South-southwest of St. Petersburg, Florida, Fort De Soto Park is a park operated by Pinellas County on five offshore keys, or islands: Madelaine Key, St. Jean Key, St. Christopher Key, Bonne Fortune Key and the main island, Mullet Key. Two piers, beaches, picnic area, hiking trails, bicycling trails, kayak trail, and a ferry to Egmont Key State Park are available
View of the Sunshine Skyway Bridge
The Bob Graham Sunshine Skyway Bridge, known to locals as the Sunshine Skyway Bridge or more casually the Skyway, is a bridge spanning Tampa Bay, Florida, with a cable-stayed main span, and a total length of 21,877 feet
Fishing the Waters Near The Sunshine Skyway
One of the best spots in all of Pinellas County. Spend your day kayaking, fishing, swimming and boating at this fabulous park.
As in all Pinellas County parks there is ample covered structure for holding that special event.
Always need a playground for those little ones to unwind at. You will find a couple throughout the park.
This flag can be seen flying at the Park Headquarters.
The Big Guns
Historically, the islands were used for military fortifications; remnants and a museum exhibit this history. Two piers, beaches, picnic area, hiking trails, bicycling trails, kayak trail, and a ferry to Egmont Key State Park are available
Used to store ammunition and other supplies.
Lob a Mortar at the Enemy
Two of the four 12-inch M1890-M1 mortars
The Post and Mortar Guns
These posts were to contain batteries of artillery and mortars to protect Tampa Bay from any invading forces. Construction of Fort De Soto began in November 1898 and was completed in 1906. The foundation was constructed of a shell concrete formula and the walls and ceiling used a shell, stone and concrete mix. The main attractions at the completed post were the artillery and 12-inch coast defense mortar batteries, Batteries Laidley and Bigelow. The post consisted of 29 buildings. The post's features included a large barracks, a hospital, a guardhouse, a blacksmith and carpenter shop, an administration building, and mess hall with kitchen, a bakery, and a storehouse. The site also had brick roads, concrete sidewalks and a narrow-gauge railroad to aid in moving materials and supplies around the post.
There are a two piers for fishing and sightseeing located at the park.
Two piers, each allowing fishing. Both have bait, tackle and food concessions
Common are dolphins swimming by while feeding.
Wildlife abound with numerous species of birds that call this park home.
These cool birds use there long and strong beaks to get food in the sandy soil.
There are a few beaches that are protected nesting areas vital to the ecosystem.
Protected nesting grounds off limits to sunbathers.
Miles of pristine beach await you.
This is one of the best sections of beach anywhere in the world and a popular spot for locals.
You can park your car very near to the beach and walk a short distance to the beach.
Sugar White Sand
Grab your spot and set a couple chairs in the sand for a day of relaxing.
The shifting sands and sea oat banks offer protection for the islands.
Check out this wonderful park and the many beaches and opportunities for relaxation and fun. Truly a special place to spend the day.
The areas around Fort De Soto Park are some of the best kayaking waters in all of Florida