Sebastian Inlet State Park

9700 South Highway A.1.A.
Melbourne Beach, FL 32951

321-984-4852

Surfers from around the globe flock to Sebastian Inlet State Park to ride “First Peak” and “Monster Hole,” but this pristine park is more than just a Florida surfer’s paradise.

Visitors stroll untouched beaches, collecting shells and observing sea turtle nests, or try their luck fishing from one of the jetties that slice into the Atlantic. Calmer waters on the Indian River Lagoon beckon kayakers to explore wild beauty.

Two museums provide area history. The McLarty Treasure Museum features the 1715 Spanish treasure fleet while the Sebastian Fishing Museum chronicles history of the area's fishing industry.

A campground for RVs and tent campers is available, along with a boat ramp.

Experiences

Bicycling
A multi-use, paved path runs through the park parallel to state road A1A and, in sections, parallel to the Indian River Lagoon. Bicyclists will enjoy this forty-mile-long path with numerous beach access points.

Three mountain bicycle trails are located within the park. Florida is known for its flatland, and the term "mountain bike trail" is used where sandy and swampy flatland challenge the off-road cyclist. The three trails are a combination of off-road and paved courses. All three trails begin and end at the State Park Bayside Marina. Check with the Inlet Marina staff before venturing out on any trail.
Helmets are highly recommended for all cyclists and Florida law requires helmets for cyclists age 16 and under.

Birding
Sebastian Inlet State Park is part of the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail and is home to many types of shorebirds and migratory species. Please ask for the Sebastian Inlet Bird Checklist at our Ranger Stations, or download a copy from this site. The Pelican Island Audubon Society has completed a video on a birding field trip to Sebastian Inlet State Park.

Boating
Boat ramps are located on both sides of Sebastian Inlet State Park. Boaters have access to the brackish waters of the Indian River Lagoon, the Intracoastal Waterway, the freshwater of the Sebastian River, and to the salty water of the Atlantic Ocean. The Gulf Stream is located about 25 to 30 miles east of Sebastian Inlet.

Camping Full Facility
The central location of Sebastian Inlet's tent and recreational vehicle (RV) campground makes it a popular camping spot. It is a mere stone's throw from the inlet and a short stroll from the beach. All 51 campsites have water and electrical hook-ups, a fire ring with grill and a picnic table. Accessible sites are available. Also available are accessible restroom facilities, a dump station, and a Wi-Fi hotspot near the marina. Beach wheelchairs are available at no charge. Well behaved pets are allowed in the campground, but are prohibited on the beach in accordance with our Pet Policy.

Maximum RV length is 40 feet.
Reservations may be made up to 11 months in advance through ReserveAmerica. Book online or call (800) 326-3521 (8 a.m. to 8 p.m.) or Telecommunications Device for the Deaf (888) 433-0287.

Camping Primitive
Sebastian Inlet now has primitive camping located at the Bayside Marina. Although most of the sites are walk in/carry in sites, there are a couple that can accommodate a vehicle drive up & drop off.  Pets are permitted in accordance with our Pet Policy.

Paddling
Canoes and kayaks can be paddled to islands and along the mangrove-fringed shoreline of the Indian River Lagoon. Rentals are available from Bayside Marina; call (321) 724-5424 for inquiries.

Fishing
Sebastian Inlet and the surrounding waters provide fantastic Florida fishing for beach, river, and inlet anglers. Impressive catches are often made from the two jetties extending into the Atlantic Ocean. Both jetties and bridge catwalks are ADA accessible. Boat launch facilities provide access to nearby offshore fishing and diving. Information on fishing regulations is available at both entrance stations. Spear fishing is prohibited. Saltwater fishing licenses may be obtained at all county tax collectors’ offices, online, or by telephone by dialing toll free, 1-888-FISH-FLORIDA (347-4356).

Geo-Seeking
Geocaching is an outdoor game using hand-held global positioning systems (GPS) devices. It's effectively an inexpensive, interactive, high-tech treasure hunt that's a great way to learn geography. Participants use location coordinates to find caches. Some caches are easy to find; others are more difficult. The biggest reward is the thrill of the search and the discovery of a place where you have never been. Geocaching should have minimal impact to the environment and conscientious land use ethics should be followed.

Operation Recreation GeoTour

Hiking
For a relaxing stroll, take a walk down the Hammock Trail. This mile-long nature trail meanders under the shade of a coastal, sub-tropical, palm/oak hammock and along the fringe of the mangroves. Plant identification signs tell about many of the unique species in this habitat.

