Welcome to the world's whitest beaches! Relax and enjoy the scenery, hike a trail or explore beautiful historic brick forts. Whether you visit the Seashore for a day or a week there are many activities and places to explore. Choose from swimming,bicycling, snorkeling, fishing, hiking, beach combing, bird watching, boating, camping in a developed campground or primitive camping. Or, sit back and watch a magnificent Florida sunset!
In the Florida District, Ranger Programs are available.Visitor Centers are located at Naval Live Oaks, Fort Pickens, and Fort Barrancas. There are trails at Naval Live Oaks including the historic Andrew Jackson Trail and a 2-mile section of the the 40-mile loop multi-use trail. The Santa Rosa Day Area, Opal Beach is located on Hwy 399 east of Pensacola Beach. There are restrooms, outdoor showers, picnic tables, and pavilions. The Perdido Key area has restrooms and access to Johnson Beach. The Okaloosa Day Use Area on U. S. 98 near Fort Walton has quiet water, picnic tables, boat launch, parking, and restrooms with outdoor showers. On board Pensacola Naval Air Station, visitors can tour Fort Barrancas or the Advanced Redoubt, and hike two trails. Fort Pickens is open from 7:00 a.m. until sunset. Pensacola, Florida, the City of Five Flags, is the closest city to the Gulf Islands National Seashore. Pensacola is the home of the Blue Angels based at the Pensacola Naval Air Station. Sites to visit include the National Museum of Naval Aviation, Pensacola's Museum of Art, the Civil War Museum, and Historic Pensacola Village. Parades, fairs and festivals occur all year including Mardi Gras festivities. Other types of entertainment include the civic center, golf courses, many movie theaters, a zoo, skate parks, go-cart tracks and amusement parks. There are facilities that rent boats, kayaks, canoes and have charters for sightseeing, fishing and diving. Visit the Pensacola Visitor Center at www.visitpensacola.com or call 1-800-874-1234.
Did You Know?
The Third System fortifications consisted of 42 forts built between 1816 and 1870. They were used to guard all the principal harbors, rivers, and naval yards of the United States. Only the Advanced Redoubt of Fort Barrancas at Gulf Islands National Seashore was built entirely for land defense.