Shell IslandCurrently Open
- Address: 4607 State Park Lane, Panama City, FL 32408, United States, Panama City Beach
- Timings: 24-hrs Details
- Phone: +1-8502330504
- Ticket Price: Free
- Time Required: 03:00 Hrs
Shell Island - Review
You will find Florida at its natural best in this place. This is a 7- mile stretch of island that runs from the Gulf of Mexico to the St. Andrews Bay from the east to the west. This unexploited piece of land has the most spectacular views and surroundings. You will see sand dunes here that are uncommon in the other parts of the country. The Island also includes the St. Andrew’s State Park where you can go boating, kayaking or just bird watching.
This was once just a peninsula. It was later converted into an island when better communication facilities such as bridges and boats were made available to strengthen trade relations between Port Panama City and the Gulf of Mexico. It is here that the earliest Native Americans and the Spanish explorers came and settled down. This place is also known to have been the hideout of pirates at one point of time long ago.
The number of rare and exotic plant and migratory bird species found here will amaze you. Some of the plants here include scrub forests, pine hammocks, etc. There is also a lovely lake in here. You will also find a large number of beautiful land and sea creatures here that you have not seen or heard of before such as ghost crabs, shore birds, Choctawhatchee Beach Mice, piping plovers, snowy plovers, loggerheads, green sea turtles and so many more. It is simply like stepping into some other world from where you will not feel like coming back!
Shell Island Information
- This is a completely open area with no food and water facilities. You are to pack everything with you to sustain you throughout your visit.
- You will not get any washroom or toilet facilities out here.
- This place is not meant for swimming.
- The Shell Island shuttle or boats are the only ways to reach the Island.
Restaurants Near Shell Island
- Montego Bay Seafood House
- Scampy’s Seafood and Steaks
- Capt. Andersons
- Runaway Bay Caribbean Grill
- Omelet House
- Pier 77 Seafood Restaurant
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Things to Know Before Visiting Shell Island
95% of people who visit Panama City Beach include Shell Island in their plan
10 AM - 11 AM
45.76% of people start their Shell Island visit around 10 AM - 11 AM
People usually take around 3 Hrs to see Shell Island
94.43% of people prefer to travel by car while visiting Shell Island
Shell Island Trips
Shell Island, Panama City Beach Reviews
Always a great time! We always see something new. The staff are friendly and an absolute joy to be around. We typically rent a pontoon as opposed to going with the crowd, but the staff is the same and they are wonderful. Every option is reasonably priced. We go at least once a year, sometimes more if life allows it. It's become a part of our family tradition anywhere (for us) from March to September. Worth it, fun, and always memorable.
Not great at all. Very short boat ride to island. They do not pick up every half hour. Have to pay to enter park plus the ferry ride. Island sucked . I mean it's a nice beach, but not snorkel friendly . Waves break right on shore. Oh and btw, good luck finding shells. Sure 20 years ago yes, but ever since they started running shuttles out there the shells disappeared. I had much more shell hunting success on the regular beach. Oh , they say coolers recommended, but do not bring a roller cooker. Unless you want to drag it for a long distance . I took 5 people and had planned to stay most all day, but the weather turned real bad. Lightning, thunder, rain and so everyone on the island congregated at the pick up spot in this weather for about an hour and a half. No shelter, and short fuses. Keep your money and enjoy your local beach.
Okay what to expect: You will have to pay $8.00 to enter the state park, then you buy your tickets for the boat ride over to the island. We paid $97.00 for 4 adults and 1 child. After your tickets are purchased you will take a short bus ride to the pontoon boat at this point you will see dark waters turn to the beautiful clear blue waters. Once you arrive there will be a kayak rental pontoon boat and he will also sell you chips and small snacks. Take food and water with you because there isn't a place to eat and there aren't any bathrooms or shops there either. Literally you are on an island surroundedby the gulf. Its very neat to see the small coves and snorkeling by the rocks was really awesome but also hard because of the big waves coming in. We saw a lots of beautiful fish, jellyfish and even a Gar swam right in front of us. Shell island shells were okay but not what I expected them to be. I expected to see tons of shells but that wasn't the case because the boat captain takes 500-1000 people over there a day which means they are already picked over by the time the beach summer season is in full bloom. Overall it was really a fun experience. The captain was great and we did love snorkeling there.
Really had a great experience in May. They were very quick in getting us out on the water. Boat was well cared for. Took great deal of time in safety prior to us leaving dock. Thought they were easily the best deal! We will definitely use again this summer!
CAUTION: My family and I were excited to do some snorkeling at shell island but things didn't go as planned. We drove for an hour from Fort Walton to the state park. As we purchased our tickets, I noticed a sign with a "yellow" warning regarding water clarity or something but we figured it couldn't be that bad; there was a long line of people waiting for the shuttle. The images below were taken after my party of 4 paid approximately $100, took a shuttle bus and a boat to shell island. As we boarded the boat, my husband asked about the water clarity and was informed that it was due to recent rainfall. When we arrived at shell island, there was a distinct odor coming off of the water and this same weird color. We tried to give it a shot but noone wanted to be near the water. Other patrons warned us that the clarity didn't get any better so we immediately took the next available shuttle back to try and salvage our day. From my understanding, there are other shuttles that will cancel under cretain conditions. My advice would be to check around and ask questions before you waste your time and money.