St. George Island Lighthouse

 

sea beach footprints steps

Florida’s Forgotten Coast is back in business, and we offer some of most breathtaking and uncrowded beaches in the Sunshine State! If you’re on the hunt for a laidback beach destination with plenty of elbow room and tons of outdoor activities, St. George Island (SGI) is the place to be.

Ranked time and again as one of the best beaches in the country, this beautiful 22-mile barrier island is home to the most pristine coastline in the Florida panhandle. You won’t find high rises or noisy crowds of tourists here. Just sugar white sand, fresh air and the sparkling waters of the Gulf of Mexico. And here’s some news that will really get tails wagging: Most of St. George Island’s beaches are pet-friendly, which means your furry friends can tag along for the trip!

To top it off, St. George Island offers a wide range of outdoor adventures the whole family can enjoy. Here are a few of our favorites:

Calling all cyclists! Home to miles of paved bike paths, St. George Island is a dream-come-true for bike enthusiasts. In addition to the paved paths, there are heaps of back roads and sandy trails where you can coast along the Gulf and bay side of the island. Whether you bring your own bike or rent one from a local shop, you’re certain to get a great workout and plenty of fresh air.

Even better, St. George Island offers an extremely safe biking environment for riders of all ages. The St. George Island Bike Path is a public paved recreational path that runs six miles paralleling Gulf Beach Drive, the island’s main road. This path is a great way to get around the island and visit shops, restaurants and other local businesses. Explore the island via the path and ride all the way to St. George Island State Park. There, you can park your bike and pick up the hiking trails. Which brings us to our next outdoor activity…

Hiking

Hiking at Bald Point State ParkReady to hit the trails? You’re in luck! There are loads of hiking opportunities across Florida’s Forgotten Coast. Here on the island, St. George Island State Park spans nine miles of undeveloped beaches and high dunes, surrounded by the Gulf of Mexico and Apalachicola Bay. Inside the state park, hikers can hit the two-mile marked trail along the bayside. There is also a series of trails and boardwalks throughout the park, which offer exceptional wildlife sighting opportunities. Be sure to bring your binos and a camera! During your trek, you may spot raccoons, ghost crabs, loggerhead turtles, eagles and a variety of other birds.

Paddling

St. George Island PaddlingWhether you prefer SUP, canoeing or kayaking, St. George Island is every type of paddler’s paradise. No matter what floats your boat, you’re certain to have an memorable paddling adventure here.

Grab your paddles and hit the Gulf or Apalachicola Bay for peace and quiet, spectacular sights and a great workout. During your journey, keep your eyes peeled for all kinds of cool critters—from dolphins and manatees to rare sea birds and turtles. If you don’t have your own paddleboard or kayak, no worries! There are a number of shops on the island offering kayaks, canoes and paddle board rentals.

Fishing

Fishing on the Forgotten CoastWhether you’re a first-time fisher or an experienced angler, you’ll get hooked on St. George Island in no time. There are so many productive inshore and offshore fishing spots here. Plus, the island is home to several bait and tackle shops as well as two public boat ramps.

Whether you cast a rod from the beach, a pier, a kayak or motor boat, you’re certain to be rewarded with an incredible catch. Want a whole boatload of fish? Book a charter fishing excursion with one of our experienced local guides for a truly unforgettable adventure.

St. George Island is bursting with awesome outdoor activities for the whole family!

 

The Gift that Keeps on Giving: Discover Unforgettable Holiday Shopping on the Forgotten Coast

Shopping SGI

With Turkey Day just around the corner, you may be itching to get a head-start on your holiday shopping. Look no further than ! Franklin County is home to an array of charming boutiques, antique stores and art galleries brimming with rare treasures, handmade goodies and one-of-a-kind gifts.

Don’t plan to dive into holiday shopping until after Thanksgiving? We’ve got you covered. On Saturday, November 30, Franklin County shops will be participating in the Small Business Saturday campaign. This is the perfect time to come on down to the Forgotten Coast for a seasonal shopping spree.

