Little Talbot Island State Park

Talbot Island State ParkLittle Talbot Island State Park is in the Northeast corner of Florida on the north side of Jacksonville. The Talbot Islands State Parks is a system of parks that include Little Talbot Island, Amelia Island, George Grady Bridge State Fishing Pier, Big Talbot Island, Fort George Island, Yellow Bluff Fort and Pumpkin Hill Creek Preserve. We visited most of these yesterday but ran out of time for Amelia Island, Yellow Bluff and Pumpkin Hill. We will try those again on another day. We talked to the Park Ranger at the check-in station and he was very nice and informative. The price for entrance was only $5 per car for the day and the ranger allowed us to go over to the camping area to check it out and take some pictures.

The Little Talbot Island Park has a beach side with fishing, picnicking, shelling, surfing, swimming, biking and hiking. There is no swimming at the south end of the park because of the bad rip-currents and the steep drop-offs and the erosion control efforts underway. It is also closed to traffic of all kinds including foot, bike and cars. The park has a bike lane along most of the road down the beach side. There are picnic shelters, barbeques grills, a couple of volleyball areas, and bath houses with bathrooms, changing rooms and outside showers. Everything is in good repair now and very clean. You will have to park in the designated parking areas and walk to the beach down the wooden paths. You might want to have your stuff in one of those rolling carts because it is a bit of a hike. Pets are not allowed on the beach. Oh yea, all the state parks have aluminum can bins next to the trash cans. They turn in the cans to help fund the park maintenance efforts. So, please recycle your cans when you visit!

The camping area is across A1A from the Main Park Entrance. You will need a passcode to get in. There are 40 campsites of which 24 are designated for RVs in the area along Myrtle Creek. There is a boat launch near campsite 34. There are lots of low hanging trees so some of the campsites have height limitations as well as length limits. The four remaining sites will fit a 30 foot camper but are non-reservable as they are used for the Camp Host/Hostess and other volunteers. Most of the campsites have some shade to full shade except for the 3 sites next to the boat launch area which have a great view of the creek. They also have a children’s playground, an open field area for groups, 2 large bath houses with showers, bathrooms, changing rooms and sinks. All of the sites have a picnic table, barbecue grill, electricity, water and a clothes line. The dump station is located near the camping area entrance.

15 Feet Back-In 30amp – 8
20 Feet Back-In 30amp – 6
25 Feet Back-In 30amp – 3
30 Feet Back-In 30amp – 6
30 Feet Pull-Through 30amp – 1

The sites are very clean and in good repair, the bath house is also in great shape and clean as well. The road leading in and around the camping area is made from shell and rocks and now is in pretty decent shape but a few holes now and then. You can bring your pets but they must be on a leash, cannot be left in the camper for more than 30 minutes at a time, you must clean up after them and they must be controllable without disturbing other campers. All registered campers have access to the beach-side during their stay as there is nowhere to swim in the camping area. Kayaking is real big in the area because of all the small creeks. You can rent a kayak from the Amelia Kayak place just down the street. You can also rent bicycles from the ranger station $2/hour, $10/day or $15/weekend. Right now camping costs $27.12 per night but if you are a Florida Senior or Florida Disabled Citizen the cost is only $13.56 per night. You can drop-in and get a site but reservations are encouraged especially for weekends even in the winter.

Last but not least is our overall opinion of the park and camping area. We found the place to be clean, in good repair and during a winter weekday both areas are very peaceful. We don’t recommend swimming now as the water is a brisk 64 degrees but the sun was out, a light breeze off the ocean and it was very nice to stroll along the paths at the beach and play on the playground in the camping area. The undeveloped boat launch in the camping area is simply a cleared dirt area leading down into the creek. There is a little dock next to it with a sink and hose for cleaning your fish and pvc pipe pieces nailed to the railing to place your poles in while you wait for a fish to bite. ****Warning the Mosquitoes are horrendous during all the seasons but the winter time so bring lots of mosquito repellent and as with all places in Florida you should have an ample supply of sunscreen!****

Florida Residents can get a saltwater shore line fishing license for FREE or pay a couple of dollars if order off the internet. Nonresident saltwater anglers must buy a regular nonresident saltwater fishing license at $17 for three days, $30 for seven days or $47 for one year, regardless of whether they fish from shore or a vessel. These prices include administrative fees, but handling fees are added. Some exemptions are: You are a child under 16 years of age. You are a Florida resident age 65 or older possessing proof of age and residency or possessing a Resident Senior Citizen Hunting and Fishing Certificate. Residents age 65 or older may get, at no cost, complimentary hunting and fishing certificates from county tax collectors’ offices. You are a resident who is a member of the Armed Forces of the United States, you are not stationed in this state, and you are home on leave for 30 days or less, upon submission of orders.

