Final up to date on June 24th, 2022 at 08:56 am
It’s simple to discover a seaside in South Florida. It’s tougher to discover a secluded seaside, a seaside the place you expertise a way of discovery and scrumptious isolation.
As soon as upon a time, South Florida was stuffed with hidden seashores. However then we moved right here – tens of millions and tens of millions of us.
So now it takes some effort to discover a wild, secluded, quiet seaside in Florida.
Over a few years, I’ve discovered six particular quiet seashores in Florida, and as I walked the sands at every one, I admit, I've been tempted to maintain the invention to myself. (Don’t inform anybody about these, OK? )
Three of those secluded seashores are an journey to succeed in (they will solely be accessed by boat or by wading throughout a lagoon); three are county or metropolis parks and thus not recognized exterior the area. All are that uncommon factor in South Florida:: A wild place that hasn’t been spoiled.
Quiet seashores in Florida you should attain by boat
Cayo Costa State Park, Pine Island
Probably the most distant and hardest to succeed in of those quiet seashores is Cayo Costa, and but all it takes is an hour boat trip. Cayo Costa State Park close to Pine Island shouldn't be solely essentially the most distant of those secluded seashores, it’s additionally essentially the most expansive.
There are greater than 9 miles of seaside and the sand is laden with shells and dotted with bleached drift wooden. There’s no disputing it: It’s unforgettably beautiful.
You'll be able to discover Cayo Costa on a day journey or keep in a single day. There’s boat service from a number of places. You'll be able to take a Tropic Star ferry from Bokelia, a small city on Pine Island, which is west of Cape Coral and Fort Myers. (Fares are $47 for daytrippers and $65 for campers.) There’s additionally the Island Star ferry run by King Fisher Fleet out of Punta Gorda. The King Fisher docks are a couple of minutes off I-75 and supply free parking. Tickets are $48 for adults.
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Cayo Costa is distant and wild: No snack bars, no diversions, simply seaside, nature and also you. You'll be able to camp on Cayo Costa or keep in a tiny rustic cabin with out electrical energy or working water. Evenings on the closely wooded island are magical, though in summer season that magic is prone to embrace a number of mosquitoes and no see ums. November to April nights are extremely wanted, so guide forward. Right here’s a have a look at the Cayo Costa expertise.
Skilled kayakers can paddle to Cayo Costa, nevertheless it’s a good distance over open water and is mostly beneficial just for these tenting on the island who don’t must make a round-trip in at some point. Listed below are some assets on kayaking to Cayo Costa from the Calusa Blueway web site.
St. Lucie Inlet Protect State Park, Stuart
St. Lucie Inlet can be on a barrier island, this one on the Atlantic coast, nevertheless it’s quite a bit simpler to succeed in. To seek out St. Lucie Inlet Protect State Park in Stuart, you do must paddle a kayak or arrive by boat, nevertheless it’s solely a 3rd of a mile throughout the Intracoastal. (Need extra paddling? There's a nice kayak path on and across the island.)
The secluded seaside, although, is the reward. From the Intracoastal, a shaded boardwalk crosses the island and opens to a large, wild and pristine seaside that goes on and on. The state park’s seaside is 2.7 miles lengthy, however the southern boundary is with Hobe Sound Nationwide Wildlife Refuge, and thus the seaside truly continues uninterrupted for greater than 5 miles whole. As a result of it’s laborious to succeed in, this can be a seaside the place you’re prone to discover a part you don’t must share with anybody.
Rangers will zip you throughout the island on a golf cart when you have seaside gear and close to the seaside is a big coated picnic pavilion and restrooms.
Quiet seashores in county parks recognized largely by locals
Clam Go Park, Naples
We solely found Collier County’s pleasant Clam Go Park in Naples as a result of we had been staying on the Naples Grande Seaside Resort, for which that is the lodge seaside. Although it’s little recognized, Clam Go Park is public with a car parking zone ($10) and a tram that crosses a boardwalk by way of a mangrove swamp.
Clam Go has effective sugary sand like all Naples seashores, however what makes it particularly enjoyable is Clam Go – the smallest, shallowest go on the Gulf Coast.
