Gulf Islands National Seashore, Pensacola Beach

4.9
Must see · Beach · Nature / Park
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Visit the undeveloped land and shores of Gulf Islands National Seashore. The islands offer fun in the sun to visitors and preserved land for coastal species. You'll find the quartz-white sand and clear waters here. Stroll the nature trails to see forts dating back to the 18th century. Fort Massachusetts, Fort Barrancas, Fort Pickens, and Fort McRee are all on the islands. Each has its own visitor center and picnic area. For a longer walk, take the famed Andrew Jackson trail, part of a 64.4 km (40 mi) loop available to hikers, bikers, and cars. Head to Pensacola, the mainland city with a rich cultural and military history, to rent equipment for snorkeling, fishing, and boating. Many of the beaches feature restrooms, showers, and shaded areas. If you plan to visit more than one national park during your trip, consider purchasing an America the Beautiful pass that can be used at all national parks and federal lands in the United States. Put Gulf Islands National Seashore at the forefront of your travel plans using our Pensacola Beach trip website.
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Gulf Islands National Seashore reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
1,269 reviews
Google
4.9
TripAdvisor
  • If you're goal is to head to a virtually untouched-by-man white sand seashore, with virtually nothing around for miles, this is it. There are a couple of small parking areas with bathrooms, but... 
    If you're goal is to head to a virtually untouched-by-man white sand seashore, with virtually nothing around for miles, this is it. There are a couple of small parking areas with bathrooms, but...  more »
  • I spent a Saturday afternoon just west of Opal Beach with 12-15 other beach goers. We all had plenty of space to enjoy the clear waters. If you enjoy wading a couple of hundred feet out into the gulf....  more
    I spent a Saturday afternoon just west of Opal Beach with 12-15 other beach goers. We all had plenty of space to enjoy the clear waters. If you enjoy wading a couple of hundred feet out into the gulf....  more »
  • The parking issue here means that you have to be dropped off here by someone with military identification. I found this place boring. 
    The parking issue here means that you have to be dropped off here by someone with military identification. I found this place boring.  more »
Google
  • Can’t say enough about the Fort Pickens area of Gulf Islands NS. Outstanding beaches. Very clean, well maintained. Fort Pickens, excellent historical landmark. Water quality, it was insanely clear while we were visiting. Wildlife, we saw a bald eagle, dolphins, numerous other bird species, fish, crabs, sting rays, at every turn wildlife! Bicycling, I brought my bike and got to ride, tarmac in the park isn’t the smoothest but gorgeous views and cars within the park respectful. When we return we plan to camp, bring our outdoor gear for fishing, kayaking, etc & take advantage of this gem on the gulf coast.
  • This beautiful beach and National Seashore is right up there with our most favorite place, Ocracoke Island, also National seashore along the Outer Banks of NC. I love the sunsets on the Gulf here at Fort Pickens and the white sand and clear, calmer water. My husband misses the Atlantic waves he loves to ride, but he loves it here, too!
  • One of the most beautiful beaches in Florida in my humble opinion. Get the weekly pass when you first arrive. Saw all sorts of sea creatures while we were there. Rays, crabs, dolphins and a wide array of fish.
  • This is an absolute must in Pensacola. All throughout the day you will see wildlife and a prestine beach stretching for miles with clear water. The park does not allow dogs on the beach.
  • Beautiful national seashore. If you're going to come to Pensacola beach, I recommend coming here instead of staying at the crowded parts with all the resorts and hotels. Nothing beats pristine and undeveloped white sandy beach. There are also a fort and some hiking trails if you are not a beach person

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