Pelican Island National Wildlife Refuge
Southeast Region
Map of the Southeast Region Map of Kentucky Map of the Caribbean and Navassa Map of North Carolina Map of Tennessee Map of South Carolina Map of Arkansas Map of Louisiana Map of Mississippi Map of Alabama Map of Georgia Map of Florida

New Public Facilities Educational and Recreational Opportunities

Credit: USFWS Pelican Island View Area. Credit: USFWS Pelican Island boardwalk. Credit: USFWS Pelican view. Credit: USFWS

Click on photo for enlarement. Credit: USFWS

Refuge Hours
7:30 am - Sunset daily
Monday - Sunday.

Refuge Map -- Centennial Trail Fact Sheet - pdf

Pelican Island Visitor Facilities and Restoration Plan - pdf

Public facilities on the refuge were made open to the public on March 14, 2003 as a part of the Centennial Celebration of Pelican Island and the National Wildlife Refuge System. The facilities include a boardwalk and observation tower to view Pelican Island and 2 salt marsh impoundment trails and restrooms. Recreational Opportunities at this site include hiking, wildlife observation and photography and bank fishing.

Additional facilities are planned and are under development and will include an informational kiosk and boardwalk at the Pelican Island Welcome and Orientation Area, a 1/2 mile wildlife drive through restored habitat, and a boardwalk and covered overlook connecting Bird's and Pete's Impoundments overlooking Collin's Hole. These facilities will be integrated with the restored natural communities to provide visitors the experience of traveling along tree-lined trails and into habitat opening and edges where they can view wading birds, shorebirds, and waterfowl.

Currently, the following facilities are available for you to explore on the refuge:

The Pelican Island Welcome and Orientation Area

Northernmost parking area, restrooms and impoundment foot trial.
Park at the Orientation Area; walk north on Jungle Trail to access Bird's Impoundment Foot Trail. Bicycles, horse back riding, pets and motorized vehicles are not permitted on the trail.

Bird's Impoundment Trail
(North impoundment) 2.5 mile loop around a salt marsh impoundment. The impoundment is cooperatively managed for wading bird foraging habitat, mosquito control, and natural tidal exchange. This trail offers mangrove openings and edges to the impoundment to view wading birds, shorebirds and waterfowl.

Recreational opportunities include hiking, wildlife observation and photography and fishing. Fishing is permitted in designated areas outside of the impoundment (on the Lagoon side).

The Pelican Island Viewing Area

Located 1/2 mile south on Jungle Trail, includes parking and two foot trials. Park at the Viewing Area; Pete's Impoundment Foot Trail is accessible from the Centennial Trail. Bicycles, horse back riding, pets and motorized vehicles are not permitted on the trails.

The Centennial Trail:

1/2 mile round trip path and boardwalk culminating to an 18 ft observation tower to view Pelican Island.
Educational and Recreational Opportunities: Learn about the history of the National Wildlife Refuge System through a series of interpretive panels along the boardwalk; view the historic Pelican Island from the observation tower and observe many species of birds and wildlife of the refuge and the Indian River Lagoon.
Allow 1 hour. Disabled accessibility.

Pete's Impoundment Trail

(South impoundment) 2.5 mile loop around a salt marsh impoundment. The impoundment is cooperatively managed for wading bird foraging habitat, mosquito control, and natural tidal exchange. This trail offers mangrove openings and edges to the impoundment to view wading birds, shorebirds and waterfowl.
Recreational opportunities include hiking, wildlife observation, photography and fishing. Fishing is permitted in designated areas outside of the impoundment (on the Lagoon side).

Last updated: November 3, 2008