions of the PMO Marines at the entrance gate in order to assure the most expeditious access to the base. Also, be advised that the Provost Marshal’s Office rigorously enforces traffic regulations aboard the Depot, please adhere to speed limits and make complete stops at marked intersections.
All personnel reporting to Parris Island for duty during normal working hours, Monday through Friday, 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., will report to the Installation Personnel Administration Administration Center (IPAC), Building 923.
After working hours, on weekends and holidays, please report to the Headquarters and Service Battalion Officer of the Day in Building 144.
To assist in navigating Parris Island, a FREE tram service is offered to and from major locations on base during our peak hours only on graduation weeks. Please look for the tram stop identification signs and wait there for pick-up and drop-off. There are no shuttles or public transportation from Charleston International Airport or Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport to MCRD Parris Island. If you need transportation from either airport upon arrival, please contact the Depot Officer of the Day at 843-228-3712.
There are over 2,560 active duty, military families, DoD personnel, civilians, and retirees assigned to MCRD Parris Island.