• Beach walkway to white sandy beach and bluegreen waters

    Gulf Islands

    National Seashore FL,MS

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  • Partial Closure on Horn Island

    Small portion of Horn Island, Mississippi, closed to entry due to discovery of asbestos and possible other bio hazards. Click on more for map and press release. More »

Santa Rosa Day Use Area

Blue sky, green clear water, white sandy beach and pavilions

Santa Rosa Area (Opal Beach) is a fragile barrier island made up largely of fine quartz sand held together by plants adapted to this harsh environment. It provides habitat for many shore birds, small animals and nesting sea turtles.

Facilities at Opal Beach are open daily from 8:00 to sunset. An entrance fee is charged at this area. Fees are good for seven days and can be used at other areas of Gulf Islands.

Santa Rosa is a pack-in and pack-out park so please keep our beaches clean. Glass containers and pets are not allowed on the beaches.

Picnic Shelters are available for general use on a first-come, first-serve basis, but you can also reserve Cluster A and E by calling 877-444-6777 or search www.recreation.gov

Did You Know?

A view of the Advanced Redoubt drawbridge.

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.