Other Activities at the Park:

Ranger Guided Interpretative Program is given every weekend. Program subject, time and place is posted in the Ranger Station.

DISCOVERING ARCHAEOLOGY – Little Talbot Island State Park – Semi-Annual.
Bring the family to discover how archaeologists reconstruct the lives of ancient people who once lived at the Talbot Island State Parks. This hands-on interpretive presentation is intended to inspire young minds to learn about and appreciate Native American culture through the objects they have left.

UP, UP AND AWAY! – Little Talbot Island State Park – Annual.
Children’s kite-making workshop.

FLORIDA SEA TURTLES – Little Talbot Island State Park – Summer months.
Florida’s beaches are critical nesting habitat for many species of sea turtles. This illustrated presentation emphasizes the importance of these magnificent and gentle creatures by telling the story of the variety of sea turtles, their life cycle, how the world has united to protect these endangered species, and what you can do to help make sure their survival.

Little Talbot Island State Park
12157 Heckscher Drive
Jacksonville, Florida 32226
(904) 251-2320
Ranger Station opened from 8am to Sunset
Resident Staff After Sunset can be reached at (904) 251-2329 or (904) 251-2331
https://www.floridastateparks.org/park/Little-Talbot-Island

Stuff to Do and Where to Buy the Essentials

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Local Attractions:

Amelia Island State Park
State Road A1A North
Jacksonville, Florida 32226
(904) 251-2320

http://www.floridastateparks.org/ameliaisland/default.cfm

Beaches, Canoeing, Fishing, Horse/Equestrian Trail, Pets Welcome, Restroom facilities, Shelling and Wild Life Viewing

Admission Fee:

$2.00 per person. Please use the honor box to pay fees. Correct change is required.

Hours: 8:00am to Sunset

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Big Talbot Island State Park
State Road A1A North
Jacksonville, Florida 32226
(904) 251-2320
http://www.floridastateparks.org/bigtalbotisland/default.cfm

Beaches, Bicycling, Boat Ramp, Boating, Canoeing/Kayaking, Fishing, Hiking/Nature Trail, Pets Welcome, picnicking, Restroom Facilities, Shelling, and Wildlife Viewing

Admission Fee:
Please use the honor box to pay fees. Correct change is required. Limit 8 people per vehicle.

$2.00 per person to use the George Crady Bridge Fishing Pier. (There is no shade on the Bridge and You are exposed to the elements. It is a long walk across the bridge and you should have a wheeled cart)

$3.00 per vehicle entrance fee to use the Bluffs picnic area. (You have to use the Hiking Trail from Picnic and Parking area down to the beach about 1/4 mile. The restroom is just a Port-a-potty. There is lots of shade in the picnic area. There is no swimming on the beach because there are too many tree parts in the water up and down the beach) ***There is Construction going on in front of this area for the Timucuan Trail Parks Project.

$4.00 to use the boat launch.

Generally Hours are from 8:00am to Sunset

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Kingsley Plantation
11676 Palmetto Avenue
Ft George Island, Florida 32226
(904) 251-3537
http://www.nps.gov/timu/historyculture/kp_visiting.htm

Part of the National Parks System, open to the public and Free.
Historical Self-Guided Tour of the House, Grounds and Slave Quarters

Hours: 9:00am to 5:00pm

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Pumpkin Hill Creek Preserve State Park
13802 Pumpkin Hill Road
Jacksonville, Florida 32226
(904) 696-5980
http://www.floridastateparks.org/pumpkinhill/default.cfm

Bicycling, Canoeing & Kayaking, Fishing, Hiking/Nature Trail, Horse/Equestrian Trail, Interpretive Exhibit, Pets Welcome, Restrooms, Wildlife Viewing

Admission Fee:
No entrance fee is required to enter this park.

Hours: 8:00am to Sunset

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Mayport Ferry aka St Johns River Ferry
Connecting Mayport Village & Fort George Island
4610 Ocean Street
Atlantic Beach, Florida 32233
(904) 241-9969
http://www.stjohnsriverferry.com/
Fares:
Pedestrian/Bicycle $1.00
Motorcycle $3.00
2 Axle Vehicle $5.00
Each Additional Axle $1.00/Axle
Passenger Bus $10.00
Coupon Book (20 Crossings) $60.00
Semi-Tractor/Trailer Prohibited

FROM MAYPORT VILLAGE TO FT. GEORGE ISLAND
Mon.-Fri. 6:00 am, 6:20 am, 7:00 am, and continuing on the hour and half hour, with the final departure at 7:00 pm. Sat. & Sun. 7:00 am, 7:20 am, 8:00 am and continuing on the hour and half hour, with the final departure at 8:30 pm.

