Attractions in Polk County, Florida

Attractions in Polk County, Florida
Polk County sits in close proximity to Orlando; and Old Florida style abounds in this largely rural setting, with activities that are closer to nature and speak to Florida's agricultural history and natural beauty. Polk County offers opportunities for hiking, boating and fishing in undisturbed natural surroundings at Lake Kissimmee State Park, Lake Wales Ridge State Forest and along the Winter Haven Chain of Lakes.

Bok Tower Gardens

Boasting 128 acres of gardens and a 205-foot Singing Tower of carillon bells, Bok Tower Gardens is home to the highest point in Florida, Iron Mountain, as well as the Pine Ridge Nature Preserve and Trail. Throughout the gardens visitors experience lush flower gardens and natural Florida landscapes including a bog garden, open glade and sandhill forest community, and an eco-system said to be one of the most endangered in the world.

Bok Tower Gardens
1151 Tower Boulevard
Lake Wales, FL 33853
(863) 676-1408
boktowergardens.org

American Water Ski Hall of Fame and Museum

A testament to the popularity of water skiing in Florida, this attraction promotes the sport through educational presentations and informing visitors about the past and present of water skiing. Polk County is home to more than 550 lakes, so water skiing is a popular activity in this area. The American Water Ski Educational Foundation operates the museum and hall of fame.

American Water Ski Hall of Fame and Museum
1251 Holy Cow Road
Polk City, FL 33868-8200
(863) 324-2472
waterskihalloffame.com

Lake Kissimmee State Park

Lake Kissimmee holds the title of third largest lake in Florida, and this state park offers nature enthusiasts a wealth of outdoor activities. With 13 miles of trails, the park has hours of hiking opportunities, and 6 miles of trails are available for equestrians. Eagles and ospreys nest in the area around the lake, offering rare sightings of Florida wildlife in its natural habitat. The park features a boat launch into Lake Kissimmee for fishing, and canoeing is popular on the park's lakes.

Lake Kissimmee State Park features a "cow camp," which gives visitors an idea of what cattle ranching was like back in the late 1800s. Campers enjoy campsites with full facilities or more rustic locations for primitive camping. The nights are especially dark inside the park and make for excellent star gazing for anyone spending the night.

Lake Kissimmee State Park
14248 Camp Mack Road
Lake Wales, FL 33853
(863) 696-1112
floridastateparks.org/lakekissimmee/default.cfm

Article Written By Lisa Jay

Lisa Jay began writing professionally in 2002. She has written for "Focus" magazine and "The Orlando Sentinel" as well as travel websites in the Central Florida area. She served as executive editor of "The Valencia Source." Jay earned an Associate of Arts in journalism from Valencia Community College. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in writing at Columbia University.

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