All across our communities, from Carrabelle and Eastpoint to St. George Island and Apalachicola, you’ll discover great deals on everything from art and jewelry to food and apparel to home décor and fishing gear. Find the perfect gift for everyone on your list without fighting crowds at the mall—all while supporting small, locally owned businesses.

 

 

Palm Tree Lighting On St. George Island

Palm Tree Lighting SGI

December 5 @ 8:00 am5:00 pm

Celebrate the season at St. George Island’s Lighthouse Park on Thursday, December 5 and enjoy the festive display of holiday lights on the Cape St. George Lighthouse, Visitor Center, and along Franklin Boulevard. There will be a games for kids, face painting, carolers, hotdogs & cookies, visits with Santa plus lighting of the palms around dusk.

 

Turtle Talk July 16 @ 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Sea Turtles on the beach

Come learn all about our nesting sea turtles and find out how you can help them! Members of the St. George Island Turtle Patrol team will be on hand to answer questions and give an update about sea turtle nests on the island. Get the chance to touch a sea turtle carapace, or look close-up at loggerhead sea turtle eggs. This air-conditioned event is a wonderful chance to learn more about sea turtles and is great for anyone visiting the area alone or with family.

 

Discover Apalachicola, Florida

Apalachicola

Apalachicola Florida is a warm, welcoming port town bursting with hometown charm, friendly folks and rich maritime history. Nestled on the mouth of the Apalachicola River near St. George Island, this small coastal city is home to bustling seafood houses, weather-worn shrimp boats and stately historical buildings.

The name “Apalachicola” is a combination of the Hitchoti Indian words “apalahchi,” meaning “on the other side,” and “okli,” meaning “people.” However, Apalachicola locals will tell you it means “land of the friendly people.” As soon as you set foot in this genial small town, you’ll understand why. Brimming with warm hospitality and smiling faces, Apalachicola makes everyone feel at home.

Oyster tonging.

The Seahorse TooTin Shed

Hip & Historical
Apalachicola has managed to retain its historic charm while evolving into a hip destination teeming with arts and culture. Affectionately called “Apalach” by locals, this picturesque town gives visitors a delightful taste of Old Florida while offering countless activities and events.

The town lays claim to a beautifully restored historic district like none other in the Panhandle. Throughout Apalachicola’s historic downtown commercial district, visitors will stumble across eclectic boutiques, unique eateries, art galleries and popular music venues tucked into brick, tin-roofed warehouses. It’s a distinctive destination that offers the best of both worlds: old world charm and new world cool.

 

 

Beaches on the Forgotten Coast

Florida Beach
The 28 miles of St. George Island Florida’s beaches are serene and pet-friendly. The island consistently rates as one of the top beaches in the U.S., with miles of uncrowded expanses for sunning and shelling, clear Gulf waters for swimming and fishing, and pristine marshes for wildlife viewing. Visitors can rent a quaint beach cottage, a multi-story luxury beach home, or lodge at one of the two island hotels or inns. Except for the Julian G. Bruce State Park beach, St. George Island beaches are pet-friendly for well-behaved and leashed pets. Start planning your island getaway today at www.islevaca.com

St. Georgge Island Beaches

The public beach on St. George Island is easy to find. From Island Drive, the only access to the island, Go over the five-mile long Bryant Patton Bridge with a gorgeous view of Apalachicola Bay. When you get to the island stop sign, turn right and then left into convenient island parking. The public beach is not only easy to find but there are bath house facilities, covered pavilions for picnics, a playground and ball court for the younger generations. The Cape St. George Lighthouse and lighthouse Keeper’s House are also located in nearby Lighthouse Park.

 

St. George Island’s Beaches Are Calling: Plan Your Getaway Today!

St. Georgge Island Beaches

As you stroll down the beach pathway, you hear the soothing sound of gently rolling Gulf waves and the cry of gulls overhead. Breathing in the salty air, you catch sight of the emerald water glistening beyond the dunes. You feel the warmth of the sun’s brilliant rays wash over your shoulders as your feet sink into the powdery, sugar white sand.

