Behind Daggerwing Nature Center in busy South County Regional Park, a boardwalk leads you into habitats that have all but been erased from the surrounding crowd of suburbia in west Boca Raton.
The trails and observation tower showcase a remnant of ancient tropical forest with big strangler figs and Jamaican satinleaf shading a dense, ferny understory.
Resources for exploring the area
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Location: Boca Raton
Length: 0.6 mile loop
Trailhead: 26.379367, -80.225700
Address: 11435 Park Access Rd, Boca Raton
Restroom: at the nature center
Land Manager: Palm Beach County
Trail open sunrise to sunset daily. Nature center has more limited hours, please check their website in advance of your visit.
Pets are not allowed. Fully wheelchair and stroller accessible, except for the observation tower.
From US 441 in Boca Raton, take Glades Road west to Cain Blvd. Drive 0.3 mile north to Park Access Blvd; follow this road 1 mile to the nature center inside South County Regional Park, just past the water park.
The boardwalk starts off from the nature center and crosses a wetlands area into a dark tropical hammock thick with large pond apple trees, strangler fig, and myrsine.
A side spur trail leads to an observation tower that looks out over the canopy. The woods are a riot of green, with ferns carpeting the forest floor.
The tower stands high above the forest floor, so you have a great up-close view of the canopy.
This is an old forest, with enormous strangler fig and pond apple trees, Jamaican satinleaf, and giant leather ferns. The roots dangling from strangler figs make it look like a jungle!
More worth exploring while you’re in this area.
Hillsboro Pineland Natural Area
A 44 acre remnant of forest that once spanned between the Atlantic Coastal Ridge and the Everglades, Hillsboro Pineland Natural Area offers gentle nature trails less than a mile long
Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge
At the edge of Boynton Beach, where historic farmlands have given way to subdivisions, Arthur R. Marshall Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge is a 145,000 acre buffer between suburbia and the Everglades
Helene Klein Pineland Preserve
In just 13 acres, Helene Klein Pineland Preserve packs in a nice walk through a variety of habitats within an urban forest along busy Hillsboro Blvd
Doris Davis Foreman Wilderness
A pretty patch of tropical hammock hides amid the bustle of suburbia in Parkland in Broward County on the half-mile loop through Doris Davis Foreman Wilderness Preserve