NPS Canaveral National Seashore
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  • 2. Turtlemound

    A walk up Turtle Mound is a walk back in time; know that you tread upon layers of life history belonging to the Timucua Indians. They built this mound over hundreds of years from the shells of oysters and clams that they harvested from the bounty of Mosquito Lagoon. As you ascend the mound you might wonder what it was used for. Was it a lookout to watch for approaching enemies? Or, was it a landmark to help them find their way back each year to their winter home. Or, was it a place for tribal ceremonies? No one really knows. We do know that the first Floridians built mounds of this type wherever they lived and that the mounds contain the remains of their lives and have many stories to tell. But as Turtle Mound is one of the last remaining intact mounds of its kind, the clues contained within help us to better understand the Timucuan's connection to the resource as we struggle to find our own. The last Timucuans passed away around 1750 or were taken to Cuba with the Spanish, taking the answers with them. But one thing we know for sure: what you will see from the top of the mound is a spectacular view of Canaveral National Seashore. Just remember, in summer, be sure you bring your insect repellant.