Mountain Biking
Three mountain bicycle trails are located within the park. Florida is known for its flatland, and the term "mountain bike trail" is used where sandy and swampy flatland challenge the off-road cyclist. The three trails are a combination of off-road and paved courses. All three trails begin and end at the State Park Bayside Marina. Check with Bayside Marina staff before venturing out on any trail.

A multi-use, paved path runs through the park parallel to state road A1A and, in sections, parallel to the Indian River Lagoon. Bicyclists will enjoy this 40 mile long path with numerous beach access points.

Picnicking
Picnic areas are located on both sides of Sebastian Inlet. The north side picnic area is adjacent to the beach, catching the ocean breeze, under the shade of a hundred palm trees. The picnic areas on the south side of the park overlook the waters of Sebastian Inlet. Consumption of alcohol beverages is prohibited.

Four waterfront picnic pavilions are clustered together on the south side of Sebastian Inlet. Each picnic pavilion can accommodate up to sixty people. The picnic pavilion rental time is from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. For reservations, please call (772) 589-9659. Nearby restroom and pavilion have ADA accommodations.

Playground
Children will have fun on a modern playground facility overlooking the Indian River Lagoon. Featuring swings, slides and a big green dinosaur, the playground is located by covered picnic pavilions #1 and #2. For your child's safety please insure that adult supervision is provided at all times.

Scuba Diving
Scuba diving and snorkeling are permitted in all of the waters of Sebastian Inlet State Park, with the exception of under the Sebastian Inlet Bridge and in the boat channel. Rock reefs stretch for miles starting south of Sebastian Inlet in the nearshore waters. Water visibility is best in the summer months. All divers and snorkelers must be within 100 feet of a dive flag. Spearfishing is prohibited.

Snorkeling
Scuba diving and snorkeling are permitted in all of the waters of Sebastian Inlet State Park, with the exception of under the Sebastian Inlet Bridge and in the boat channel. Rock reefs stretch for miles starting south of Sebastian Inlet in the nearshore waters. Water visibility is best in the summer months. All divers and snorkelers must be within 100 feet of a dive flag. Spearfishing is prohibited.

Star Gazing
Sebastian Inlet State Park semi-isolated location has some good star gazing locations such as the Atlantic Ocean beaches. Star Gazing is best on clear, crisp, cool nights throughout the winter months.

Surfing
Over three miles of Atlantic beach offer some of the best surfing on the East Coast. One of the most consistent surf breaks in Florida is Sebastian Inlet's first peak, located next to the north jetty. Another hot surf spot is Monster Hole (not a hole, but a shoal!)-located about a third of a mile off the beach, on the south side of Sebastian Inlet. The contour of the ocean floor rises up and when the surf is big, the waves form long lines, giving a long ride.

Swimming
Swimming opportunities abound along the three miles of Sebastian Inlet State Park's Atlantic Ocean beaches. For those who prefer to play in the water but do not like waves, "The Cove" on the north side of Sebastian Inlet is ideal. The Cove is a protected area with a hard bottom and a gentle slope, making it a favorite locale for parents with kids wanting to splash and swim. The Cove is a great alternate destination for visitors who are not strong swimmers or when the Atlantic surf is too rough for safe swimming.

Always make sure children are closely supervised. Everyone needs to swim with a buddy. Water depth in both the surf and the Cove ranges from a few inches to 15 feet.
Beach wheelchairs, and a specially designed floatable wheelchair, are available upon request.
The Florida Park Service holds the safety of its visitors in high regard. Staff look for the best ways to provide a safe environment at each park. Lifeguards are not present at all parks that offer swimming. At these parks, clearly marked signs state that visitors can swim at their own risk. Beach parks, like Sebastian Inlet State Park, use Florida’s beach warning flag program. The clearly marked flags and signs warn of danger.  There are no lifeguards on duty at Sebastian Inlet State Park.  Visitors swim at their own risk and should heed warnings.

Walking
For a relaxing stroll, take a walk down the Hammock Trail. This mile long nature trail meanders under the shade of a coastal, sub-tropical, palm/oak hammock and along the fringe of the mangroves. Plant identification signs tell about many of the unique species in this habitat.

Wildlife Viewing
Sebastian Inlet State Park is a wonderful place to view wildlife. Located on the tip of two barrier islands and surrounded by water, birds flock to Sebastian Inlet State Park. Visitors have a chance to view over 180 species of birds during the course of a year. The Sebastian Inlet State Park is part of the Great Florida Birding Trail. Sebastian Inlet State Park and the surrounding beaches have the largest nesting assemblage of sea turtles in the United States. During June and July visitors have an opportunity to witness nesting loggerhead sea turtles on a ranger-led walk.