It’s not just a daydream. St. George Island is calling!

Recovered & Ready for Visitors

Back in October, Hurricane Michael battered St. George Island’s beautiful beaches. But thanks to the hard work of volunteers along with county and state workers, the barrier island’s wide, gently sloping beaches are once again clean, pristine and as stunning as ever. Now we’re just waiting for you to visit!

If you’ve never had the pleasure of visiting, St. George Island is a 22-mile barrier island in the Gulf of Mexico on Florida’s Forgotten Coast. Home to the most unspoiled, serene beaches in the Sunshine State, the island is a tranquil getaway for snow birds, families, couples and anyone else looking for an escape.

There are no high rises in sight on this picturesque island. Just a laid-back attitude, breathtaking beaches and bountiful wildlife. The island’s uncrowded beaches are perfect for tons of activities, from swimming, fishing and paddling to shelling, castle-building and relaxing on the sugar white sand.

 

Butts & Clucks Cook-Off on the Apalachicola Bay

Butts & Cluck

The Butts & Clucks Cook-Off is a State Sanctioned Florida BBQ Association event and is a Regional Championship. The event will be held January 25th & 26th in Battery Park in Apalachicola. Also on January 24th there will be a Certified Judging Class held at the Community Center. Space is limited for judging class so sign up early.

Also, since most of the big BBQ teams from all over north and central Florida will be coming to cook in the contest, we have decided to have a local competition to go along with it so this year also we will be holding a Deviled Egg contest. (the Cluck that came from the Butt Contest) This contest will be judged at 4:00pm at the Community Center.

New this year will be a open competition for BBQ Sauce.

Check www.buttsandclucks.com website for rules and applications.

With a total of $15,000 in prize money and the winner moving on to the Jack Daniels Cook-off in Tennessee. Last year we had 25 professional BBQ teams and 40 judges that attended. We already have 18 teams signed up for this years event.

 

Pet Friendly Activities

Pet Friendly Isalnd

Looking for great pet-friendly destinations for your next getaway? Your furry friends don’t have to be left out when you vacation in Franklin County, Florida. Pet-friendly vacations are easy here with plenty of lodging options that will allow you to bring “Bif” or “Boots” along. There are also pet-friendly attractions and activities that make bringing your pet that much more fun. Check our directory to find pet-friendly destinations, and get your furry friend’s luggage ready!

SGI Pet Friendly

 

Beaches
Franklin County offers some of the best beaches to bring your dog. Book a beachside cottage, and spend your days basking, while your dog runs and splashes in the surf. St. George Island features many pet friendly accommodations and dogs who love waves will love the safe and gentle surf of the Gulf of Mexico.

Outdoor Exploration in Forests
Tate’s Hell State Forest and Apalachicola National Forest offers a variety of pet-friendly recreation activities for the outdoor enthusiast. Fishing requires a valid license and is regulated under the direction of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC). Picnicking at one of the many day-use areas is a popular activity in the forests. In most cases, leashed pets are welcome in designated areas.

Apalachicola Dog Park
The Apalachicola Dog Park is a free, 2 acre fenced site where dogs can play off-leash. Located on the corner of Avenue L and Twelfth Street in Apalachicola, the park includes large dog and small dog sections, plus a additional area for use by dogs or people with special needs. Water and seating in each section, shade structures, and safety gates. Open to the public dawn til dusk.

Restaurants
There are a variety of restaurants throughout the county that welcome well behaved pets.

 

Pet Friendly Activitieson St. George Island

Pet Friendly Isalnd

SGI Pet Friendly

Looking for great pet-friendly destinations for your next getaway? Your furry friends don’t have to be left out when you vacation ion St. George Isalnd, Florida. Pet-friendly vacations are easy here with plenty of lodging options that will allow you to bring “Bif” or “Boots” along. There are also pet-friendly attractions and activities that make bringing your pet that much more fun.