Gulf Island National Seashore - Mississippi and Florida
Americans own over 97,000 acres of prime waterfront real estate on the Gulf of Mexico east of the Mississippi River. Gulf Islands National Seashore has no casinos, no condominiums, and no shopping malls, and it will remain that way forever. There are historic coastal forts, wild islands, sandy beaches, salt marshes, and wildlife. Your visit counts as support for this amazing national park area on the beautiful Mississippi and Florida Gulf Coastline.
Gulf Islands Trivia
1. Gulf Islands is the country's largest national seashore and is one of the top ten most visited National Park areas.
2. Eighty percent of Gulf Islands National Seashore is under water.
3. The Naval Live Oaks Area, purchased by the federal government in 1828 as a tree farm for shipbuilding timber, is the oldest protected property in our National Park System.
4. The famous Chiricahua Apache leader, Geronimo, and his band were held at Fort Pickens, Florida, from 1886-1888.
5. Presidio Isla de Santa Rosa, the largest colonial presidio on the Gulf Coast of Spanish Florida, was established in 1722 and was destroyed by a hurricane in 1752.
6. Twenty endangered and threatened animals, including the tiny Perdido Key Beach Mouse, make use of habitat at Gulf Islands National Seashore.
7. Over 300 species of birds have been sighted.
8. During the Civil War, the 2nd Louisiana Native Guards, one of the first all-black regiments in the US Army, guarded Confederate prisoners sent to Ship Island. The 2nd regiment became the first black unit on the Gulf Frontier to meet the Confederates in battle. 9. The British occupied Ship Island during the War of 1812. From there they grayed their invasion of Louisiana in a failed attempt to capture New Orleans.
10. Your last seafood meal may have had its start in the park. The Seashore's salt marshes shelter and feed many kinds of shrimp, crab, and fish.
Gulf Islands Attractions
1. Enjoy snowy white beaches, sparkling blue waters, lush salt marshes, and dense maritime forests.
2. Tour historic Forts Massachusetts, Pickens, and Barrancas, parts of a 19th-century system of forts that guarded the American seacoast.
3. Take a passenger ferry to Ship Island, Mississippi, that operates March-October, weather permitting.
4. Hike on one of the many designated trails that cover more than 34 miles in the Seashore.
5. Enjoy a beautiful sunrise or sunset at the beach.
6. Visit the wilderness islands, Horn and Petit Bois, off the Mississippi coastline. Picnic with friends or families at the covered pavilions.
7. Camp at the Davis Bayou Campground in Mississippi or the Fort Pickens Campground in Florida.
8. Kayak or canoe in the quiet coastal marshes.
9. Boat on your own or hire a licensed boat operator to take you out to the Mississippi islands.
10. Try your luck at fishing.
About the Author
Rick Chapo is with http://nomadjournals.com