There are active alerts for some Florida state parks & trails, click here to view

We invite you to visit any one of our amazing state parks, and to save your adventures with the new Deluxe Real Florida Passport. This travel-sized... Read more

Celebrate Parks and Recreation Month by experiencing any of the 100 miles of beaches found within Florida State Parks. Dip your toes into the... Read more

Florida's state parks have plenty of options for camping and cabin reservations throughout the state.  With tent and RV sites;... Read more

Aug 18 2018 - 10:00am to 11:00am EDT
Koreshan State Park
Aug 18 2018 - 4:30pm to 7:30pm CDT
Topsail Hill Preserve State Park

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Director's Message

Welcome to Florida State Parks.Florida State Park Director Eric Draper in front of the sky as a background

Some of the America’s best and most popular beaches environmental treasures are found in Florida state parks, including world-class beaches where people can enjoy the sun rising over the Atlantic and setting over the Gulf.  From the Panhandle to the Keys, more than 100 miles of sandy beaches allow millions of people to enjoy The Real Florida.

Our park rangers and other staff work hard to provide great beach experiences like swims and beach walks while protecting the natural resources that make Florida’s coastal parks so special.    Taking care of beach parks goes beyond opening the gates and keeping the facilities clean and looking nice. 

Over the years we have seen more and more litter wash up on beaches. Bits of plastic bottles, bags, straws, fishing line and every other plastic thing imaginable ends up on the shore. It is an ugly nuisance and hazard to habitat. This litter is unsightly and hazardous to wildlife and habitats. The Florida Department of Environmental Protection encourages residents and visitors to reduce their plastic use and “Skip the Straw.”

The enterprising staff and volunteers at John D. MacArthur Beach State Park and the Friends of MacArthur Beach are also taking on the beach debris challenge by turning it into a citizen science project.   

During a recent visit, I saw school age children and others learn about the impact of plastic debris and do something about it. Visitors picked up buckets at the nature center and scavenged the beach collecting plastic debris. The debris is weighed and inventoried back at the center.  The amazing participation and amount of trash collected is testament to visitors taking ownership of keeping their beach clean. Children are excited as it becomes a contest of sort of who can fill their bucket more. It makes learning fun.

This story illustrates something special about parks. People want to have a good time, but they also want to learn about and protect Florida’s natural and cultural treasures.  Memories are made by what we take in, share and do.

I encourage you to explore Florida’s beach parks and create your own experiences.  If beaches are not your thing, go take a swim in a spring or walk a trail in the woods. Share your stories and memories with us so we can continue to show the beauty of Florida State Parks.

Eric Draper, Director

Contact Us

Statewide Information Line (850) 245-2157
Florida Division of Recreation and Parks
3900 Commonwealth Boulevard
Tallahassee, FL 32399
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