"St. Joseph State Park" Florida Off The Beaten Path Tip by KimberlyAnn

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St. Joseph Peninsula State Park has pristine white sand beaches, emerald waters, and sandy pine scrub backcountry, providing you with many places to explore. This beautiful beach is bordered by some of the oldest and highest sand dunes in Florida. These dunes, are protected, so to access the beach, you will use boardwalks that have been built to carry you over the dunes. Do not walk on these dunes, as studies have shown that dunes like this help to protect the park. St. Joseph?s is an excellent park for bird watching, as well as fishing, hiking, swimming, flying kites, boating, camping, or just enjoying the beach. St. Joseph Peninsula Park has three nature trails. The Maritime Hammock Trail will lead you through a coastal hammock to the shores of the St. Joseph Bay. The Bayview Nature Trail passes through a maritime oak and salt marsh environment, running along side the bay. A seven mile long Wilderness trail begins at the end of the paved road and will take you to the tip of the peninsula. (See Photo 3) We really enjoyed the Bayview Trail where we saw thousands of fiddler crabs scurrying back and fourth along the route. I believe some were mating as we would see a male extend his huge claw high into the air, and wave it back and fourth. Then a female came quite close to him. They stood eyeing each other face to face. We also saw a crab that decided he wanted the hole of another. A short sparring match where the two crabs knocked their large claws together, ended when the original holder of the hole scurried out, abandoning it to the victor who immediately took up occupancy.

If you wish to bring a boat to the park there is a boat ramp and a small marina, which can hold a few small boats at a time. Overnight visitors have free use of the boat ramp, and if there is space, can leave their boats moored at the marina. If you are not staying over in the park then there is a small fee for using the ramp.

St. Joseph Peninsula has two campgrounds with a total of 119 campsites, all with water and electricity. It also offers eight cabins that can sleep up to seven people in each. Each cabin has a screened in porch with a picnic table and rocking chairs that faces St. Joseph Bay.

Directions: The park is located between Port St. Joe, and Apalachicola on Cape San Blas Road, off C-30.

Phone: (850) 227-1327
Website: http://www.floridastateparks.org/stjoseph

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Mar 14, 2008
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KimberlyAnn

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