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How Far is Tallahassee Florida From the Beach

What is the Closest Beach to Tallahassee Florida

How far is Tallahassee Florida from the Beach? The simple answer is 30 miles. The problem is that the beach that is 30 miles away may not be the kind of beach you are looking for.

The closest beach to Tallahassee Florida is Wakulla Beach in the St. Marks Wildlife Preserve. However, if you are looking for a powdery white sand beach with clear water to swim and lounge in, you will be disappointed.

In order to find more traditional beaches near Tallahassee Florida, you will have to travel a little further. It will be worthwhile to spend a few extra minutes.

Some of Florida’s most beautiful beaches are within a couple of hours of Tallahassee.

closest beach to Tallahassee - Bald Point Beach
While Bald Point Beach has a great view, the negatives are it is small, shallow and difficult to get to.

The Closest Beaches to Tallahassee Florida

There are two beaches that are each about 30 miles from Tallahassee. They are:

  • Mashes Sands Beach – Mashes Sands Beach is a serene and relatively secluded spot located near the town of Panacea, approximately 36 miles south of Tallahassee, Florida. This beach is part of Mashes Sands Park, which offers visitors a natural and unspoiled coastal environment. 

The beach itself is characterized by its soft sand and calm, shallow waters, making it an ideal location for families with children. The gentle slope of the shoreline ensures that the waters remain shallow for a considerable distance, providing a safe and enjoyable swimming experience. 

Additionally, the beach is less crowded than many other Florida beaches, offering a peaceful retreat for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle. This is probably the best beach option of the closest beach to Tallahassee Florida.

  •  Wakulla Beach, situated in the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge in Wakulla County, Florida, is a hidden gem known for its natural beauty and tranquil ambiance. Unlike the more commercialized beaches, Wakulla Beach offers a secluded and rustic experience, appealing to those who appreciate unspoiled nature.
How far is Tallahassee  Florida from the beach
The beach at Mashes Sands is small and cluttered, but you cannot deny the beauty of the marsh lands of St. Mark’s Refuge.

The beach itself features a mix of sandy and marshy areas, with expansive views of the Gulf of Mexico and the surrounding wetlands. The shallow waters and tidal flats create a unique coastal environment that supports a variety of wildlife, making it an excellent spot for nature enthusiasts and birdwatchers.

  • Shell Point Beach – Shell Point Beach is another well-known beach in Wakulla County, Florida. Known for its calm, clear waters, Shell Point Beach offers visitors a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. The area is also popular for birdwatching, with sightings of herons, egrets, and ospreys frequent along the shoreline and in the surrounding marshes.

Facilities at Shell Point Beach include picnic tables, grills, and a boat ramp, making it a favorite spot for both day trips and weekend getaways for locals and tourists alike.

The beach is family-friendly, offering gentle waves and a gradual slope into the water, making it ideal for swimming and wading. Sunset views from Shell Point Beach are especially breathtaking. 

Of the four beaches list here, Shell point Beach is the best option. It is small and highly valued by the local residents. The beach is about 30 miles from Tallahassee and a 40 minute drive via Route 319 to Shell Point Road.

The negatives are the water is relatively shallow, beach is small and fills up quickly. Not many commercial places nearby like restaurants and shops.

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  • Bald Point State Park (36 miles) is a great option if you want a quick beach getaway. Mashes Sands is a more natural beach with a bit of a secluded feel, while Bald Point State Park has restrooms, showers, and picnic tables, making it ideal for families. 

Bald Point State Park, located on Alligator Point in Franklin County, Florida, features one of the most picturesque and tranquil beaches in the region. The park’s beach is renowned for its pristine, unspoiled beauty and natural surroundings, offering visitors a peaceful retreat away from the more crowded tourist destinations.  The problem with Bald Point is there is a small road leading to a small park that goes through a congested area and the park fills up quickly on the weekend.

These are the closest beaches to Tallahassee Florida but not ones we can consider the best beaches near Tallahassee. One reason these beaches are not recommended like others is the shallow water for a long way offshore.

