Shell Island, Florida, runs approximately seven-and-a-half miles adjacent to St. Andrew's State Recreational Area. Totally uninhabited by humans and only accessible by boat, Shell Island is a hidden gem for surfers, scuba divers and snorkelers. Because this barrier island is relatively secluded, its guests will be welcomed by pristine sand dunes, flocks of colorful seashells and rare ecological delights preserved from eons past. Visitors are transported from St. Andrews State Recreation Area to Shell Island via ferry.
This unspoiled area is a peaceful place to camp, fish, bicycle, bird watch, hike, boat and more. Highlights include:
- Swim with the dolphins: Various tours and cruises will take you to see playful dolphins and feed wild birds.
- Surfing: Some of the best surfing is in the nearby Panama City area. Try the Panama City Chamber of Commerce for up-to-date surfing activities and tide times.
- Snorkeling and diving: The Shell Island Shuttle departs every 30 minutes from the St. Andrew's State boat ramp and offers snorkel excursion packages for both adults and children.
The Panama City area is a reputed "wreck paradise" with more than 50 artificial reef sites and a bounty of marine life.
- Empire Mica: This historical and infamous 465-foot freighter was torpedoed in World War II and is now a diver's delight.
- Ironman Florida (November): Held in nearby Panama City, competitors swim, bike and run an exhausting 140 miles.
- Spring Break: Be warned, college kids invade from mid-February through to April.
Since Shell Island is uninhabited, you'll have to go to Panama City Beach for your nightlife. With beach bars, clubs and pubs for your partying pleasure, there'll be plenty of places to grab a bite, quench your thirst and dance.
You can camp along Shell Island's Grand Lagoon, which has a boat ramp, fishing pier, picnic and grilling area and restrooms.
Need to Know
- A barrier island near Panama City Beach and a few hundred yards from St. Andrews State Park.
- Average temperature is 78 F annually.
- Temperatures can dip to the low 60s in the winter and can soar to the high 80s in the summer.
- Facilities (for those camping at Shell Island's Grand Lagoon):
- Boat ramp
- Small fishing pier
- Picnic and grill area
A pristine haven, Shell Island lives up to its name. If you're ready to see what's lies beneath the waves, these Shell Island ideas will have you grabbing your gear in no time.
|Write A Comment|