The town of Apalachicola sits at the point where the namesake river and bay meet. It was part of Spanish Florida in the 1500s but the area was mostly inhabited by Native American tribes. The British captured the city in the 1700s and it became an important trading port.
In the last century, it’s been an important place for oyster fishing, but hurricanes and changes in the ecosystem have led to a downturn.
The surrounding communities, including Eastpoint, Carabelle, St. George Island, and Alligator Point are part of what is known as the Forgotten Coast tourism region.
Because most places are within Apalachicola and St. George, most of this guide focuses on these destinations.
What to Do in Apalachicola
Apalachicola Maritime Museum– This humble museum interprets the area’s ties to seafood and boat-building. They also operate sightseeing tours. 103 Water Street, Apalachicola
Apalachicola River Paddling Trail– Explore the many nearby waterways, including in the state parks. You can bring your own or rent from companies like Island Outfitters.
Apalach Tours– Navigate the waters in a vintage yacht with an expert guide that points out wildlife and describes the history of the Forgotten Coast and the Panhandle.
Breweries– The Forgotten Coast has two breweries. Oyster City Brewing in Apalachicola excels in IPAs and has plenty of outdoor seating. Across the bay, Eastpoint Beer Company has a diverse menu and ocean views.
Fishing charters– Reel in a big catch with one of dozens of fishing guides and outfitters. There are over 100 species you can find in these waters.
Historic homes- Visit the centuries-old homes of the area’s earliest residents. The John Gorrie Museum honors the inventor of mechanical refrigeration. Orman House Historic State Park is the antebellum home of a cotton merchant with an adjacent botanical garden and veterans memorial. The Raney House Museum belonged to a cotton merchant and now has local artifacts.
Where to Eat in Apalachicola
Bayside Coffee Co.– Grab a jolt at this cozy Eastpoint coffee shop. They roast in-house so you can pick up a bag to bring back to your beach house. 327 US-98, Eastpoint, (770) 639-3987
The Beach Pit– This restaurant offers Texas-style barbecue and fresh local seafood, which you can bring in for them to cook. But it also one of the few restaurants on the island serving breakfast. 49 West Pine Avenue, St. George Island, (850) 799-1020
Blue Parrot– Dine on grouper, shrimp, oysters, and more at this beachfront eatery with a large patio. They also have frozen drinks with a tropical flair. 68 East Gorrie Drive, St. George Island, (850) 927-2987
Cafe Con Leche- Apalachicola’s best breakfast restaurant is this cozy cafe with Latin flavors. Try the breakfast burrito or Cuban sandwich with Cuban-style coffee. 234 Water Street, Apalachicola, (850) 653-2233
The Franklin and Parlor Bar– Located in the Gibson Inn, this whimsical restaurant combines Japanese, French, and Southern cuisines for dinner and weekend brunch. 51 Avenue C, Apalachicola, (850) 270-2150
Indian Pass Raw Bar– While not technically in this area, Indian Pass is worth the short drive. The Old Florida raw bar has oysters, shrimp, and pour-your-own beer. 8391 Highway C-30A, Port St. Joe, (850) 227-1670
Paddy’s Raw Bar– Calling itself “a sunny place for shady people,” this casual eatery has live music and great seafood. 240 3rd Street East, St. George Island, (850) 927-2299
Owl Cafe– The cozy wine bar and restaurant is one of the fine dining options in town. It has dishes like fried seafood, pasta, and salads. 15 Avenue D, Apalachicola, (850) 653-9888
Tamara’s Cafe– Set in a 1920s building, this restaurant is among the most praised in Apalachicola. Diners enjoy dishes like paella and pecan-crusted grouper. 71 Market Street, Apalachicola, (850) 653-4111
Up the Creek Raw Bar– Located on the northern end of town, this unassuming restaurant has the best seafood around. Dine on fried shrimp and raw oysters with a local beer, overlooking the river. 313 Water Street, Apalachicola, (850) 653-2525
Where to Stay in Apalachicola
Coombs Inn & Suites– Spread across three Victorian homes, this bed and breakfast has 23 rooms with free WiFi, private verandas, and bike rentals. 80 6th Street, Apalachicola
The Consulate– Set above a row of shops, the four luxurious suites have private balconies, exposed brick, and stylish furnishings. 76 Water Street, Apalachicola
Gibson Inn– Built in 1907, this historic inn has been completely renovated with modern decor. Guests can enjoy the wrap-around porches, chauffeur services, and a popular bar and restaurant. 51 Avenue C, Apalachicola
Water Street Hotel & Marina– The 30-room hotel has marina access and views of the river. All are suites with full kitchens, private verandas, and original artwork. 329 Water Street, Apalachicola
Rentals- There are a handful of Airbnb rentals in this area, including the historic apartment in downtown Apalachicola I stayed at, a vintage Airstream in Carabelle, and a tiny house in Eastpoint. Houseboats at Riverwatch rents colorful houseboats in Apalachicola.
Beach Rentals- If you’re staying on St. George Island, there are many companies that operate rentals of beach condos and houses. Resort Vacation Properties is the one I used.
Campgrounds- There are a number of places to camp in this area. Apalachicola National Forest has cabins and campsites. Carabelle Beach RV Resort has sites with all the bells and whistles along with waterfront cabins. There are also primitive sites at St. George Island State Park.
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