The shallows are muddy, filled with seaweed and extend quite a distance.

how far is tallahassee from the beach - Wakulla Beach
This is one of the beaches in the St. Marks Preserve (Wakulla Beach). Many of the small patches of sand here have very shallow water for a long distance offshore. Don’t plan on swimming!

The Best Beaches Near Tallahassee Florida Under Two Hours

Below we list the best beaches near Tallahassee that are rated for the quality of white powdery sand, overall beach accessibility, and nearby facilities like restrooms, picnic tables, and other features.
Each of these beaches is UNDER TWO HOURS away.
St. George Island
St. George Island Beach close to Tallahassee
The beaches of St. George Island are long, wide and perfect for all forms of water sports. Generally not many crowds.
This is one of our favorite beaches in all of Florida. St. George Island Beach is located on St. George Island, a barrier island off the coast of Florida in the Gulf of Mexico. Known for its uncluttered white sand and clear, emerald-green waters, the beach is a haven for nature lovers and those seeking a tranquil getaway. 
The island is part of Apalachicola Bay and offers a more laid-back atmosphere compared to other Florida beach destinations. The beach itself is renowned for its natural beauty, unspoiled by high-rise developments, providing visitors with a serene and scenic environment perfect for relaxation, swimming, and sunbathing.
The island is also home to St. George Island State Park, which spans nine miles of undeveloped beaches, dunes, and marshes. The park offers numerous outdoor activities, including hiking, bird-watching, fishing, and kayaking. Wildlife is abundant, with frequent sightings of dolphins, sea turtles, and a variety of bird species. The island’s charming small-town feel is complemented by a selection of local shops, restaurants, and accommodations, making it an ideal spot for those looking to experience the natural beauty and laid-back lifestyle of Florida’s Forgotten Coast.
Drive Time to St. George Island – 1 hour 45 minutes via Route 319 from Tallahassee to Route 98 which runs along the coast. Take the bridge to St. George Island from Eastpoint.
Carrabelle Beach – Near Carrabelle
beaches close to Tallahassee - Carrabelle Beach
Carrabelle Beach is an OK beach with nearby facilities and things to do. Easy to get to and is close to Tallahassee.

Carrabelle Beach, located in the coastal city of Carrabelle in Florida’s Franklin County, is a hidden gem on the Gulf of Mexico. This beach is renowned for its unspoiled natural beauty, offering visitors a peaceful retreat away from the hustle and bustle of more commercialized beach destinations. 

The soft, white sands and gentle waves create a perfect environment for sunbathing, swimming, and beachcombing. The area is also popular for picnicking, with several shaded pavilions and picnic areas available for public use.

In addition to its tranquil setting, Carrabelle Beach is known for its rich history and unique attractions. Nearby, visitors can explore the Carrabelle History Museum, which offers insights into the local heritage, including the town’s maritime history and its role during World War II. 

The Carrabelle River, which flows into the Gulf, is an excellent spot for fishing and boating. The laid-back charm of Carrabelle Beach, combined with its natural beauty and historical significance, makes it a perfect destination for those looking to experience the more authentic and quieter side of Florida’s Gulf Coast.

Drive Time to Carrabelle Beach – About one hour and 15 minutes via Route 319 south from Tallahassee to Route 98 west to Carrabelle.

Things To Do in Carrabelle Florida

Places To Stay in Carrabelle Florida

The Best Beaches Near Tallahassee over 2 Hours Away

Cape San Blas Beach
how far is Tallahassee away from the beach - Cape San Blas Beach
Cape San Blas Beach is just over 2 hours from Tallahassee. Great choice if you are looking for a beach close to Tallahassee.

Just barely over two hours away, Cape San Blas Beach, located just 25 miles west of Apalachicola on the Gulf Coast, is a picturesque destination known for its serene and unspoiled natural beauty. This beach, part of the larger St. Joseph Peninsula, features miles of pristine white sand and clear, turquoise waters, making it a favorite spot for beachgoers seeking a tranquil escape. 

