Whether you prefer to spend your vacation in a setting closer to nature, or if you just want to spend a night or two shedding the trappings of civilization, Indian River County is a great place for being outdoors.
The St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park can be reached without a boat. There are five primitive campsites in the preserve. (321) 953-5004. North entrance is on CR 507 just north of the C54 canal. South Entrance is on CR 512, just west of CR 510.
If you're looking to be surrounded by water, the picturesque Islands in the Indian River are what you're looking for. Many rules and regulations apply and there's no electricity, but what can replace the sound of water lapping gently on the shore as you close your eyes for a sound sleep? For details about camping on the Islands in the Indian River Lagoon, visit http://www.spoilislandproject.org/ which gives details about all of the islands.
Only islands designated as "Active Recreation" are suitable for overnight camping. To coordinate camping activities on the islands North of Vero Beach contact the DEP office at 3783 N. Indian River Drive, Cocoa FL 32926, (321) 634-6148 or for islands south of Vero Beach contact the DEP office at 3300 Lewis Street, Fort Pierce, FL 34981, (772) 429-2999. Also visit Florida's Department of Environmental Protection website for general information.
The Donald MacDonald Campgrounds on the banks of the St. Sebastian River not only offer primitive campsites, but also have other amenities such as restrooms, hot and cold water, showers, an observation boardwalk and nature trails. Call (772) 589-0087 for more information.
Sebastian Inlet State Park on State Road A1A also offers 51 campsites -- all with water, electrical hook-ups, a fire ring with grill and a picnic table. For more information call: (321) 984-4852.
For those who want to freshwater fish and camp, Blue Cypress Lake west of Vero Beach offers facilities. Call (772) 778-0150.
RV Parks - There are also RV parks in the area -- I-95 & CR 512 (Exit 69) in Sebastian, and US Hwy 1, just south of Sebastian in Wabasso.
There are 29 Parks throughout Indian River County maintained by the State, Cities, or the County (a complete list is given below). These areas provide residents and visitors a place to unwind and have fun and each has something unique to offer. Parks and amenities are listed by the city or area in which the park is located. There are Beach Parks, River Parks, and Interior Parks. For those near water, please see the water safety guidelines and Beach Flag Advisory.
VERO BEACH/VERO BEACH AREA
- Golden Sands Beach Park: North A1A (1.4 miles north of County Rte 510), (772) 581-4995 -- restrooms & showers, picnic tables & grills, playground
- Humiston Park: Ocean Drive (300 yards south of Beachland Blvd.), (772) 231-5790, restrooms & showers, picnic tables & grills, playground
- Jaycee Park: Ocean Drive or State Rte A1A (north of Beachland Blvd.), (772) 231-0578 -- restrooms & showers, picnic tables & grills, playground, volleyball pit, restaurant
- South Beach Park: at end of 17th Street Bridge, east of State Rte A1A, (772) 231-4700 -- restrooms & showers, picnic tables & grills, playground
- Tracking Station Park: State Rte A1A one mile north of Beachland Blvd, entrance by convenience store & Eckerds Pharmacy, (772) 492-2411 -- restrooms & showers, picnic tables & grills, playground
- Round Island Beach Park: South State Rte A1A,
restrooms & showers, picnic tables & grills, playground
Vero Beach Parks on the Indian River
- Bethel Creek House: State Rte A1A opposite Jaycee Park on Bethel Creek Canal, (772)231-2123
- Riverside Park: south of east end of Merrill Barber Bridge (Beachland Blvd), (772) 231-4787 -- restrooms & showers, picnic tables & grills, fitness trail, tennis complex, boat ramp
- MacWilliam Park: north of east end of Merrill Barber Bridge (Beachland Blvd),
(772) 567-2144, boat ramp, baseball complex
- Round Island Park West: south State Rte A1A at County Line
boat ramp, restrooms & showers, picnic tables & grills, playground
- A.W. Young Park: 21st Street east of Indian River Blvd. (on the west side of the Indian River) restrooms & showers, picnic tables & grills
Vero Beach Inland Recreational Parks
- Charles Park: 15th Street & 24th Avenue, restrooms, picnic tables & grills, playground
- Gifford Park: 4680 43rd Court, (772) 770-5312; restrooms, sports activities areas
- Kiwanis-Hobart Park: 58th Avenue & 77th Street, (772) 581-4996
restrooms, picnic tables & grills, playground, baseball
- Leisure Square: 3705 16th Street, (772) 770-6500
a wonderful facility with swimming pool, ball fields, basketball, indoor racquetball, restrooms, picnic tables, restrooms
- 19th Street & 25th Avenue Park
- 16th Street Complex: 16th Street at 17th Avenue, across from Vero Beach High School - restrooms, ballfields
- Piece of Pie Park: 37th Avenue & Atlantic Boulevard in MacAnsh Park: playground
- Pocahontas Park: 21st Street & 14th Avenue in downtown Vero Beach: shuffleboard, picnic tables
- South Country Regional Park: 20th Avenue off Oslo Road: sports fields, restrooms, playground
- Troy Moody Park: Victory Blvd. & Cordova Avenue
SEBASTIAN AND SEBASTIAN AREA
Parks on the Ocean
- Sebastian Inlet State Park, State Route A1A.
