The crown jewel of the Florida Panhandle offers miles of beautiful beaches
Topsail Hill State Preserve must be seen to be appreciated. It is one of the most diverse natural eco-systems in the state, featuring wet prairies, scrub, pine flatwoods, marshes and cypress domes.
The park has more than three miles of pristine beaches and five dune lakes which encompass more than 170 acres on more than 1,637 acres of park.
Now known as the “Crown jewel of the Panhandle,” the park has RV accommodations, with 156 sites and 16 rental cabins, and continues to be one of the most popular in the state. Booking is often solid for 11 months ahead.
New renovations to the park will include a new ranger station, 16 additional rental cabins, 22 more campsites, a new tram path, and a bike path around the coastal dune lakes.
A tram shuttle to the beach is offered to visitors from the day-use parking area. Visitors can also hike or bike on the shared use trail.
The park has a small amphitheater that hosts many of the programs that feature interpretive talks about fauna and flora. The amphitheater was built with the help of a citizen’s support group “The Friends of Topsail.”
Imprints from the past
Evidence from midden mounds (discarded debris from Native American communities) and a large mound adjacent to the park, indicate that Native Americans used the area for fishing, hunting and camping.
From the late 1800s to the mid-1900s, workers from the Quarters Turpentine Village turpentined old-growth longleaf pines in forests now part of Topsail Hill. Scars can still be seen on many living trees in the park.
During World War II, the western portion of the preserve was used as a munitions testing range for developing the first missiles in the United States. Iron and rebar tracks were laid down to allow trucks to travel across the soft sand. Visitors can still see these tracks, especially along the hiking trail south of Morris Lake.
Hours of Operation: 8:00 a.m. to sunset. Kayaks, canoes and stand up paddle boards are available for rent.
Click here for an interactive map by Topsail visitor Jodie Burns.
Located in Santa Rosa Beach, the park is located 1/4 south of U.S. Hwy 98 on western end of Scenic Hwy. 30A. ::MAP:
Admission Fees – $6.00 per vehicle (up to 8 people) – Scenic Hwy. 30A just north of U.S. Hwy. 98
Pedestrians, Bicyclists, Passengers in vehicles with holder of Annual Individual Entrance Permit – Admission Fee $2.00
Bungalow – All Year, minimum one week rental
Bungalows are located within Gregory E. Moore RV campgrounds near the tram stop and are available for weekly or monthly rental. Each bungalow is fully furnished and equipped with all appliances, cable TV, and linens. One-bedroom bungalows have additional sleeping of a fold out couch. Each bungalow has a carport, full kitchen, bathroom, living room and utility room.
For camping or cabin reservations click here. For Information about Topsail Hill Preserve State Park, please call 850-267-8330. For more info, go to their website at: https://www.floridastateparks.org/park/Topsail-Hill