What to do in St George Island State Park

Occupying 1,962 acres at the end of a long, narrow barrier island, St. George is a combination of sandy coves, salt marshes, shady pines and oak forests. During most of its 5,000 years of existence, St. George Island was uninhabited by man. During the early and middle 1900s, the island's pine forests were turpentined. Many scars are still visible on the island's larger slash pines. During World War II, the island was used by troops for numerous training exercises that were carried out over the area's vast dunes. Acquisition of land for the park in 1963 and completion of the causeway in 1965 led to increased use of the beaches for recreational activity. In 1980, construction of the park facilities was complete, and the park was opened for public use.

Today, the natural features of the park include extensive beaches and dunes, forests of slash pines and live oak hammocks. The ocean and bay support an abundance of marine life, while small freshwater ponds and sloughs provide a limited aquatic habitat in an otherwise arid climate. The waters of this area are some of the most productive commercial and sport fisheries in Florida, with a thriving oyster industry at the mouth of the Apalachicola River.

St. George is a thin barrier island flanked by Apalachicola Bay on the north and the Gulf of Mexico on the south. Habitats include sand scrub, pinelands, dunes, and beaches. A causeway was constructed in 1965 resulting in numerous tourists from surrounding communities, around the state, and even worldwide.

Upon entering the park, visitors will find a short spur road to the left carrying them to East Cove where a boat ramp, picnic grove and restrooms are located. On the tip of the peninsula, a youth / group area accommodates 25 persons.

Another boat ramp is found along the main park road just down from East Cove. Both launches put in on Apalachicola Bay. From beginning to end, the park road is 4 miles. In the off-season or during less crowded periods, visitors enjoy the road for biking and in-line skating.

At the eastern end of the park, a gated entrance requires permit access. Four-wheel drives are necessary to negotiate through the sands. Permits are obtained from the park rangers.

A number of day use areas are provided for picnickers, swimmers and anglers. Picnic pavilions are placed in several locations, everyone quite lovely. Strategically placed boardwalks assist beachgoers.

Beachcombing is fabulous at the park. Natural treasurers include coquina, slipper shells, sea pens, whelks, and more. Shorebirds are abundant too. Brown pelicans fly in formation then take a tumbling crash into the water in search of food. Sanderlings, willets, terns, and countless gulls join the many sunbathers, surf anglers, swimmers, and wind surfers.

A campground along with a primitive site are connected via a hiking trail.

Recreation
Visitors to St. George Island State Park enjoy the park's centerpiece, 9 miles of gorgeous coastline. Developed amenities provide for camping, hiking, canoeing, boating, fishing, and swimming. In-line skating is also enjoyed.

Location
St. George Island is located on St. George Island, 10 miles southeast of Eastpoint, off U.S. Highway 98.

Climate
The panhandle area of Florida experiences mild, comfortable winters and warm to hot, humid summers. The average summer temperatures reach well above 83 degrees Fahrenheit (above 29 Celsius). Winters are mild with temperatures averaging below 52 degrees Fahrenheit (below 11 Celsius). The average precipitation for the panhandle area is more than 60 inches per year. August and September are peak months of the hurricane season that lasts from June 1 through November 30.

Address
1900 E. Gulf Beach Drive
St. George Island, FL 32328

Phone: 850-927-2111

  • St George Island State Park Travel Q&A

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