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Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Gasparilla Island State Park, Florida

I have to say this was one of my favourite beaches so far in Florida. We loved our day spent at Gasparilla Island State Park.


Beware though it is a popular place so if you want parking at the beach at the end of the island you should go early. We arrived just before lunch and barely found a spot anywhere on the island. Finally after about 45 minutes of searching and waiting we found parking by an old lighthouse. We ate lunch quickly and headed to the water.


The girls had a lot of fun here in the water and the small waves.


Sierra collected small clams and new creatures we had to google... which were called Mole Crabs or Sand Fleas and are apparently edible...see HERE. Don't worry we let all of ours go.
Wondering what a mole crab would taste like...knowing full well she would never try one!
 

 Sierra perfecting her Stoop and Scoop for shells on the beach.

Aayla kept busy by playing in the sand.

After a couple hours here we decided to get in the car and see if we could find parking near the end of the island...and we did. Off we go in search of Shark teeth.

 

Sierra was the first to find a sharks tooth. To be honest we were looking for white teeth and didn't realise they turn black.

She also found this old fishing pole.

I was determined not to leave until I found a sharks tooth...luckily for everyone else I did eventually find one.

 Aayla examining the shell tree she found on the beach near the fishing pier.

She also found a dead prawn she was very disappointed she couldn't eat! She is a little seafood monster.




My prized shell I had to put back because it had this handsome, curious fellow in it. I was happy to gently place him back in the water so he could continue on his way.


I am glad that Florida allows you to take shells. I can only hope that everyone is respectful of the ones they find with living creatures in them, and that they put them back too. Throwing live shells can actually kill them so please place them back gently into the surf. 

The girls has so much fun collecting here. Sierra especially. Her highlight: when she found a dried up blow fish.

Have you visited Gasparilla Island State Park? If not you should! It is well worth the bridge toll to get here. I could have stayed longer and definitely will visit again some day.
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