Bayou Marcus Water Reclamation Boardwalk

**See the comments below.  Be aware that a reader left a comment about seeing lots of snakes on their walk on the boardwalk.  Be on the lookout if you are visiting.**

What:  a nature walk; Where: Bayou Marcus Reclamation Boardwalk; Cost: FREE

Last week after being stuck inside with chores, homework and other household items, I decided it was time to get out of the house!  A friend had told me about the Bayou Marcus Water Reclamation Boardwalk and we had been wanting to visit.  She said that she has been out there a few times and during their visits they have spotted all sorts of little critters…even deer!

We didn’t have much luck spotting too many animals but we did see lots of birds and a couple of lizards.  We went after Big S got off of school so we parked at the Fayal Drive entrance because the Alekai Drive entrance is closed at 3pm (we found the Alekai entrance while we were on the boardwalk).


I had a ton of trouble finding an actual address to the place to plug into the GPS or look up on a map.  On the website, it calls the boardwalk Northwest Florida’s Best Kept Secret.  I agree because you can’t find an address listed anywhere!  I did come across GPS points on a map on Outdoor Gulf Coast so it was easy to find after that!  When you drive down Fayal Drive you will see the gate to ECUA and to the right of you there will be a little gravel area where you can park.  You will see the entrance to the gate when you see the bright yellow sign that says the gates lock at 7pm. 

When you first walk through the gate, there are a few signs describing the wetlands as well as some birding trail pamphlets. 

The boardwalk is a lovely walk through the wetlands. 

Things to Know Before You Go:

  • Bring sunscreen and a hat for shade.  There isn’t much shade on the boardwalk. 
  • Bring water.  It got very warm and there wasn’t much of a breeze when we were there.
  • Don’t forget the Alekai Dr. entrance closes at 3pm.
  • Call the information number before you head to the boardwalk.  The website says they put closures and other announcements on the message line.

The Water Reclamation Boardwalk is located at the Bayou Marcus Reclamation Facility off of Blue Angel Parkway and Fayal Drive.  The information line is 850.458.1658.

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  1. My daughter and I love this nature trail. It’s never crowded and it’s wide enough to fit three strollers side by side. It’s a nice walk when the weather is not too hot or cold. I agree that it is a best kept secret of this area!

  2. Glad the our site was able to help you find it:) – We didn’t see much wildlife when we were there either. We did have the kids making plenty of noise. I’ve heard you can see a lot of wildlife. ~Shawn

  3. I have lived in the area my whole life and somehow missed this one. We went a couple of weeks ago and loved it. A word of caution…Stay on the boardwalk (we did)! We saw atleast seven cottonmouths while out there. The snakes were not at all shy and one even came right up to the boardwalk and seemed to be studying us as much as we were studying him.

  4. Oh my goodness! I know they caution this on the website but we didn’t see any snakes while we were there. I definitely wouldn’t recommend leaving the boardwalk. I will add a note to the post. Thanks for your comment!

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