NOTE: This is the second of three follow-up posts to an earlier post titled, “How is planning a meeting similar to planning a vacation?” and came about as a result (the post) of a recent road trip to Florida I took with my husband.
$6 entrance fee per vehicle for two people; or $4 for one person.
We found the trails here not as well marked as some of the other parks we visited, nor were there any park brochures or maps available. The only suggestion offered by staff for a map was to take a snapshot of the large sign of the overall park layout situated just beyond the entrance point. That being said we enjoyed our time at the park very much.
The 1,640 acre park is located approximately 29 miles west of PCB and consists of 15 miles of easily traversed hiking trails, three miles of pristine white sand beach and dunes, three freshwater coastal dune lakes, old growth pine forest and wetlands.
Beach Tram Trail and Campbell Lake Bike Trail were both paved.
No Name Lake Trail takes you to a small coastal dune lake.
Turpentine Trail takes you to remnants of the turpentine industry, where long leaf pines were mined for turpentine from the late 1800s and mid-1900s.
Gopher Tortoise Trail takes you through a forested area of long leaf pines and saw palmettos – where you might see a gopher tortoise or two (we didn’t, but …).
Morris Lake Trail takes you through ancient dune and scrub areas.
The park offers 22 standard camping and 156 RV sites. Clamping services (upscale camping) are available through Fancy Camps, a luxury camping company based in Santa Rosa Beach that come set up in advance of your arrival with regular mattresses, linens, a seating area and A/C.
Also available through park services are seasonal-rate rentals for the park’s 16 Bungalows (sleeping 4 max) and 16 cabins (sleeping 6 max).
No personal motor craft, kayaks or canoes are allowed in the park for environmental safety reasons – however, kayak, canoe and SUP rentals are available through park services. Fish commonly caught include Redfish, Spanish Mackerel and Pompano.
Complimentary trams run throughout the trails during park hours which are a nice addition if you happen to overextend or heaven forbid get confused and can’t figure out how to get back to the parking lot. (We were tempted a time or two, but ….).
The beach is approximately ¾ of a mile in from the parking lot and you see people walking or biking to the beach carrying beach chairs, coolers, etc. on their backs much as you would backpacks (which we thought was pretty clever).
The Kith and Kin Café offers gourmet coffee, sandwiches, pastries, tea and smoothies.
For more information, visit: https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks-and-trails/topsail-hill-preserve-state-park