• Beach walkway to white sandy beach and bluegreen waters

    Gulf Islands

    National Seashore FL,MS

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Santa Rosa Day Use Area

Covered picnic table  with beach in background

Pavilion at Opal Beach Area

Santa Rosa Area (Opal Beach) is located in between Navarre Beach and Pensacola Beach on the Santa Rosa Island, J Earle Bowden Way/Santa Rosa Highway/Highway 399.

Santa Rosa, part of Gulf Islands National Seashore, 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 shorebirds, small animals and nesting sea turtles. the grass beds of the sound are the nursery ground of 95% of all commercially harvested marine species.

Facilities at Opal Beach are open daily from 8:00 a.m. to sunset. An entrance fee is charged for visitors to Opal Beach year round.

Picnic Shelters are at Opal Beach. Pavilion Cluster B, C, D and F are available for general use on first-come, first-served basis. Clusters A and E may be reserved by calling (850)934-2605 or email www.sherrill_gray@nps.gov.

It is a seven mile hike from the west end to the east end. Visitors can enjoy fishing, bird watching, shell collecting, swimming, or photography.

Did You Know?

Murray Dorty, an African-American Union Civil War re-enactor, stands at attention inside Fort Massachusetts.

The 2nd Regiment of Louisiana Native Guards trained on Ship Island and became the first black unit on April 9, 1863 on the Gulf Frontier. They met Confederate forces in battle during a raid on Pascagoula, MS.