Encompassing more than 600 square miles in North Central Florida, Ocala National Forest is your playground for adventure.
The winter holidays are different in balmy Florida, but you might be surprised that you CAN hike into the woods and cut down a Christmas tree. In fact, it’s only $10 and you can also explore beautiful Ocala National Forest.
The clear waters flowing out of Alexander Springs are the start of a great paddling trail inside Ocala National Forest. It’s an easy stream to paddle with lots of wildlife, especially birds and fish.
Cool springs, scenic trails and things to do while exploring Ocala National Forest from 15 campgrounds.
Ocala National Forest covers more than 600 square miles of Central Florida, and all of it is open to dispersed, primitive camping.
Good news: One of Florida’s favorite kayak runs, Juniper Springs, is open again. It might be the most pristine spring-fed river in Florida. It’s stunningly beautiful, a narrow twisty stream, best for experienced paddlers. It had been closed since 2020.
You can experience four outstanding Florida rivers in one trip if you base yourself in the Ocala area. In four days of paddling, you have a good chance to see wildlife — from manatees to American eagles to alligators and even monkeys. Three of the four rivers are aquarium-clear spring-fed streams. The fourth is a wild and peaceful place where you can escape the modern world.
Some of the best hiking near Orlando can be found at the Little Big Econ State Forest, where bluffs along a scenic river add interest. The forest is 5,000 acres preserved in a suburban area in the middle of the triangle formed by Orlando, Cocoa and Daytona Beach.
This historic restaurant near Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park at Cross Creek is a great place to eat like a cracker. It offers an old Florida ambiance and menu.
There’s not much going on in Lake George State Forest, making it an ideal getaway for a few days of solitude along the St. John’s River.
A prime campground on the north rim of Ocala National Forest, Rodman Campground is a well-groomed state park adjacent to the bass-filled Rodman Reservoir and gateway to the Cross-Florida Greenway.
County park campgrounds are increasingly on our radar as campers get shut out of crowded state parks or face skyrocketing rates at private campgrounds.
If you love kayaking and are planning a getaway, we recommend these six places as the best towns for kayaking in Florida. These small towns will deliver exceptional and authentic experiences.
The mistake most people make when planning a Florida camping experience in popular public campgrounds is starting too late.
No mountains. Few curves. But Florida has plenty of scenery and a handful of roads that take you through unspoiled natural beauty and picturesque historic sites.
Floridians survive the heat and humidity of our brutal summers by turning to the state’s wealth of cool, clear, refreshing springs. But you need to get to the best Florida springs early, especially on weekends.