While walking is a key form of transportation around the beach and downtown, you can get from one to the other in a variety of ways. Travel like a local and get the most out of your stay with the handy tips below.
Real-Time Ride Sharing
As a progressive city, the Pensacola Bay Area has many ride-sharing programs including Uber, Lyft, and traditional taxi services that will take you wherever you want to go. Ride-sharing takes away the trouble of parking and lets you relax in the passenger seat.
Pensacola Beach Island Trolley
Travel island style and discover all the fun things to see and do on Pensacola Beach. During peak season, the Santa Rosa Island Authority operates a free trolley service to nearly three dozen stops along the beach from the east to the west end of the island. The service is ADA compliant and has bike racks. The trolley runs seven days a week from 4 p.m. to midnight, May 25 – September 3.
Escambia County Area Transit (ECAT)
From humble beginnings using mule-drawn cars in 1884 to a thriving county-side system, ECAT continues to meet the needs of residents and visitors alike. ECAT spans routes throughout the entire county making it simple for any traveler to get where they’re going. All transportation is ADA accessible and includes bike racks.
Pensacola Bay Cruises
Pensacola Bay Cruises features two double-decker boats that connect Downtown Pensacola to Pensacola Beach and the Gulf Islands National Seashore – Fort Pickens. The two ferries, named Turtle Runner and Pelican Perch by local school children, has the capacity to hold 150 passengers, with each leg of the trip taking approximately 35-45 minutes. This is a unique way to enjoy the waterways of Pensacola and get to where you’re going.
In a coastal city, it’s important to remember a few things when making your way around. During peak season, it’s important to leave early and allow adequate time to get to your destination. Be cautious of pedestrians and marine life that may be crossing roads such as sea turtles and birds.
Before parking downtown, click here for a complete parking guide. When parking on Pensacola Beach, there are several public access lots. Casino Beach is the main beach and will be the first parking lot in view. It has one entry and one exit so be alert and watch for signs. Click here for a full map of the island that includes public access parking lots and trolley stop information. Perdido Key has three Public Beach Access Points of which all are numbered. Perdido Key State Park is open 8 a.m. – sunset and is $3 per car per day. The Gulf Islands National Seashore is located both on Pensacola Beach and Perdido Key. It is $20 per carload and the pass is good for seven days. The National Seashore is home to diverse wildlife, hiking trails, forts, paddle launches and so much more. When parking along any of the beaches be cautious of sand. Many cars sink when directly in contact off of the pavement.