How You Can Access Marco Island Public Beaches

The Marco Island beaches are extraordinary. Nestled away on the furthest reaches of Florida, sits this remarkable little island. With its pristine untouched beaches of white soft sand and many fun things to do, this is a prime destination for beach lovers of all kinds.

We cover the two top beaches on Marco Island, and how you can spend your entire trip bouncing between the two and still have a fulfilling and amazing time.

tigertail beach

Some beaches are public. Others are privately-owned. Some can be accessed by club members and others are difficult to find parking for.

Don’t let beach access be confusing, in the information below, we cover both what you can find and how you can access the two best beaches on the island.

South Beach

South Beach is the island’s premier beach getaway. It is big, easy to access, and right in the heart of the island. It also attracts the highest number of visitors. If you want a beach with high-quality amenities, well-maintained restroom facilities, nice parking, and more, South Beach is the answer.

south beach

South Beach is located on South Collier Blvd. The parking lot is rather large, but it may get filled during weekends or holidays. When the lot does fill, local staff may open up a new area to park. This is because parking on the streets in and around South Beach is not allowed.

With that said, parking is right by the beach, and it is easy to get to the sands from the lot. Parking is $8 per vehicle for the day, paid by the meter. You can pay with a Visa or Mastercard.

Tigertail Beach

We absolutely love the dazzling water escape of Tigertail Beach. It is a fantastic place to spend the day for its quiet isolation compared to South Beach and its epic views of the sand dunes and shell piles.

The overall layout of Tigertail is perhaps unexpected. Visitors can park at a large lot, with facilities, 226 total parking spots, a handicapped area, and even a concession stand. Parking is $8 for the day and is payable by a master meter.

sandpiper on the beach

This is where things get interesting. To gain access to Tigertail Beach proper, you cross a shallow tidal bay. Here you can watch birds such as herons, egrets, sandpipers, and other elegant species. It is also a popular place for feeding predatory birds, like osprey.

There is a boardwalk area for convenient access to the beachside. There are five boardwalks leading to the beach, so choose your pathway and get to it! Dense foliage separates the lot from the beach, so once you land on the sands, it seems like you are in a different world entirely.

tidal pool

Once on the beach, you can spread out across its span, heading up north along the shelly shoreline until you reach the famous Sand Dollar Island. Locally called the Sand Dollar Spit, this stunning area is mostly untapped natural wetlands, filled with collected shells from the gulf. While collecting live shells is prohibited by Collier County, you can find some dazzling natural creations.

Guests can enjoy a quaint playground area, clean restrooms for families, and an information kiosk with maps and attraction brochures available.

Tigertail Beach is growing into its very own authentic barrier island. The beachside is open from 8 a.m. to sunset daily, and it houses some of the finest beachside things to do on Marco Island.

South Beach and Tigertail Beach are the only fully-accessible and public beaches on the island. Some beach areas are exclusive to hotel guests or permit-required.

We have Marco Island vacation rentals near both of the beaches. Simply reach out to our team for specifics or pinpoint a few top rentals for you and your group. We want Marco Island to remain accessible and welcoming, whether you want a golfing vacation or a quiet beach escape, a rambunctious romp through the shops or a week-long stint at the day spa.

Plan Your Marco Island Vacation Now

Make a vacation to Marco Island your own, check out the availability of our Remax vacation rentals now!