Gulf Islands National Seashore (Florida) | BATTERY 233

Satellite view of Battery 233 ruins

Satellite view of Battery 233 ruins (click to enlarge)

See the Military Forts and Batteries web page for an interactive location map.

Battery 233 is located on the very eastern end of Perdido Key at Gulf Islands National Seashore and is not accessible by vehicle. To reach it, if you are on Perdido Key, you must either kayak from the Johnson Beach Boat Ramp on Big Lagoon to the end of the island (about 14 miles round trip); hike 11 miles, round-trip, from the end of the Perdido Key park road; or have your own boat. You could also paddle across the channel from Fort Pickens to Perdido Key. At only two miles, that’s actually the quickest way to get there if you don’t have a motorboat.

I did not visit Battery 233 and therefore cannot say what is there, but National Park Service literature describes it as the “ruins of Battery 233.” I saw a YouTube video of some guys who were actually walking around inside, so there is definitely something worth checking out if you can make it to the site.

The location originally held Batteries Slemmer and Center (built between 1898-99). Battery 233 was built on the foundation of these batteries, and it is a duplicate of Battery 234 at Fort Pickens. Both 233 and 234 were constructed during World War II, making them the newest military installations in the park.

An 1830s era fort, Fort McRee, also stood at the end of Perdido Key, but it has long since fallen into the ocean. Divers and snorkelers can see the remains of bricks and other rubble on the ocean floor not far off the coast. Most people mistake Battery 233 for McRee. If you do an Internet search, every modern image of “McRee” is actually Battery 233.

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Last updated on April 25, 2022
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