Refuge Trails


The Centennial Trail Boardwalk and Observation Tower

  • Meanders for 3/4 mile through restored wetlands, tidal mangroves, and hydric hammocks.
  • Incorporates over 560 engraved planks – one for each refuge in the system established between 1903 and the present, spaced throughout the length of the boardwalk. Each engraved plank includes the refuge name, its state or territory and establishment year. 
  • Includes interpretive panels on the significant accomplishments of the refuge system for wildlife conservation in America, and the people who made it happen.
  • Incorporates gently inclining slopes and eight-foot wide paths allowing universal accessibility.
  • Features an eighteen-foot tall observation tower, located among the mangrove and cabbage palm fringe of the Indian River Lagoon, which provides the closest land-based opportunity to view Pelican Island.The tower includes two mounted spotting scopes for viewing the Pelican Island rookery.
  • Constructed through a partnership with Indian River County, St. Johns Water Management District, Florida Inland Navigation District, Florida Power and Light, ConocoPhillips, Wild Birds Unlimited, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation and many others.

Centennial Trail Fact Sheet

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Centennial Trail Pond: Found along Centennial Trail. During the winter season, view a variety of migratory water fowl and wading birds. Resident wading birds can be observed year round.


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Joe’s Overlook: About a mile into the 3-mile Joe Michael Memorial Trail, enjoy an expansive salt-marsh observation deck that is frequented by a variety of shore birds, wading birds, waterfowl and raptors.


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Trailhead for Bird’s Impoundment Trail: Can be found at the Interpretive Exhibit near the public restrooms.


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Wildlife Trail:  Our newest trail is a one-mile round trip trail with wildlife viewing opportunities in multiple habitats. It is a flat, grassy stroll that passes freshwater ponds where you can hear Sora, Rails, and Common Gallinules. It creates connectivity between the north end of Jungle Trail to Joe Michael Memorial Trail and Centennial Trail.