Adventure (noun) An exciting or very unusual experience; participation in exciting undertakings or enterprises. Experience the ultimate adventure in Pensacola. With rolling hills, bountiful bayous, lazy lagoons, natural national seashores and the emerald green waters of the Gulf of Mexico, there’s a gamut of outdoor activities that are yours for the taking.
For travelers looking to spend a few days in Pensacola or an extended Florida stay, look to Pensacola for a lineup of Florida state trails that offer an arrange of outdoor adventures and serve as a gateway to the Florida panhandle.
Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail
Have you ever dared to paddle 1,515 miles around the state of Florida? Add it to your bucket list. The Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail begins at Big Lagoon State Park in Pensacola, Fla. and spans the entire coast of the state.
The trail includes every Florida coastal habitat type, from barrier island dune systems to salt marsh to mangroves. Numerous historical sites and points of interest are accessible by kayak along with colorful fishing communities and urban centers. Divided into 26 different segments, the trail is utilized by thousands of Florida residents and visitors alike who paddle the trail for a few hours, days, weeks or months. Some hardy souls have paddled the entire trail, and others seek to complete the trail in segments over several years.
Florida Panhandle Shipwreck Trail
Dive in to the deep and explore Florida history and wildlife along the Florida Panhandle Shipwreck Trail. Beginning in Pensacola, this trail features 12 shipwrecks along Florida’s Gulf Coast, with five of the shipwrecks sunken in the Gulf of Mexico along the Pensacola shoreline.
Did you know that one of those shipwrecks, the USS Oriskany, is the largest artificial barrier reef in the world? A one-of-a-kind diving experience, the ship lays 22 miles south of Pensacola in more than 200 feet of water. Nicknamed “the Great Carrier Reef,” the site is one of the most popular diving destinations in the United States. With a myriad of pelagic and sedentary marine life, opportunities for underwater video and photography are superb.
Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail
In Pensacola, we’re lucky to be located under the superhighway for birds, the Atlantic Flyway that stretches 3,000 miles from the Caribbean to the Arctic tundra on which a kaleidoscope of amazing birds migrates to and from their wintering grounds.
Pensacola also happens to have the gateway to the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail. Beginning at our own Big Lagoon State Park near Perdido Key, the trail spans 2,000 miles across Florida and features over 500 locations where waterfowl and shorebirds find winter refuge.
Whatever your adventure speed may be, the Pensacola Bay Area offers an outdoor style for everyone. Grab your masks, binoculars, paddles or tennis shoes and head south to the great sunshine state.