Reservations for these tours are necessary and can be made at Friends of Sebastian Inlet State Park. Juvenile green sea turtles feed in the seagrass beds of the Indian River Lagoon and can be seen on the reefs off of the McLarty Treasure Museum and on the south side of Sebastian Inlet feeding along the rocks. In the water surrounding the park Atlantic bottlenose dolphins are commonly seen. Manatees inhabit these waters from March to October. The most endangered whale species in the world is the right whale, with a population of only a few hundred. During the months of January and February, right whales can sometimes be observed traveling close to the coast. Raccoons, opossums, and many other small animals can be routinely observed. Bobcats, alligators, and river otters are occasionally seen.

Wildlife viewing is also at the Bayside Marina, and the marina docks are a great location for various bird species, manatee and dolphin viewing year round.  Please call the Bayside Marina for inquiries about private wildlife viewing tours and canoe/kayak tours, (321) 724-5424.

Amenities

Pets
Domestic pets are permitted in designated day-use areas at all Florida State Parks. They must be kept on a handheld leash that is six feet or shorter and be well-behaved at all times. Pet owners are required to pick up after their pets and properly dispose of their droppings. Pets are not permitted on beaches or playgrounds, or in bathing areas, cabins, park buildings or concession facilities. Individual parks may have specific areas prohibiting pets. Service animals are welcome in all areas of Florida State Parks.  For further information, please visit the Florida Park Service Pet Policy.

Picnic Pavilion
Four waterfront picnic pavilions are clustered together on the south side of Sebastian Inlet. Each picnic pavilion can accommodate up to sixty people each and can be reserved from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. For reservations, please call (772) 589-9659. Nearby restroom and pavilion have ADA accommodations.

Historic Site
Come and experience why this area has come to be known as the "Treasure Coast." The McLarty Treasure Museum is located at the south boundary of the Sebastian Inlet State Park. Situated on a survivors' camp of the wrecked 1715 Spanish Plate Fleet, the museum features artifacts, displays, and an observation deck that overlooks the ocean. An Arts and Entertainment television production, "The Queen's Jewels and the 1715 Fleet" tells how the ill-fated fleet was returning to Spain when a hurricane struck them off the Florida coast. Still today, salvagers work to recover gold, silver, and the "Queen's jewels"; that were lost to the sea and its sandy shores. The last movie for the day at the McLarty Museum begins at 3:15 p.m.

The Sebastian Fishing Museum is devoted to the rich cultural history of Sebastian's fishing industry. The lives and history of the people who lived in Sebastian were interwoven with fishing and the Indian River Lagoon. The museum commemorates three of Sebastian's early families that operated fish houses: Sembler, Smith, and Judah. Inside you will find a replica of an original fish house and dock. A homemade fishing boat, nets, fishing gear, and photos of fishing in the lagoon are also on display.

Both museums are open 7 days a week, from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., except major holidays. Entry fee for the McLarty Museum is $2 a person. There are no additional fees for the Fishing Museum beyond normal park entry fees.

Accessible Amenities
Sebastian Inlet State Park is committed to providing a variety of amenities accessible to all of its visitors.  These amenities include:

Campsites
Picnic Tables
Grills
Park Brochure & Publications (large print available)
Park Programs (sign interpreters upon advanced request)
Fishing Piers and Catwalks
Boat Ramps & Canoe and Kayak Launch Areas
Covered Picnic Pavilions
Restaurant & Giftshops
Museums
Beach Accesses & Beach Wheelchair
Marina
Fishing Cleaning Station
Wildlife Viewing Areas

Boat Ramp
Boat launch ramps are available on both sides of Sebastian Inlet. The main boat launch facility with four boat ramps is located on the south side of Sebastian Inlet. It is open 24 hours, every day. A mile north of Sebastian Inlet, the Bayside Marina boat ramp is open only during Bayside Marina business hours. Ramp docks are ADA accessible.

A non-motorized boat launch is located on the south side of Sebastian Inlet at Coconut Point. Canoes, kayaks and sailboats are easily launched from this sandy, gentle sloping area.
The boat ramp fee is $4 + tax. This is in addition to the Admission Fee.

Beaches
Over three miles of ocean facing beaches make Sebastian Inlet State Park a favored site for beachcombing, surfing, and fishing.

Visitors to coastal parks are reminded to pay close attention to the Warning Flag Signs posted at welcome stations and on the beaches. These flags indicate the swimming conditions at the beach. Double red flags mean absolutely no swimming because of high winds and undertow currents; yellow means swim with caution and stay close to shore; green means that the waters are safe; purple means that marine pests are present. Please use caution! Lifeguards are not provided.

Canoe Kayak Launch
Non-motorized water vessels can be launched at both Bayside Marina and the south side of Sebastian Inlet State Park.  Inquiries to the Bayside Marina can be made by calling (321) 724-5424.

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