Exploring Southwest Florida
Along the southwest coast of the Florida peninsula, stretching south from Tampa Bay to Naples, coastal density means many smaller parks and local beaches along the Gulf of Mexico.
Public lands cluster around river basins, particularly the Myakka River and the Peace River, and along the western edge of the Big Cypress Swamp.
Look for some of the region’s largest public lands west of Interstate 75, where watersheds have been preserved and wetlands abound.
There is a surprising bounty of county natural areas that see light usage despite their hiking, biking, and paddling trails.
What does a hiker need to spend a week, or a month, or three months on the trail? Here are trail-tested suggestions for backpacking in Florida for trips of a week or more
As Florida black bears become active in late winter and spring, the chances of a bear encounter go up significantly if you leave food unsecured outdoors – whether in your campsite or at home.
Got kids? If any of them are in fourth grade, they can get a free pass to ALL Federal public lands good for the whole family through the end of August. Here’s how.
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.
Ponce de Leon, it seems, was a short fellow. In Punta Gorda, Florida, you’ll find pint-sized statues, murals, and even the Fountain of Youth to recollect his 1513 visit to Charlotte Harbor.
In spring, alligators become more active as the days warm up. It’s also mating season, so alligators are on the move. Expect to see them anywhere and everywhere along Florida’s trails.
Bear bagging is the art of hanging your food properly out of reach of bears. If you’re a Florida backpacker and haven’t learned how, here’s a short course. Securing your food from bears is required in the Ocala, Osceola, and Apalachicola National Forests.
With more than 1,400 miles of hiking statewide, the Florida Trail provides a gateway to grand landscapes for botanical beauty. Here are our top suggestions for fascinating botanical destinations along the Florida Trail.
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.
Although John is a native Floridian, our research trip to South Florida became an opportunity for him to see many natural “firsts” in Florida that most people have on their life lists.
Enjoy Florida’s botanical bounty with this handpicked selection of walks in the woods to see spectacular wildflowers, big trees, and unique habitats throughout the state of Florida.