FROM FT. GEORGE ISLAND TO MAYPORT VILLAGE
Mon.-Fri. 6:10 am, 6:40 am, 7:15 am, and continuing on the quarter after and quarter before the hour, with the final departure at 7:15 pm. Sat. and Sun. 7:10 am, 7:40 am, 8:15 am and continuing on the quarter after and the quarter before the hour, with the final departure at 8:45 pm.

**The ferry operates every day, including holiday**

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Ribault Club
11241 Fort George Road
Fort George Island, Florida 32226
904 251-1050
http://theribaultclub.com/

Tour Historic Building, Walk the Grounds, Picnic Table on the River

Hours: 9:00am to 5:00pm Open to Public Except During Events

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Hospitals and Urgent Care Facilities

(listed by closest driving times)

Baptist Medical Center Nassau
1250 South 18th Street
Fernandina Beach, Florida 32034
(904) 321-3500

Shands Hospital
580 West 8th Street
Jacksonville, FL 32209
(904) 383-1013

St Vincents Medical Center
1 Shircliff Way
Jacksonville, FL 32204
(904) 308-7300

Baptist Medical Center
800 Prudential Drive
Jacksonville, FL 32207
(904) 202-8000

Nemours Children’s Clinic
807 Childrens Way
Jacksonville, FL 32207
(904) 697-3600

Memorial Hospital
3625 University Boulevard South
Jacksonville, FL 32216
(904) 399-6111

St. Luke’s Hospital
4201 Belfort Rd
Jacksonville, FL 32216
(904) 296-3700

Mayo Clinic and Hospital
4500 San Pablo Road,
Jacksonville, FL 32224
Main Number (904) 953-2000
Emergency Room (904) 956-0037

Baptist Medical Center Beaches
1350 13th Avenue South
Jacksonville Beach, FL 32250
(904) 627-2900

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Amelia Urgent Care
96279 Brady Point Road
Fernandina Beach, FL 32034
(904) 321-0088

Solantic Urgent Care
464016 State Road 200
Yulee, FL 32097
(904) 261-3913

Solantic Urgent Caremore info?
2032 Dunn Avenue
Jacksonville, FL 32218
(904) 757-2008

Places for Supplies:

Food

Kangaroo Express
9615 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 251-3302 ?

Gate Food Post
4100 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 757-0891

Miss Marilyn Louise Inc
5084 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 219-1982

Restaurants

Sandollar Restaurant & Marina
9716 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 251-2449

Nicole’s On the River
9429 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 251-9977

Fish At Palms
6359 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 619-8264

Chowder Ted’s Inc
5215 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 714-6900

Aunt M at the Kangaroo Express
5001 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 751-6294

Wendy’s
10101 New Berlin Road, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 714-9158

GAS

Gate Food Post
4100 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 757-0891
Regular Gas and Diesel

Kangaroo Express
5001 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL 32226-3047
(904) 751-6294 ?
Regular Gas and Diesel

Kangaroo Express
9615 Heckscher Drive, Jacksonville, FL
(904) 251-3302 ?

Propane Filling Stations

U-Haul of Neptune Beach
600 Atlantic Blvd
(W Of The Beach)
Neptune Beach, FL 32266
(904) 249-3786
Hours
Mon-Thur: 7 am – 7 pm
Fri: 7 am – 8 pm
Sat: 7 am – 7 pm
Sun: 9 am – 5 pm

A little word about Volunteering in the State and National Parks. Little Talbot Island has one Camp Hostess now but is looking for another one. You must fill out an application and give references. The application can be picked up at the ranger station or online at: www.floridastateparks.org A Camp Host/Hostess must work about 20 hours per week, emptying trash, cleaning the camping areas and the bathrooms. Host/Hostess must commit to at least 1 month service and can stay about 4 months before you must move on to another park or take a break. In return you get a FREE camping site with electricity, water and a dumping station access. Talbot Island also seeks volunteers for Bird counting and observations, Turtle counting and observations, Surveyors using GPS, Maintenance Workers, Beach Patrol, Ribault Club Greeters and non-personal interpretation such as updating brochures, marketing and writing articles. You can contact the park directly and ask for the Volunteer Coordinator if you would like more information at (904) 251-2320.

Map of the Area:

Little Talbot Island State Park Map

Our Movie in pictures of Little and Big Talbot Island State Park