St. George Island, Florida

Day 4:
The drive up US 19 was pretty. However, it was obvious that the entire coast from Tarpon Springs to St. George had been hit by the economy. There were abandoned beach houses and motels and seafood shacks as well as bait houses. It was ghost town after ghost town on our drive. The structures had definitely been hit by storms and never rebuilt or repaired. It seemed between the storms and the devastating rumors of the 2010 oil spill in the gulf, this area of the gulf had a one-two punch. Not only did they never recover, they were down for the count. So sad. Nothing was even open to give my business to.

On a lighter note, we drove through hundreds of butterflies that day. For hours we could see them flying everywhere all along the coast. Red and yellow butterflies. We stopped and got out to look at them for a minute. I absolutely love butterflies.

Our goal was to make it to St George Island before sunset to camp on the beach. We made it to the island but not in time to make it into the park to camp. We spent the next morning wandering around the island, exploring the lighthouse, before getting on the road to Panama Beach. It was a great day for a drive along the coast. Below are some pictures from our visit to St. George Island.
Shoreline at St. George.
Our view when we woke up in the morning. 

Historic Lighthouse we toured that morning.
Brian on the last staircase to the tippy top.
Navigating our way to Panama City Beach.

Great photo shot by my husband when we stopped to get out to watch the sunset and butterflies migrating.
Just one of the hundreds of butterflies that were in the air that afternoon.

Testing the waters. We considered camping here.