Palm Trees lead the way down a winding tropical sunlit road. Turning and spiraling through this natural tropical paradise you reach a hidden Jewel, Fort Island Beach in Crystal River, Florida.
Fort Island Beach in Crystal River, Florida is a small beach, walking trail and fishing pier. You can get there by taking by turning on 16000 W. Fort Island Trail and driving approx. 10 miles. The drive to the beach is filled with scenic landscape and inlets. The road winds and turns as you pass boat ramps, fishing spots and couple small restaurants.
Approximately half way to the beach you will pass by the Marine Science Station which has been educating students within the Citrus County, Florida region since 1967.
As you reach the beach you will see a small, yet beautiful view of the Gulf of Mexico. There are no large waves as the west coast (especially in the gulf regions) tends to have light whitecaps. The beach is a light (almost white) fine sand. To the left you can walk down a trials that will lead you to a hidden little beach and excellent fishing area. It is common to see people enjoying the sun while wading in the lukewarm water as they fish.
The beach is fairly active on weekends as many families come out to enjoy the beautiful weather and have some fun. There are some covered picnic areas, bathrooms and showers. The beach has a slightly curved shape and on a typical day you can see for miles. The Gulf of Mexico is peppered with small islands.
As you make your way across the beach you will see a walking trail which is fairly new to Fort Island Beach. This nature trial guides you through a scenic tropical landscape. Along the path you will encounter a wide range of wildlife including seagulls, egrets, squirrels and occasionally alligators and snakes! Don’t worry that it is actually rare to see an alligator in this area, but they are common along the coast of Florida.
You can take the path to a fishing pier and try your luck! Many people spend their afternoons catching fish and enjoying the seascape. If you have had a bad day I suggest that you make your way down the pier just before sunset. As you face out to the west you can witness the sun as it escapes beyond the horizon. The light bouncing off the and through the clouds is a sight that will calm your soul.
If you enjoy nature this is certainly a place to check out. Fort Island Beach in Crystal River, Florida is a hidden gem that is mostly known to locals only. Enjoy the day, swim, build a sand castle and catch some fish! If you want to see more of Crystal River, Florida be sure to check out our Citrus County section.