North Beach (Fort De Soto Park)

White sand beach
J7Q6+32 Tierra Verde, FL, USA
248 miles from Panama City Beach, FL
Water quality
Grades suggested by our reviewer
Water Quality

Beach amenities

  • AccessibilityEasy beach access
  • WCPublic restrooms nearby
  • ParkingCar parking nearby
  • ShowerPublic showers available
👉 Download a FREE PDF map

About this beach

Warnings and hazards

No lifeguards.

Fort De Soto Park lies on five islands and has two main beaches where you can enjoy sunbathing, shelling, swimming, canoeing, kayaking, boating, fishing, hiking, biking, camping, and wildlife watching.

One of them is North Beach, located on the Gulf coast at the northwest end of the park. It’s a very family-friendly place where alcohol is not allowed so you’re not going to encounter big noisy companies.

Location and Access

Southwest of Tampa and south of St. Petersburg, Fort De Soto Park is located at 3500 Pinellas Bayway S., Tierra Verde. The park is ADA accessible. The beach has no admission fee but in order to get to it, you have to enter Fort De Soto Park and pay $5 for entrance. This fee also includes parking.

After entering the park, follow signs to North Beach. Once you arrive there, you will see a huge parking lot called Anderson Boulevard Parking.


North Beach has wheelchair-accessible restrooms at various locations. There is also a bathhouse where you can change and take a shower to rinse off the sand. All the facilities are well-maintained and don’t smell.


If you don’t bring your own food, don’t worry – there is a snack bar right next to the bathhouse where you can get some basic snacks, which is open from 10 a. m. to 4 p. m. on weekdays and from 10 a. m. to 5 p. m. on Saturday and Sunday.

Beach Conditions

The beach is great for adults and kids alike. It’s quite long and there are some areas where you feel as though you’re secluded.

The sand is white and talcum-soft, great for shell collecting. The water is aqua-blue and green, calm and so clear that you can see schools of fish swimming past your feet. There is a natural sandbar not far from the shore. During low tide, the water on your way to it will be as low as thigh-deep.

Kayaking, water skiing, snorkeling, boogie boarding are some popular activities at the beach. There are no lifeguards on duty. Be careful when swimming.

Gay Area

There is an unofficial gay area at North Beach. If you want to get to it, park at the far end of the parking lot, then walk, cross the “rainbow bridge”, and wade across a shallow lagoon. Once you get to the beach, continue to your right until you get to the end of the island. You will find yourself in a small unofficial gay area.

Driving Time

  • 45 minutes from Tampa, FL
  • 2 hours 10 minutes from Fort Myers, FL
  • 2 hours 10 minutes from Orlando, FL

Hotels and rentals

If you're considering staying for one or even a few nights, there are plenty of options available near the beach. Chose your preferred accomodation type and your favourite room provider:

Beaches nearby

Additionally, there's a number of beaches near North Beach (Fort De Soto Park) which you can visit:

Beach reviewed by:
Phil R.
Photos from Google Maps
Blue sky over the seaA rainbow umbrella on the beachDriftwood on the beachTrees on the beachNorth Beach at Fort De Soto Park
Show rooms near this beach×

Visitor questions:

Question: We were at the north beach at Fort De Soto today. What are all the smelly clumps of sealife laying all over the sand and in the water? It was disgusting but we are interested in what it was. Thank you
Asked by Kathy over 3 years ago
Answer: Judging by your description, you've seen Sea Pork. Two subspecies of this animal - Amaroucium stellatum and Aplidium stellatum - inhabit the waters near Fort de Soto and can sometimes be found on the sand.
Question: Hi, I have a couple of questions. If you could answer them the best you can I would be very grateful. I know it says on the site how to find the gay area. I looked around for it but couldn’t seem to find it. When you’re in the far parking lot can you tell me where to go from there? I didn’t see the rainbow bridge and I am not sure what it would look like. Then it says to cross over a lagoon - how will I know I’m there? Is it off an island? Last question: do you know if there is an unofficial nude beach area in North beach anywhere? If so, how to find it? If you could respond back the best you can I would appreciate it. Thank you.
Asked by MP over 3 years ago
Answer: Recently some visitors have reported that the Rainbow Bridge has been removed. Once you are in the far end of the parking lot, go north until the main island ends. Here, you'll see another island very close to the main one but separated from it by the lagoon (the lagoon on Google Maps, please check the satellite map version: Cross the lagoon, and you will find yourself in the gay area ( As for the nude section, North Beach doesn't have one, but East Beach does. We've described the location in detail on the page of that beach ( Also, read the users' comments on how to find the nude section, they are very informative.
Question: Where can you rent kayaks at Fort De Soto?
Asked by Melinda about 3 years ago
Answer: There are several opportunities. 1) Having passed the bridge that connects Fort de Soto with the mainland, turn right, and you will find Topwater Kayak Outpost (+17278641991). 2) Drive ahead almost till the end of Highway 679, and as soon as you've reached the parking pay booth you will see another Kayak Launch boat ramp (no contacts available). 3) From Highway 679, turn right to Anderson Boulevard and drive until you see the large Soldier Hole Lake to your right. Not far from there, you will find Canoe and Kayak Outpost (+17278641991). 4) Finally, if you drive past Soldier Hole Lake for 1 more minute, you'll reach the Coconut Kayak Tours agency that is located between Soldier Hole Lake and a small unnamed lake (+17272381960). Have a nice trip!
Question: Can anyone go to this beach?
Asked by Sheena Stevens about 3 years ago
Answer: Yes, sure! The gay area occupies the most remote beach zone only. This beach and all the available facilities are meant for everyone.

North Beach (Fort De Soto Park) videos

Fort De Soto North Beach
A gorgeous drone made video of the beach
Bike Ride along North Beach, Fort De Soto
An interesting video of a bike ride along the beach

Weather conditions

Current weather at the beach and 3 day forecast

Best times to visit

Average temperature (°F)
Beach map and directions
The beach is located in Tierra Verde, Florida J7Q6+32 Tierra Verde, FL, USA (Open on Google Maps)
Drag and zoom the map to view lodging options near the beach.
Other beaches nearby
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North Beach (Fort De Soto Park) reviews and photos
Reviewed on: April 7, 2020