The Lure of the Islands in the Gulf of Mexico

What is it that entices people to the sea?  Poet John Masefield wrote, “I must go down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied.”  Millions of visitors are drawn to the islands in the northern Gulf of Mexico for the white sandy beaches, the aquamarine waters, a boat ride, a camping spot, a tour of an old fort, or a place to fish. 

Two tents behind a picnic table beneath shady trees.

Campgrounds Recovery Plan

The national seashore is increasing recreational access to the campground, learn more about the plan.

A safety poster sites at the arched entrance to a masonry fort.

Recreate Responsibly

Join the #RecreateResponsibly movement to protect America's treasures while looking out for each other's health and safety.

A sign reading road may flood stands next to a road along a beach.

Temporary Closures

Temporary road and other closures happen from time to time throughout the park. Visit this page to learn more.

Visitors walk toward the camera down the dock at Ship Island.

Ship Island Excursions

Passenger ferry service is available seasonally from mid-March through October.

A large white ferry ships sits just off shore from a large masonry fort.

Pensacola Bay Cruises

Head to Fort Pickens or explore the bay on Pensacola Bay Cruises. Ships run seasonally from March through October.

Several people sit in a small tram, a ferry boat can be seen in the background.

Fort Pickens Tram Service

FREE service for getting around to all the best stuff at the Fort Pickens Area.

A ranger examines a park pass from an entrance gate window.

Entrance Fees

Entrance fees are required for most Gulf Islands National Seashore areas and are good for one to seven consecutive days.

A park ranger stands in front of a patrol SUV just in front of a beach.

Park Rules & Regulations

You are responsible to know the rules and regulations of the national seashore prior to your visit.

A pile of gear sites on a sandy beach.

Park Safety

The national seashore can be a challenging location, plan ahead to be prepared for your trip.

Last updated: August 28, 2020

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

1801 Gulf Breeze Parkway
Gulf Breeze, FL 32563


(850) 934-2600

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