Fort Pickens (far sunset)

Finding the perfect time to visit a historical place often feels like a scientific experiment! With the goal of trying to avoid those large crowds of tourists and find the perfect time to take photos, we’ve tested out various times of the day and have come up with a few conclusions. Mornings can be a great time, but you can still be surrounded by those early bird tourists, and you kind of need to be a morning person…which we are not. Afternoon is an awful time especially on the weekends because that’s when everyone and their family members seem to want to visit attractions. Think packed parking areas, crowds hovering around the coolest spots in the place, and an unnerving amount of selfies being taken all around you. Then there is the early evening time when people start leaving and everything starts to quiet down…really quiet down which we so happily experienced when visiting Fort Pickens in the Gulf Islands National Seashore area of Florida about an hour before they closed. So before we post more photos of our time at this unique military fort on the ocean, we want to share with you why we have a new found love with visiting historical places right before they close!

  1. You have a good chance of experiencing the place all to yourself. We’ve found that most people don’t stick around late at historical places. We are not exactly sure why…but either way, we love that the late hours allows for some solitude!

  2. Your exploration will feel more authentic. Less tourists at a historical place means you get to really imagine what it was like in the past. We love when our imagination gets to run wild!

  3. The limited amount of time to explore will create a more focused experience. Visiting a historical place right before they close does mean having less time to explore, but we have found that the limited time forces us to focus on the important parts of the experience rather than wander around aimlessly!

  4. The sunsets are beautiful. Early evening time at a historical location means a good chance of seeing a sunset…and who doesn’t love a piece of history with a gorgeous sunset in the background!

  5. There are more photo opportunities with little to no wait. Getting a great landscape shot of a historical place is often hard during peak visiting hours…but we found that when visiting near closing time, you get an ample amount of opportunities to take the perfect photo!