Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park offers visitors not only a sanctuary to escape their busy lives and relax, but also more than enough worthy recreations to satisfy the most ardent outdoor enthusiast. Located on the most southern part of Key Biscayne, only a few minutes from downtown Miami, Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park was voted one of the “Top Ten Beaches in the US” by Dr. Stephen Leatherman, also known as “Dr. Beach.” With more than 1.2 miles of sandy beach along the Atlantic coast, the Park is also home to the historic Lighthouse, one of the oldest landmarks in South Florida. So, whether you are looking for a unique experience or simply spending a stress-free day outdoor, Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park lets you choose from a wide range of activities, including picnicking, swimming, fishing, kayaking, and more.
This park was first named Cape of Florida by Ponce de Leon, one of the first Spanish explorers to reach the cost of Florida in 1513. In 1825, the 95ft historic Lighthouse was built and was later destroyed by the Seminoles. It was then renovated in 1846 and today it has an imposing stature dominating the park’s landscape as it stands over the beach. You can take a guided tour of the Lighthouse from Thursday through Monday at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Although you will have to climb 109 steps to reach the top, the historic Lighthouse offers a magnificent view of Miami and Biscayne Bay.
Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park is known to be low-key while allowing visitors to have an exceptional recreational experience around the following activities:
Taking a plunge on the park’s beautiful beach can be very soothing when combined with sunbathing and some walking. The beachfront offers over a mile long of Atlantic beach that is available for swimming. You can enter the beach from three different access points including area A, B, and C.
Picnicking at Bill Baggs Cape Florida Park is made easy by the barbecue grills and the 18 covered pavilions that provide shades and are available to rent. It is important to reserve the space in advance for a fee. Additionally, the picnic pavilions can accommodate 40 people with 6 tables and 80 people with 10 large tables. The park’s concession also lets you rent beach chairs and umbrellas. So, whether you are visiting the park with your family or a larger group, you can always take advantage of the shaded picnic area as it overlooks the Atlantic Ocean and Biscayne Bay.
Biking and Hiking
If you’re up for a bike ride or some hiking, the park offers a paved and unpaved trail that takes you through a flat terrain where you can observe the different plants and wildlife while enjoying the view of Biscayne Bay. Individual and squad bikes are available to rent from the concession stand located next to the Lighthouse.
Kayaking and Canoeing
The Park offers kayaking and canoeing and allows you to launch and make land from Beach Access #1 in Area A. It is recommended to arrive at the park early on weekends to find a parking not far from the allowed launching area. You can bring your own kayaks and canoes or rent from the park’s concession.
Bill Baggs Cape Florida Park offers a primitive youth/group camp that is available to organized and chaperoned youth groups as well as adult groups; though youth groups always have priority. Grills, fire rings, picnic tables, tent platforms and benches are available for groups to use. It is important to contact the park’s office while in the planning stage of your expedition as they have a set of rules you’ll have to follow.
The seawall, which is located along Biscayne Bay, is very popular and offers some of the best shoreline fishing in South Florida. A fishing license is required.
Two restaurants, the Lighthouse Café and the Boaster’s Grill, let visitors experience authentic Cuban cuisine in an open-air setting with amazing views of the Atlantic Ocean and Biscayne Bay.
In sum, Bill Baggs Cape Florida Park is a beautiful place for an individual to spend a relaxing day at the beach, a family to enjoy quality time and making memories together, or a larger group to experience numerous outdoor recreational activities.
For more information about Bill Baggs Cape Florida Park, Visit www.floridastateparks.org/capeflorida.
Address: 1200 S, Crandon Boulevard, Key Biscayne, FL 33149
Fees: About $8.00 per car