Surrounding one of Florida’s most picturesque first magnitude springs, Alexander Springs Recreation Area provides visitors with many options to enjoy the spring and the woodlands around the spring basin.
Anastasia State Park is windswept and sandy, with an arc of beach that stretches four miles to Matanzas Inlet, curving in on itself to face the ancient city of St. Augustine.
With an enticing strand named one of the best beaches in America, Bahia Honda State Park has long tempted travelers to slip out of their shoes and into the sand.
Blue Spring State Park is well acclaimed for being the best place in Florida to see manatees in the wild, and we don’t mean a dozen or two. Upwards of 200 crowd spring run each winter.
To spend a day or a weekend on your own deserted island? Heaven. This is one of the tougher and costlier state parks to get to, but well worth it. Solitude is guaranteed. Miles and miles of lonely Gulf of Mexico beaches are yours to roam.
It was meant to be a national park, the largest natural hammock of royal palms in the United States, set aside by developer Barron Collier during his push to create the Tamiami Trail across the Everglades. The Federal government wasn’t interested, so the state of Florida stepped in and created Collier-Seminole State Park, which opened in 1947.
Centered around a mysterious 6,700-acre swamp forest with open waters and shrunken bald cypresses, Dead Lakes Recreation Area provides paddlers, hikers, and campers with a place to play.
E.G. Simmons Park in Ruskin offers a campground along with its beaches and mazy mangrove-lined waterways for paddlers and anglers along Tampa Bay.
Geology is the focus of Falling Waters State Park, which sits atop a tall ridge. The cascade plunges more than 70 feet into a cylindrical sinkhole lined with ferns and mosses, and the observation platform is about a third of the way down.
From Faver-Dykes State Park, you can easily explore the estuaries of the Matanzas River. Shaded by oak hammocks along Pellicer Creek, this peaceful park offers camping, hiking and biking trails, and some of the best paddling along this coast.