Length: 25.3 miles (linear)
This section is the northern terminus of the Florida Trail. The trail passes through the Gulf Islands National Seashore (GUIS) and is the only segment of a National Scenic Trail that follows an ocean beach. Major tourist attractions include the restoration of pre-Civil War Fort Pickens and other more recent defense artillery emplacements.
The trail follows a public bicycle path thru urban Pensacola Beach and beach walks. A new addition to the Florida Trail is a 3.7-mile stretch of coastal dunes preserved as a conservation area by the Santa Rosa Island Authority and the University of West Florida.The FT at Fort Pickens passes through the site of the second Spanish settlement in Pensacola. Founded in 1722 after the first site was destroyed by the French, Presido Isla de Santa Rose served the Spanish until 1752 when it was destroyed by a hurricane. The site currently being excavated by an archeology team from the University of West Florida is located approximately a quarter of a mile east of the Fort Pickens campground. For more information contact the Western Gate Chapter