Manager's Message

Paul Rice Park Manager

Paul Rice, Park Manager

Dagny Johnson Key Largo Hammock Botanical State Park is a tropical forest winter wonderland!

Winter is the perfect season to enjoy what this park has to offer. The tropical hardwood forest is a perfect place to “get away from it all” during the busy winter months in the Keys. A favorite of locals and tourists alike, here you can find some quiet in nature.

Enjoy the self-guided nature walk or bike ride along the trail and explore an additional one to two miles by taking the loop portion of the trail. You’re likely to see some of the 84 protected species of plants and animals. On most Saturdays in this season, you can take a guided nature walk at 9 a.m. Meet at the entrance archway to learn about the wonders of nature in this tropical hardwood forest.

At the “circle,” there’s a native plant butterfly garden and a picnic table (please pack out your trash). Some parts of this trail are subject to tidal salt water flow and may require waterproof boots. For your protection, and that of the hammock, visitors must stay on the designated trails.

While mosquitoes typically disappear in the cooler, dry winter months, changing patterns may mean some could still be present. Visitors need only be prepared should repellant be necessary.

If you’re up for even more adventure, try the backcountry trails in the northern section, seven miles from the main entrance of the park, but first stop by the John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park's ranger station to get a Backcountry Permit. These are easily obtained with your Driver’s License or legal photo ID.

Whether you have an hour or all day, I think you’ll enjoy this unique Key Largo experience of the Real Florida.