Central Florida Attractions

Central Florida Attractions
Sunny central Florida offers endless opportunities for memorable outdoor experiences in a variety of natural playgrounds. You can learn about this area's rich history while soaking up plenty of sunshine as you stroll through lush botanical gardens or canoe down a river. Whenever you arrive in central Florida, memories of natural beauty, sunshine and sand will be sure to follow you home.

Blue Spring State Park

Blue Spring State Park is home of the largest spring on the St. John River and a designated manatee refuge. Abundant nature trails and water activities are available in this 2,600 acre park. You can view manatees, take a guided or unguided kayak trip, and enjoy a picnic under a sprawling shade tree. Learn about the park's history as home of the Timucuan Indians on the self-guided boardwalk. The park is open from 8 a.m. until sundown, 365 days a year. As of March 2010, admission is $6 per vehicle carrying two to eight people, $4 for a single-occupant vehicle, and $2 for pedestrians, bicyclists, extra passengers and holders of an Annual Individual Entrance Pass. Camping fee is $24 per night, plus tax, and includes water and electricity. Cabin fees are $95 plus tax, per night.

Blue Spring State Park
2100 West French Avenue
Orange City, FL


Ocala National Forest

This southern forest spans more than 383,000 acres in the world's largest contiguous sand pine scrub forest. There are a variety of recreational activities, including swimming in the crystal clear natural springs, hiking, bicycling, horseback riding, camping and birding, to name a few. There are four ranger district offices with varying hours each season. Contact the visitor center before planning your trip.

Lake George Ranger District
17147 East State Road 40
Silver Springs, FL 34488

Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales

Founded by American editor and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Edward William Bok, these gardens are a must-see for avid gardeners. Enjoy a variety of unique tropical flora in the meandering garden, designed by famed landscape artist Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. View butterflies and birds from inside the Window by the Pond nature observatory. Designated as a national historic landmark, Bok Tower Gardens also includes the Pine Ridge Nature Preserve, where visitors can take a 3/4-mile walking trail and learn about the sand hill ecosystem. Bok Towers is one of 28 gardens participating in the Center for Plant Conservation and has conserved 38 rare central and northern Florida plant species. The gardens are open daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., with last admission at 5 p.m. As of March 2010, general admission is $10 for adults, $3 for children aged 5 to 12, and free for kids under 5.

Bok Tower Gardens
1151 Tower Boulevard
Lake Wales, FL 33853


Article Written By Jeanne Fairchild

Jeanne Fairchild has been writing since 1996. She was part of Delta's SkyTeam Alliance implementation team, interned with Disney and is a Marketing Coordinator with MLT Vacations, a wholly owned subsidiary of Delta Air Lines. Fairchild holds an Associate of Applied Science in tourism and a Bachelor of Professional Studies in business from the SUNY Institute of Technology.

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