St. Andrew’s State Park in Panama City, Florida is on the official list of Florida’s State Parks and is actually in Panama City, about three miles east of PCB. It boasts a 1.5 mile stretch of beach and an impressive 1,260 acres that provides an abundance of enjoyable activities for the your entire family or group. They have great areas for swimming, sunning and snorkeling, while parents will love the child-friendly area for the little kids to play. Two nature trails meander through the park for bikers, birdwatchers and hikers to make their way through the natural flora and wildlife. Anglers are also very welcome at St. Andrew’s Park, as they take advantage of two convenient fishing piers, a boat ramp, a great deep-sea jetty and surf fishing. Some folks like to take a leisurely walk on the piers or climb on the rocks.
Those who visit St. Andrews Park do so for a variety of reasons. On any given day, one might see a combination of picnic baskets and coolers, boogie boards, bicycles, surfboards, snorkeling gear and fishing gear. Kayaks, canoes and scuba gear may also be spotted. Many just come to enjoy the beauty and nature while seeking out deer, raccoon, marine life and a variety of birds. You’ll even find people there in the middle of winter, all bundled up enjoying the magnificent beauty.
The park also has a full-facility campground with well over a hundred camp sites for those wanting to stay overnight. The campgrounds are suitable for RV’s and primitive tent camping. The bathhouse is clean and well maintained while the washers and dryers seem to be in good order. With the park being right on the bay, campers are able to watch as the sun sets and the moon rises over the water while sailboats float by. Oh, and don’t forget the bug spray to keep the little pesky critters away. They will feel welcome to nibble away without it. Remember that the park gates close at sunset, so if you plan to arrive after that time on the day of your arrival, you’ll need to contact the park to make arrangements. Camping is located on the Grand Lagoon side of the park so they’re are not right on the beach. Bicycles are great for getting around the park and for getting to and from the campsite. The camping fees are currently $28 per night which includes electricity and water. Picnic tables and grills are also located at each campsite. Make your camping reservations as far ahead as possible since this is probably the best campground in the area and is usually in demand.
St. Andrews is home to the Shell Island shuttle that transports visitors from the park to the uninhabited island. It runs constantly during the day, making trips about every 30 minutes to and from the island. For more information including pricing, be sure to read our review of Shell Island.
Be sure not to overlook this treasure of a park when visiting PCB. It has a great deal to offer and makes a welcome distraction from the pace of a busy tourist town. You’ll be able to spend a leisurely day in the park sunning, swimming and enjoying the beauty of nature, or you might prefer to be a bit more active while snorkeling, kayaking and fishing. It’s up to you, do what it is you like best. That’s the beauty of this park; many choices for many people. You don’t have to do what everyone else does, just do your own thing.
St. Andrews State Park is open 365 days a year from 8 am until sundown. To get there from Highway 98, just take the Thomas Drive exit and follow the signs. Entrance prices are $4 for a single passenger vehicle, $8 per vehicle with 2-8 people and $2 for pedestrians, bicyclists, and extra passengers. The concession stand offers snacks and drinks along with fishing supplies and souvenirs. St. Andrews State Park in Panama City, FL offers a great value for a full day or a few hours of fun. This is a definite for every visit to PCB.
Panama City Beach, FL 32408
“St. Andrews State Park in Panama City boasts a 1.5 mile stretch of beach and an impressive 1,260 acres that provides an abundance of enjoyable activities for the your entire family or group.”
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