Wildlife and Activities at Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park

Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park has a beautiful stretch of sandy beach overlooking the peaceful waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Residents share this tropical paradise with shorebirds, dolphins, pelicans, and other wildlife as well as boaters, keen anglers, and vacationing families.

Photo by Jennifer Brinkman.

Photo credit Jennifer Brinkman

The park covers 199 acres of coastal habitat used by shore and wading birds, reptiles, and small mammals. The warm waters hide a reef just offshore sheltering soft corals, mollusks, fish, and crustaceans. As well as being a nesting area for sea turtles, the state park provides a feeding ground for the occasional visiting manatee.

Located on Gulfshore Drive, the park is open daily from 8 a.m. to sunset.

Fishing at Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park

This Gulf-front state park is popular with anglers and there are designated areas within the park for fishing enthusiasts to cast their lines. The best area for catching trophy fish is at the north end of the park around the actual pass, which is a designated fishing area. You can fish from the shoreline or wade out into the waters of Turkey Bay, but you do need a fishing license from the Florida fish and Wildlife Commission.

MustDo.com | Fishing Delnor Wiggins Pass State Park Naples, Florida. Photo by Jennifer Brinkman.

Photo credit Jennifer Brinkman

Those wanting to fish offshore can launch their boat at Turkey Bay and then enjoy puttering around the estuaries of the Cocohatchee River or sail out into the Gulf of Mexico in search of that prize catch.

Wildlife Activities

The Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park has an interpretive exhibit for recognizing the shore birds and wildlife you may see during your visit. There is a mile-long hiking nature trail and boardwalk that winds through the undeveloped hammock from the car park to the observation tower.

MustDo.com | Nature boardwalk observation tower Delnor Wiggins Pass State Park Naples, Florida. Photo by Jennifer Brinkman.

Photo credit Jennifer Brinkman

Rangers offer free guided walking tours every Thursday at 9:30 a.m. so it’s worth arriving early and joining in the fun. Most wildlife programs organized within the park are included within your entry fee of $6 per vehicle. Bring binoculars and view the resident ospreys, eagles, owls, and shore birds.

Visitors can also take part in the onsite geocaching treasure hunt using a GPS device. Details can be downloaded from the geocache website.

Swimming and Snorkeling

No swimming is permitted in the Wiggins Pass area due to strong currents, but there is a whole mile of oceanfront from the southern end of the park. You can also snorkel in this area as there is a hard bottom reef running parallel to the shore. The closest place to reach the reef is from parking area 2. It is even suitable for scuba diving in places.

Concessions and Amenities

There are plenty of facilities for visitors to Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park besides the sand and sea. The park has six parking lots each with restrooms, drinking fountains, picnic tables, and fresh water shower facilities.

MustDo.com | Picnic area Delnor Wiggins Pass State Park Naples, Florida. Photo by Jennifer Brinkman.

Photo credit Jennifer Brinkman

There is a picnic pavilion available for rent so you can meet up with friends and celebrate a special event. There is also a concession providing equipment rentals including paddleboards, kayaks, canoes, beach chairs, and umbrellas. Naples Beach Adventures also provide food, drinks and ice cream, so just bring yourself and a towel and everything else is already here for you!

MustDo.com | Concessions Delnor Wiggins Pass State Park in Naples, Florida. Photo by Jennifer Brinkman.

Photo credit Jennifer Brinkman

Visit MustDo.com for additional information about Naples beaches and things to do in Naples and Marco Island, Florida.

Written by:

Nita Ettinger is Co-publisher for Siesta Publications Inc. and the Editor in Chief for Must Do Visitor Guides. Must Do Visitor Guides provides Southwest Florida visitor information through printed magazines and the website MustDo.com. Must Do magazines are published bi-annually and are available at no cost in Sarasota, Lee, and Collier County Chamber of Commerce, visitor information centers, select Southwest Florida hotels, and wherever free publications can be found.