Gulf Islands National Seashore Adds Visitor Amenities

Visitors to Gulf Islands National Seashore’s Perdido Key area have three new parking lots to choose from/NPS

More parking, better beach access, and a new multi-use trail opened at Gulf Islands National Seashore on Friday.

Specifically, visitors have three new parking lots, seven beach crossovers, and a half-mile multiple-use trail in the Perdido Key area.

The $2.6 million project to improve visitor access and experience, restore habitat, and protect critical resources began in September. Changes to the area include seven new accessible boardwalks (six along the road and one at the pavilion), the installation of three new paved parking areas to eliminate roadside parking, and the installation of new speed tables with pedestrian crosswalks.

The half-mile bike/pedestrian trail is part of the previous Johnson Beach Road. It begins at the eastern point of the new parking area and continues east to the roundabout at the end. The beginning is easily identifiable by yellow barricades to prevent vehicle use and to provide a safe recreation trail walk or bike. 

Dogs on a six-foot leash will be allowed on the roadway and multi-use path. They are not allowed on beaches or in the water.

The Perdido Key area of Gulf Islands National Seashore is a vital resource open year-round as the only public beach available in the immediate area. In 2023 it received more than 805,000 visitors. This area also provides critical habitat for the Perdido Key beach mouse, the most critically endangered small mammal in North America, as well as imperiled nesting shorebirds.

The project is funded by Gulf Restoration funding associated with the Deepwater Horizon oil spill settlement in partnership with the Florida Trustee Implementation Group (TIG).
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