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Ponce Inlet

Birding / Hiking / Adventuring Roadtrip Info


Jan 2018
 Typical view [?]
Photo Galleries
Typical View (14)

Snapshots! (5)
GRADES: Click each for info, * = Note
How Big Not Rated
Importance Not Rated
Revisit? D
Birding C *
Wildlife C *
Summer Heat C
Terrain B
Fun Hike D
Maintained C
Mosquitos B
Biting Files A
Ticks A
NOTE: Only on pier
NOTE: Endless raccoons
 LOCATION: Accuracy: Read me
Map On Big Map: Click map (or on google maps). Address: 4931 S Peninsula Dr, Ponce Inlet, FL, Volusia, USA, 32127
Miles Location
6.7Port Orange, FL
12Canaveral National Seashore
15.7Tiger Bay SF
20.9Lyonia Preserve

1) What It's Like

A lighthouse in a sort of small historic park and a pier with kind of impressive wave action. This is not the place for birds - across the water is at Smyrna Dunes is I gather (have not been yet). Town of Ponce Inlet to me seemed very unwelcoming.

2) Kinds of Birds

Shore birds were on the pier itself.

3) Wildlife

Scary density of raccoons.

4) Amenities

Bathrooms and lots of signs telling you what you can't do. Gas stations and everything else surprisingly sparse in the town so plan ahead.

5) Directions

Plan to take US1 to Dunlawton Ave then reconsider.

6) Dear Ranger

Please stop yelling at me.

7) Time Requirements

If the gift shop and whatever else is in there is closed - we spent less than an hour walking around and it was plenty.


The town of Ponce Inlet gave me the creeps. I was imagining that the population was made up of everyone susceptible to being shell shocked by nearby Daytona Beach's spring break economy going overboard in the other direction. What was irritating was we kind of expected a pretty beach drive and a lighthouse - because they have websites saying that's what it is. But every possible view of the beach is blocked off by little houses or condos, there's almost no businesses around, signs were a bit threatening, and just generally get impression it would be better if you didn't visit. Signs at the park seemed to do a lot of threatening and the attendant the entrance where you pay was outright rude. 

So my point is that it's mostly NOT idyllic like you might be hoping for in a lighthouse visit.

Another weird thing - never seen so many raccoons in one place in my life. And that was really strange because it's a tiny park. I can't imagine what they could be living off of. Did they recently just chase them down here from the town? I'd like to think they have an annual festival where they wield clubs and trash can lids chasing them down the roads to this spot. Poor raccoons!

So all that said - the lighthouse wasn't open. But what could be inside that would be life changing? It was quaint but definitely not worth the drive. The pier was a view of a lively wave filled patch of land meets sea. A little magic there maybe. Lots of people fishing and taking it seriously. There were killdeer and other shorebirds actually on the pier avoiding being stepped on - never seen that. So I'd go see those two things if for some reason I was unfortunate enough to find myself in the town of Ponce Inlet but I wouldn't drive out of my way to go there.

Across the water at Smyrna dunes park I think is the go to place for birds (I made the wrong guess). Unfortunately although you could wave to people there it's a 45 minute drive.

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