The go is a slim river-like opening within the mangroves, shallow sufficient an grownup can stand on the middle besides on the highest tide. When you float within the waters of the go, you're gently swept away by the tide. If the tide is coming in, you float right into a shallow mangrove-fringed lagoon. If the tide goes out, you float out into the Gulf, which stays shallow for an ideal distance. It’s a pure “lazy river” journey, the place the pull and depth of the water is secure however nonetheless enjoyable. (The currents in bigger passes may be extraordinarily harmful.)
When you swim or wade throughout Clam Go, the seaside north extends for miles, lined with seagrape timber and foliage. This stretch is simply the place for somebody in search of quiet seashores in Florida.
Barefoot Seaside Protect, Bonita Springs
Journey a bit additional north and also you’ll discover one other spectacular county park: Barefoot Seaside Protect in Bonita Seaside. To succeed in this seaside, you wind by way of a lush residential neighborhood of million-dollar houses. Whenever you attain Barefoot Seaside, you are feeling such as you’re in a personal enclave. Parking/entrance charge is $10.
Stephen Leatherman, aka Dr. Seaside, has named Barefoot Seaside to his high 10 checklist in previous years, however, fortuitously, it stays unspoiled.
Barefoot Seaside is 342 acres of pure land and you'll stroll a mile alongside the seaside to the tip, the place you attain the swift currents of Wiggins Go. (Throughout the go lies the very good Delnor-Wiggins State Park.)
Tigertail Seaside, Marco Island
Tigertail Seaside on Marco Island is one other Collier County Park, and it’s additionally an journey to succeed in. A dozen years in the past, this seaside was an off-shore sandbar. The winds of Hurricane Wilma in 2005 piled sand on the southern finish of the sandbar, and right this moment what is named Sand Greenback Island is linked to the mainland.
The park is standard with locals for its cut up character. On one aspect of the lagoon, you pay $eight to park and are available to a clear and well-kept park with altering rooms, a first-rate snack bar, picnic tables, an ideal playground and a concession stand that rents kayaks, get up paddleboards and different seaside gear.
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On the opposite aspect of the lagoon, you permit improvement behind. A wild sandspit extends three miles north, a seaside with delicate white sand, scads of shells, dolphins swimming off-shore, ospreys squealing overhead and so many shore birds that it’s a cease on the Nice Florida Birding Path.
However the journey is crossing the lagoon itself.
The lagoon is about 50 yards throughout and at excessive tide, the water comes as much as about your waist or chest on the buoy that marks the cross-over level. The underside of the lagoon is a squishy, grassy mud. You don’t sink, however you do have to beat the “yuck” issue.
Crossing the lagoon, individuals maintain their belongings over their heads and giggle as they really feel the ooze between their toes.
If that’s not your thought of enjoyable, you CAN stroll about 20 minutes across the lagoon to the south to succeed in the seaside. When you deliver babies, think about pulling them on a seaside float or renting a kayak or paddleboard. Parking/entrance charge is $10.
Quiet seashores in Florida which can be off the primary drag
Once I found Hobe Sound Nationwide Wildlife Refuge , I felt like I had received the lottery.
We had been bicycling the beachfront street on ritzy Jupiter Island, which dead-ends into Hobe Sound Nationwide Wildlife Refuge. Nothing on the signage signifies there’s a public seaside on the finish of this street, and after 30-plus years of exploring Florida’s southeast, I had by no means heard about this seaside.
So after we received there, we had been shocked to find we had stumbled onto the doorway to greater than 5 miles of untamed, broad unspoiled sandy shore.
The Hobe Sound seaside extends north greater than two miles the place the equally pristine St. Lucie Protect seaside begins.
Parking is $5, restrooms are portapotties and there are not any picnic tables or facilities. What you can see is miles of magnificence and solitude.
Greatest secluded seashores in South Florida
- St. Lucie Inlet Protect State Park, Stuart
- Hobe Sound Nationwide Wildlife Refuge, Hobe Sound
- Clam Go Park, Naples
- Barefoot Seaside Protect County Park, Bonita Seaside
- Cayo Costa State Park, Pine Island
- Tigertail Seaside, Marco Island
Extra Florida seaside adventures
- Florida’s all-time high seashores
- Greatest seashores within the Florida Keys
- Seashores of Venice
- Florida Rambler’s seaside channel
- Driving on the seaside in Florida
- Snorkeling from shore
- Surf fishing: Find out how to get began