Find Serentiy at St. George Island State Park!
If you are looking for a pristine beach oasis that has changed little over the centuries, look no further than the ever gorgeous and perfectly preserved St. George Island State Park! This little barrier island south west of town includes 9 miles of undeveloped Florida beach, with not a single condo or sky rise to obstruct the already perfect view. There are ample opportunities for a wide variety of outdoor pursuits: swimming, canoeing or kayaking, camping (both primitive and full-facility), shelling, hiking. It truly is an amazing place and it is practically in our own backyard!
When I head out to St. George Island State Park, I go knowing this will be a day long affair. I cram the cooler full of sandwiches, fruits, veggies and cold water. Nothing like a day at the beach to work up a ravenous appetite! Recently, my daughter and I visited with some friends and we took time to squeeze in some learning opportunities. To aid in kiddo exploration, I brought a magnifying glass, binoculars, bird and shell ID guides, our outdoor watercolor painting materials, and, but of course, plenty of sand toys. These, along with the incredible environment, resulted in 7 glorious hours in this incredible place.
When at the state park, keep an eye out for Florida’s diverse fauna. Shore birds such as the snowy plover, least tern, black skimmer and willet nest in the dunes over the summer. Sea turtles are known for nesting on the shores as well! Dolphin pods can commonly be found in the cool blue waters.
Before you head home from your day at the beach, take a few minutes to explore the 1 mile long East Slough Trail which can be found across the street from the East Slough Beach Use Area. This trail features boardwalks that bring one through the towering dunes and into the salt marshes filled with looming pine trees. The view over the St. George Sound is utterly breathtaking and the gentle sound of the wind bending and blowing through the trees is sure to refresh the soul.
Before you head out for your adventure on St. George Island State Park, be sure you have your park fee of $6 per vehicle ready. The park is open 8am to sun down, 365 days a year and there are bathroom and showering facilities. For more information, check out the park page here.