Sunday, December 1, 2013

Fort Jefferson, Florida

Fort Jefferson, Florida

Fort Jefferson is within the Dry Tortugas National Park and is about 70 miles west of Key West. Fort Jefferson is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and in 1992 the fort was established as a National Park.

Fort Jefferson was built to protect on of the most deep-water anchorages in North America. Nearly 30 years in the making the Fort was never finished or fully manned. During the Civil Was the Union warships used the harbor in their effort to blockage the Southern shipping routes.

For many years the fort was used by the Union Army to house prisoners. The most famous prisoner to see the inside of the fort was Dr. Samuel Mudd, the physician who helped John Wiles Booth.

Today the 100 square mile park is mostly open water with seven small islands which is only accessible by boat or seaplane. With vast amounts of marine life and coral reefs this is an excellent place to come and explore. The shallow waters also make this an excellent place to come and snorkel and enjoy the abundance of colorful tropical fish and living coral that sits just off shore in the beautiful blue waters.

Camping in the Dry Tortugas National Park is definitely an experience of a lifetime! Imagine sleeping under the stars, on an island 70 miles from civilization, with the warm tropical breezes blowing through palm trees and the rhythmic sound of the ocean waves playing in the background. Camping is limited so make sure you make reservations ahead of time.