Exploring Fort Lauderdale
Fort Lauderdale may not be somewhere you’ve thought of hiking, biking, or paddling, but you’ll be surprised what Broward County has to offer. Most of the hiking trails are short nature walks, but some immerse you in habitats you won’t easily see anywhere else in such an urban setting, including pond apple swamps and sawgrass prairies.
Fort Lauderdale is home to two state parks and a robust number of county parks with hiking trails. While the oceanfront is generally heavily populated, you can find quieter strands at Hugh Taylor Birch State Park and Mizell-Johnson State Park, as well as the at the Hillsborough Lighthouse Park.
Most of the surrounding communities – including Coral Springs, Dania, Davie, Deerfield Beach, Hollywood, Miramar, Plantation, Pompano Beach, Pembroke Pines, Sunrise, Tamarac – have at least one or more parks and natural areas off of major roads. Continue west on I-75 to US 27, and you’ll find the Everglades stretching off to the horizon, with Sawgrass Recreational Park one of several gateways into it.
When you live in a tightly packed space, you need somewhere green as your go-to place nearby. These are our top picks for parks in Florida’s urban areas, chosen for their diversity of outdoor activities and/or their unique green spaces.
Hiking barefoot in Florida isn’t new. Back in the 1880s, it was part of your job description if you delivered mail between Palm Beach and Miami. Learn more at the Hillsboro Lighthouse in Pompano Beach.