The gently sloping shoreline is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and beachcombing, while the surrounding dunes and coastal forests offer scenic spots for picnicking and nature walks. The area is also renowned for its stunning sunsets, providing a breathtaking backdrop for evening strolls along the beach.

Cape San Blas Beach is also a haven for outdoor enthusiasts and wildlife lovers. The nearby St. Joseph Peninsula State Park offers opportunities for hiking, bird watching, and kayaking, with a diverse array of wildlife, including sea turtles, dolphins, and a variety of bird species. 

The beach’s laid-back atmosphere and lack of commercial development make it an ideal destination for those looking to experience the natural beauty and tranquility of Florida’s Gulf Coast, far removed from the more crowded tourist spots.

Drive Time to Cape San Blas – At just over 2 hours and 5 minutes, Cape San Blas can be accessed by Route 319 south from Tallahassee to Route 98 to Route 30A that goes to St. Joseph Peninsula.

Things To Do in Cape San Blas

Places To Stay in Cape San Blas Florida

Panama City Beach – Spring Break Capital of the World
beaches close to Tallahassee - Panama City Beach
If you are looking for a great weekend getaway from Tallahassee, Panama City Beach is a great choice for fun and a great big beach.

Panama City Beach, located just west of Panama City Florida, is a popular vacation destination known for its stunning white-sand beaches and vibrant atmosphere. 

Panama City Beach is also well known as a Spring Break location for tens of thousands of students in March and early April each year.

The beach stretches for 27 miles, offering ample space for sunbathing, swimming, and various water sports such as jet skiing, parasailing, and paddleboarding. The crystal-clear, emerald waters are not only perfect for swimming but also attract snorkelers and divers exploring the rich marine life. 

The city’s numerous beachside resorts, restaurants, and entertainment options, including beachfront bars and amusement parks, contribute to a lively and family-friendly environment that caters to all ages.

Pier Park, a sprawling outdoor shopping and entertainment complex, features a variety of shops, restaurants, and a movie theater, making it a central hub for visitors. Nature enthusiasts can explore St. Andrews State Park, which offers hiking trails, fishing spots, and pristine beaches. 

With its mix of natural beauty, recreational activities, and vibrant nightlife, Panama City Beach remains a beloved destination for both relaxation and adventure.

Drive Time to Panama City Beach – From Tallahassee Panama City Beach can be reached in less than 2.5 hours via Route 20 west from Tallahassee to Route 231 south directly to the beach. It is a relatively direct and easy drive.

Things To Do in Panama City Beach

Places To Stay in Panama City Beach

closest beach to Tallahassee - St. George Island Beach
If there were no other considerations, our choice for the closest beach to Tallahassee Florida, it would be the uncrowded shores of St. George Island.

How Far is Tallahassee From the Beach? Other Options

The Florida Panhandle has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Tallahassee is located at the gateway to this northwest Florida paradise.

If you are looking for a weekend getaway near Tallahassee that includes some beautiful beaches, here are a few more options:

  • The Beaches of Route 30A – Just a few miles west of Panama City Beach is a Florida Scenic Highway called Route 30A. Along this 28-mile stretch are a dozen or more famous beaches, resorts and attractions unlike anything else in Florida…. Read more here
  • The Cities and Towns of The Panhandle – The Panhandle of Florida has many quaint towns and stunning cities (with beaches). Read about 30 towns here
  • The Clear Water Beaches of Florida – Want to find the clear waters of Florida beaches? Find out where are the clear-water beaches in Florida….
Final Thoughts on the Closest Beach to Tallahassee Florida

We think Tallahassee is a Florida city that has many opportunities for beach vacations, weekend getaways near Tallahassee, day trips from Tallahassee and even afternoons on a nearby beach.

Tallahassee has a central location making it accessible to many Florida attractions. Maybe that is why it is the capital of Florida! Maybe the Native Americans who were here hundreds of years ago knew what they were doing!

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