Everyone knows that Florida is famous for sunshine and beautiful nature, but why stop there when you could get off the beaten path and explore historic Wakulla County. Our area is as rich in nature as it is in history. Discover a more natural section of sunny Florida and set out for Wakulla County, your gateway to enriching historical sites, quaint lighthouses, and stunning natural scenery.
Immerse Yourself in History
New England often gets the spotlight for pre-Revolutionary war historical sites, but Florida is also teeming with landmarks that helped shape the origins of our country. Northern Florida has been home to the Apalachee Indians, Spanish Colonists, Caribbean Pirates, and early American colonists, and this mix plays intricately into the history of the area.
Begin your journey at the San Marcos de Apalache Historic State Park. This Spanish fort was constructed in 1679, and the Spanish colonists used logs that were painted to resemble stone in order to stave off attacks. It was later occupied by the U.S. Army and then used as a Confederate base in the Civil War.
The path through history then continues at the St. Marks River Saltworks, which also played an important strategic role during the Civil War. Originally, men who were the highest salt producers were exempt from serving in the Confederate Army, but the Saltworks soon became a crucial target for the Union to weaken southern resources, resulting in a large-scale attack from land and sea!
Experience the Charm of Coastal Lighthouses
There’s nothing that makes you feel a connection to the ocean and the land quite like looking up at the silhouette of a majestic lighthouse on the shore, while the waves lap hypnotically nearby. A little-known fact about Wakulla County is that it is home to the second-oldest lighthouse in Florida and on the Gulf of Mexico. The St. Mark’s Lighthouse illuminates the path to the St. Marks River amidst the treacherous tree-lined coast and shoals. The light at the top has been shining perpetually since the end of the Civil War.
Walk on the Wild Side with Breathtaking Natural Wonders
Whether you’re an angler, avid bird-watcher, or nature photographer, you’ll find that scenic beauty and natural wildlife abound in the St. Mark’s River Watershed. Kayakers have 5.5 miles of trails available that take you from the river into the Gulf of Mexico, and camping is even permitted at certain points along the trail for the truly adventurous. You’ll have access to incredible views of the lighthouse and opportunities to view Florida’s abundant waterfowl population. And best of all, there are numerous accommodations and restaurants nearby so you’ll be close to the excitement. Learn more about the fun and educational opportunities available to you, and start planning your visit to Wakulla today!