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Washington Oaks Gardens State Park

 About Washington Oaks Gardens State Park

Gazebo surrounded by blooming flowers. Photo by Danielle Floyd.


Renee Paolini

Tis the season for the cool winter weather and breezy blue skies, the perfect background to take in the graceful Gardens, the charming 75 year old Visitor Center, as well as the Atlantic ocean’s waves breaking on the coquina rock outcroppings. The cooler air also determines the success of the park’s orange grove. This year we are expecting a delicious variety of citrus that the Rangers bag and sell when the fruit ripens. You can thoroughly enjoy the brisk change of year with a hike on old A1A. Take the Mala Compra trail into Florida’s natural habitats, breaking off from a dense canopied coastal scrub into a coastal maritime hammock and down into the estuarine tidal marsh along the Matanzas River. Peacefully gaze into the reflecting ponds that wind along the footpaths in the gardens and along the way you’ll hopefully catch a glimpse of seasonal birds found this time of the year, like the Yellow-rumped Warbler or the Grey Catbird. If you find yourself on the seawall, keep a lookout to the west for the Eagles that have returned as they soar the skies and occasionally snare a fish from the Intracoastal Waterway.

Winter is also a wonderful blooming season in the Gardens for the Roses, Camellias, and eventually the Azaleas. You can stop and smell the roses until February, and our Camellias are sprouting their vibrant baby buds as you read this. Come back in February for the Azaleas as they color the gardens.

The second Saturday of each month, The Friends of Washington Oaks holds a plant sale from 10am-2pm where you can purchase perennials, succulents, and orchids, most being grown right here in the park by our wonderful volunteers. See the Ranger Programs Tab for more information.

The third Saturday of each month, The Friends of Washington Oaks features a Photo Challenge for photographers at every level of expertise. Bring your camera and get “snappy” at the designated photo spots to have your work of art displayed for a month at the Gift Shop and the Visitor Center Information Kiosk. See the Events Tab for more information.

Our wonderful park offers something for everyone. Bring the whole family out to enjoy some of the upcoming events and programs. To learn more, see the Events Tab.  Take a hike into Natural Florida, have a picnic at one of our shaded Pavilions, go back into time with a little piece of Florida’s history, bring a fishing pole and catch a keeper, plan your wedding in the gardens, become a volunteer, and enjoy the merriment of the seasons. We hope to see you soon!








The Great Florida Birding Trail Logo The Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail Logo


Washington Oaks Gardens State Park is located two miles south of Marineland, off A1A.