Big Lagoon State Park, officially located in Pensacola, is an attractive waterfront park featuring some good running options. With its setting on Big Lagoon and smaller lagoons inside the park, it’s a popular spot for kayaking and birding. Note: fee to use park and set opening hours.
For road running, the best option is the main park road (Bauer Rd.), starting off Gulf Beach Highway and continuing for 2.5 miles to the end on Big Lagoon. The scenery is a bit monotonous for the first half, but the second half opens up to some nice water views. There’s no sidewalk/shoulder, but it’s a lightly trafficked road. For a longer/add-on option, take the side road at the Big Lagoon Boat Lunch (restrooms) at the southwestern part of the park out to Perdido Key Dr., and join our River Rd. loop or connect to Johnson Beach Rd. (1 mile).
There are also 5 miles of hiking and nature trails in the park. They’re runnable, but the surface can be softer sand in parts. The three main trails are the Sand Pine Trail, Big Lagoon Main Trail 2, and Big Lagoon Beach Trail.
- Park Road: 2.5 miles one-way; Also 5 miles of trails
- Bauer Rd. of Gulf Beach Highway
- Parking area off Gulf Beach Highway at park entrance