St. Marks lighthouse is in a gorgeous area with wide open spaces. It's lovely to spend a weekend afternoon visiting the nature center and then driving Lighthouse Rd down to the tip where the lighthouse stands. All around you are pretty sights of blue water, green vegetation, and wide open blue sky. You can spot many rare and wonderful animals if you stay a while. We saw dolphins leaping to catch fish. There is a levee trail along the water, where you might see alligators. To get a view of the lighthouse pool, a pretty body of water, stand on the observation deck. There is a bench by a tree looking out on the bay. And views of the lighthouse are lovely from all different spots.
The nature center is worth a stop, on Lighthouse Rd, before you get to the lighthouse. There are nice exhibits showing animals prints, baby alligators hatching from a nest, ecosystems, and one showing how the lighthouse keeper's family, the Mungerfords, survived the massive storm of 1843 by clinging to the floor at the top of the lighthouse tower. The fifteen who took refuge at the bottom of the tower drowned.
Kids will love the fluffy audobon bird toys in the gift shop that make real bird calls.
Other places to see nearby are the beautiful Wakulla Springs, forest and sinkholes at Leon Sinks Geological area, and Tallahassee town.
St. Mark's Lighthouse nature center is located at 1255 Lighthouse Rd, St Marks FL 32355, call (850) 925-6121. The lighthouse itself is further down the road.
Entrance to the nature center is free, as is entrance to the lighthouse area.
The refuge is open daily during daylight hours.
The visitor center is open M-F 8-4, Sat and Sun 10-5. There are restrooms. Closed Thanksgiving (fourth Thurs in Nov) and Dec 25.
The keeper's house (not the tower) is open for tours the first Fri and Sat of each month, $2.
Last Updated: Sat, 23 Feb 2019 19:49:40 GMT