Just 160 miles north of Miami, on a sliver of land detached from the mainland, is stunning and serene Sebastian Inlet State Park. A diversity of wildlife can be spotted, plenty of white sandy beach has accessibility to the water, and a wealth of other activities reside in one of the best state parks in Florida. History of the Treasure Coast is quite unique and dates back hundreds of years, so The McLarty Treasure Museum further adds to the list of things to do. Whether you’re an avid watersports kind of person or someone who just likes to collect shells while walking the beach, Sebastian Inlet State Park delivers.
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Forty miles of bicycle paths weave through major points of the scenic area, and there are multiple accessible beach nooks along the way, so pack a picnic lunch. Challenging off road opportunities start at the State Park Bayside Marina if you’re more into the extreme rather than a stroll. Part of the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail can be found in the park, because of species that habitat in the subtropical ecosystem. Hike hammock trail to explore an abundance of the native foliage, and dig deeper into navigating the terrain via geocaching, an intricate type of scavenger hunt.
The Atlantic Ocean, Indian River Lagoon, Intracoastal Waterway and the freshwater Sebastian River provide ample and diverse waters for all sorts of excursions. Scuba diving and snorkeling are superb thanks to great summer water clarity, and canoeing and kayaking are especially fun when paddling through the interesting mangroves. But the waters are most famous for fishing—jetties and bridge catwalks allow for prime access. Sebastian Fishing Museum gives enthusiasts a peek into the beginning of the fishing industry—old boats nets and historical artifacts are on display.
For a vehicle carrying multiple passengers, it’s $8 to enter the park, which is open all day, every day if the year – entrance fees are cheaper for those traveling solo or by bike or foot. You can camp at one of the 51 sites for $26 a night, and that includes electricity and water. Restrooms, a well-equipped playground by the lagoon and Wi-Fi in specific spots are among other alluring perks of camping under the vibrant stars of Sebastian, versus booking a hotel.
Sebastian Inlet State Park
Address: 9700 South Highway A.1.A, Melbourne Beach FL 32951