With the discovery of some of the most ancient evidence of human habitation in the Americas in the Aucilla Sinks and Fort Center archaeological sites, it’s true that you can go deep into Florida history – and pre-history – while exploring the outdoors in Florida.
Many state parks and five of our national parks are devoted to telling Florida’s backstory through their conservation of places that mark important turning points in our history, or capture a moment in time of the ancient peoples who once roamed across this landscape.
From the original landing locations of Europeans looking to colonize the Americas to Civil War-era fortresses, plantation homes, and modern memorials to civil rights, you’ll find a breadth of historic context across the state of Florida when you visit these sites.
Featured Historic and Archaeological Destinations
Selected historic and archaeological destinations that you should plan to visit.
Articles about historic and archaeological sites in Florida. Scroll through to see all.
Ormond Memorial Gardens
Spilling across the Atlantic Coastal Ridge, Ormond Memorial Gardens leads you into a contemplative world mere steps from a major highway
Paddling the Bartram Trail in Welaka
Learning how botanists William and John Bartram traveled along the St. Johns River in the 1700s, I followed an experienced river guide for a look at part of the Bartram National Recreation Trail from the water on our Bartram Adventure Tour in Palatka.
At the Koreshan Unity in Estero, Florida, a group of believers gathered in 1894 to build their paradise. It is now a National Historic Site and a Florida State Park. Walk the trails and streets of “New Jerusalem” to learn its story.
Pancakes at the Old Spanish Sugar Mill
Making pancakes at the Old Spanish Sugar Mill in De Leon Springs has been a tradition since 1961. But did you know the mill’s history? Settle in and flip a flapjack after learning about its roots.
Exploring San Marcos de Apalache
Where the Wakulla and St Marks Rivers meet, explore San Marcos de Apalache Historic State Park, a small piece of ground with a deep history under five flags.
The Barefoot Mailman
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.
Osceola: Back in Time
On a day trip to Kissimmee, we were sidetracked by history at the 23th annual Osceola County Historical Society Pioneer Day, held, to our surprise, at Historic Babb Landing.
Indian Key: An unusual ghost town
John takes a trip back in time with Florida Keys historian Brad Bertelli to discover the layers of history found on Indian Key, once the county seat of Dade County
Cuban chugs in Key West
Sometimes we take history for granted. A walk through the Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden led to a collection of Cuban chugs, which we didn’t know what they were until we learned their story.
Historic Spanish Point
At Spanish Point, scents hang heavy in the morning air: a moonflower in the act of closing for the day, the sweetness of citrus blossoms, the purple morning-glory clambering over mangroves, the brush of salt breezes.
On a Mission
Tallahassee’s newest portal to the past is also its oldest, the reconstruction of history at Mission San Luis.
In search of Florida’s ancient past
Archaeological treasures unburied: in Glades County, learn about the unique archaeological finds near Lake Okeechobee, with interpretation at two different hiking trails.