Encompassing more than 5,700 acres, Barr Hammock Preserve near Gainesville includes an expansive wetland area, the Levy Prairie, an excellent birding destination.
Five Star Trails Gainesville and Ocala
Trails appearing in the book Five Star Trails Gainesville and Ocala, published by Menasha Ridge Press. Day hikes within an hour of Gainesville or Ocala, ranging from family-friendly strolls to rugged all-day hikes.
Looping around a cypress-lined pond in the midst of pine flatwoods northwest of Dunnellon, the Buck Island Pond Trail at Goethe State Forest has quite a few interesting features, including a pitcher plant bog.
At Carney Island, the breeze carries the scent of orange blossoms from some of the northernmost remaining commercial groves in Florida. Lake Weir is a palatable presence, even though the trails stick to the oak hammocks
Deep in the Ocala National Forest, the Davenport Landing Trail leads you on a scenic loop to a historic landing and archaeological site along the Ocklawaha River.
Switchbacks, scrambles, and a smattering of history – the Pruitt section of the Florida Trail along the Cross Florida Greenway is one of Central Florida’s more fascinating hiking destinations.
Ten acres isn’t a lot for a natural area, but at John Mahon Nature Park in Gainesville, it’s plenty for a quick, refreshing walk in the woods off Newberry Road.
Protecting 159 acres of lush forests along the confluence of Possum Creek and Hogtown Creek, Loblolly Woods Nature Park is a beauty spot in urban Gainesville.
The Moonshine Creek Trails immerse you in the botanical beauty and karst weirdness that are important facets of San Felasco Hammock Preserve State Park.
Circling restoration and natural areas on the campus of the University of Florida, the UF NATL Nature Trails provide an excellent orientation to Florida’s native trees, plants, and grasses.
With more than 4,200 acres in this FWC Wildlife Environmental Area, Watermelon Pond WEA offers both solitude and scenery along a vast system of prairie habitats.