Known for its fishing, surfing, and quiet beaches. Visit the http://www.floridastateparks.org website for more information.
Parks on the Indian River (in or near Sebastian)
- Main Street Boat Dock: Indian River Drive at Main Street: boat ramp
- Riverview Park: at end of County Rte 512 and Indian River Drive boat ramp, large pavilion with picnic tables, playground, volleyball pit
Parks on the San Sebastian River
- Donald MacDonald/Dale Wimbrow Park: County Rte 505, two miles south of US 1 intersection in Roseland, (772) 589-0087; boat ramp, camping, restrooms, playground
- Roseland Community Center & Park: Bay Street and 130th Street
- St. Sebastian River Preserve State Park, (State Park). North entrance is on CR 507 just north of the C-54 canal. South Entrance is on CR 512, just west of CR 510 and Sebastian River Middle School. Open 8am to 5pm. The 22,000 acre preserve offers 40 miles of hiking, biking and horseback, riding trails, primitive camping and fishing. (321) 953-5004
Inland Recreational Parks in Sebastian
- Barber Street Sports Complex & Park: Barber Street & Tulip Drive: restrooms & sports field
- Easy Street Park: Lake Drive & Easy Street: lake
- Lake Hardee Park: Barber Street & Lake Drive: picnic tables & fitness trail
- Schumann Drive Park: Schumann Drive & Englar Drive: tennis
WABASSO & WABASSO AREA
Parks on the Ocean
- Treasure Shores Park: State Rte A1A three miles north of County Rte 510, (772) 581-4997 -- restrooms & showers, picnic tables (no fires)
- Wabasso Beach Park: end of County Rte. 510, (772) 581-4998
restrooms & showers
- Wabasso Causeway Park: County Rte 510 at the Wabasso Bridge
boat ramp, fishing pier, restrooms, picnic tables & grills
- West Wabasso Park: 64th Avenue & 89th Place: restrooms, picnic tables & grill, playground
- St. Sebastian River State Buffer Preserve, off County Rte. 512 in Fellsmere.
- Fellsmere Little League Field: County Rte 512 at Broadway: restrooms, playground, baseball field
- Oleander Street: South Oleander Street off County Rte. 512: restrooms, playground
- Washington Park at Carter Subdivision: South Orange Street
INLAND RECREATIONAL PARKS -- WEST OF Vero Beach
- Blue Cypress Lake Park, located 28 miles west of Vero Beach and approximately 4 miles north of State Road 60 on Blue Cypress Road, is famous for excellent freshwater fishing and the beautiful cypress which surrounds the shore. You can rent boats and purchase bait. Restrooms, water, and picnic areas are available.
WATER SAFETY GUIDELINES
- Know local weather conditions before heading for the water.
- If you're at the ocean, check surf conditions before entering the water. Colored flags near life guard towers or at beach entrance will indicate safety levels. (see Beach Flags below)
- Remember the 'buddy system'. Never swim alone.
- Stay within designated swimming areas.
- Don't swim near pilings, piers, diving platforms.
- Currents are dangerous. Don't swim against one. If caught in one, swim gradually out of the current by swimming across it.
- Watch out for aquatic life and plants. Leave them alone. They could be dangerous.
- Before diving or snorkling, take lessons.
- Avoid alcohol or anything else which could impair judgement and coordination.
BEACH FLAG ADVISORY SYSTEM
Flag warning system keeps beachgoers informed about daily beach and water conditions.
- Green Flag. Conditions are ideal for swimming.
- Yellow Flag. Indicates caution should be used when entering any body of water. This flag is flown for normal conditions to remind swimmers to stay alert. There may be strong currents, a sudden drop-off, or bait fish in the water.
- Blue Flag. Indicates a potential problem with jellyfish, Portuguese man-o-war, stingrays or other marine life that could be a hazard for swimmers. Blue flags can be used in combination with other flags.
- Red Flag. No Swimming. Flown when conditions are determined to be out of the ordinary, such as presence of strong wind, strong current or large surf. Adult swimmers should stay in water no more than waist deep and non-swimmers and children should be kept along the surf line.
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