FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 6, 2014
CONTACT: Governor's Press Office, 850.717.9282, email@example.com
FOUR FLORIDA BEACHES RANKED IN TOP 10 NATIONALLY
~Dr. Beach recognizes three Florida state parks and one Florida beach as “Great American Beaches”~
St. George Island State Park offers residents and visitors access to award-winning beach.
TALLAHASSEE - Four
Florida beaches are listed as among the best in the nation in the 24th annual
Top 10 Beach List for 2014: Barefoot Beach in Bonita Springs ranked #2, St. George
Island State Park in the Panhandle ranked #3, Bill Baggs Cape Florida
State Park in Key Biscayne ranked #7 and Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park in
Naples was ranked #10.
Rick Scott said, “It is no surprise Florida’s beaches top the charts as some of
the most beautiful in the nation. I remain committed to ensuring
these treasured, natural resources remain pristine for future
generations to enjoy for years to come. They attract thousands of visitors to
Florida each year and are local treasures our residents enjoy
list is produced by coastal expert Dr. Stephen P. Leatherman, also known as
“Dr. Beach,” a professor at Florida International University. Every year,
beginning in 1991, Dr. Beach has released the top 10 beaches that best meet the
50 criteria he created to rate the nation’s best beaches. Criteria to determine
the ranking of the nation’s top beaches include beach material, water
temperature, sand softness, smell, trash and litter, safety record, and algae
in the water.
year’s list highlights the versatility of our Florida State Parks, which
include nearly 100 miles of sandy beaches,” said Florida State Parks Director
Donald Forgione. “St. George Island, Delnor-Wiggins Pass and Bill Baggs
Cape Florida State Parks all provide scenic beaches and outstanding
the four nationally ranked beaches are found within Florida State Parks.
While all three offer sandy beaches and places to sunbathe, each also
offers unique opportunities to appeal to visitors of all kinds.
George Island State Park is known for its miles of undeveloped beach – the
perfect landscape for enjoying a day in the sun. The park provides ample
opportunities for swimming, canoeing, boating, hiking, camping and nature study.
Two natural boat ramps provide access to the bay for small boats. Anglers can
fish for flounder, redfish, sea trout and other fish off the beach or in the
bay. Few parks offer better opportunities for shelling, which is a major draw
Baggs Cape Florida State Park offers a beautiful setting for sunbathing, but
also has other amenities that draw visitors year round. It is home to a
historic lighthouse that was built in 1825 and reconstructed in 1846 and is the
oldest standing structure in Miami-Dade County. Visitors come to the park to
swim, bike and kayak. Anglers can throw in their lines from the seawall along
Biscayne Bay for some of the best shoreline fishing in the region. The park
also offers two restaurants, or picnickers can reserve a pavilion and fire up
their own grill.
Pass State Park is home to many shorebirds and wildlife. Visitors enjoy many
activities like snorkeling the reef, hiking, bird-watching, fishing,
picnicking, and searching for seashells. Boaters also have the opportunity to
experience the delicate natural estuaries of the Cocohatchee River, leading out
to the Gulf of Mexico. Guided tours of the beach and surrounding area are
also available on a regular basis by experienced rangers and volunteers.
state park beaches have consistently scored high in Dr. Beach’s surveys, with
five parks previously ranked number one.
Island State Park, Dunedin, 2008
Joseph Peninsula State Park, Port St. Joe, 2002
Andrews State Park, Panama City, 1995
Beach State Park in Northwest Florida, Santa Rosa Beach, 1994
Honda State Park, Florida Keys, 1992
To plan a
visit to a Florida State Park, make a camping reservation or to find out about
events, festivals and park activities, click HERE.