Our 4 -pre-set Gulf of Mexico beach locations are located in gorgeous Pinellas County, Florida, and offer the perfect setting for your elopement.
St. Petersburg is not limited to downtown and the waters of Tampa Bay. St. Petersburg offers some of the best beaches in the state of Florida.
Ft. De Soto is located at the southwest end of St. Petersburg. It is just south of the well-known Tierra Verde area which is a community with all the best homes and amenities.
This is a vast park with intercoastal and gulf views featuring an abundance of natural beauty for as far as the eye can see. The largest park within the Pinellas County Park System, Fort De Soto Park consists of 1,136 acres made up of five interconnected islands (keys). These keys are home to beach plants, mangroves, wetlands, palm hammocks, hardwoods, and scores of native plants. (the Skyway Bridge can be a backdrop for your ceremony) There are toll fees to access this beauty. They have also recorded over 328 species of birds in a 60-year span. It also features a dog beach, 15 shelters, a campground, 2 concession stands, restrooms, a souvenir shop, 2 fishing piers, 7 miles of paved trails, and a boat launch.
It is open 7 days a week from 7 a.m. until sunset. There is a minimal toll fee to get out to the park and a $5 daily parking fee that can be paid at kiosks located in the many parking lots.
In 2005 “Dr. Beach” named it the #1 Beach in America and in 2009, Tripadvisor named it America’s Top Beach.
For nearby dining, we recommend The Island Grill & Raw Bar, Vista at the Top, and Alsace French Bistro.
This neighborhood park has a very special feature: ferries to 2 secluded barrier islands, Shell Key Preserve and Egmont Key Preserve. There is endless beauty on the islands to explore without having traveled far to reach it. These are beautiful preserves for our local marine and wildlife with no restroom facilities, so be sure to pack in and pack out so as to not leave a human footprint. There is much shallow water surrounding this island so a professional boat tour or ferry is highly suggested.
History of Ft. De Soto Park
This stunning location features soft white sandy beaches and a century-old fort. The fort itself was an old hub for the military completed on May 10, 1900, and was named after Spanish Explorer Hernando De Soto. It was purchased by the United States Federal government in 1938. In 1977, the Battery Laidley was listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The replica flag that is flown above this historic site only has 45 stars in the representation of the flag between the years of 1898-1902 which was the time period that the fort was built and finished. On the weekends you may find the park historian out and about to answer questions you may have.