John D. MacArthur Beach State Park is so named for John D. MacArthur who donated the land in the 1970s. The park first opened to the public in 1989 and it covers 225 acres on land, with an additional 535 acres of submerged lands. It includes a lake that is crossed by a 1,600-foot boardwalk and Munyon Island which was named after Dr. James Munyon. The Hygeia Hotel was located on Munyon island at the turn of the Twentieth century. There are many hiking trails and pavilions on Munyon island. However this island is accessible by kayak or boat.
MacArthur Beach is world famous as a nesting ground for sea turtles, including the endangered loggerhead, green sea turtle and leather backs. Endangered bird species such as the wood stork, least tern and peregrine falcon visit this park. Get more involved and join Friends of MacArthur Beach State Park. Make sure not to miss the The William T. Kirby Nature Center which features exhibits about the park’s natural history.