Trails

Big Lagoon State Park Trail
Aug 13, 2018

Whether by bicycle, horse, wheelchair, kayak or on your own two feet

Trails both within and outside our state parks can lead to a wide variety of adventure and opportunity throughout Florida.

Hiking, biking, equestrian, paddling and multi-use trails are a win-win for both trail users and the parks and communities they traverse. They benefit local economies and they improve the health and well-being of those who use them. Additionally, trails can provide eco-friendly transportation alternatives, especially near towns and urban areas.

Land trail opportunities vary from short nature strolls to long-distance journeys. Hikers following the 1,300-mile Florida National Scenic Trail, for example, travel through subtropical prairies, swamps, and pristine oak hammocks and pine forests. One can hike the trail for an hour or several months, with campsites available along the entire route. The trail represents more than five decades of trailblazing by volunteers and it traverses several state parks.

Our trails represent a tremendous collaboration between the state, local governments and volunteers who see the value of connections. Trails like the Withlacoochee State Trail and the Tallahassee-St. Marks Historical Railroad State Trail allow unparalleled access to outdoor recreation and cultural education. They become focal points for community events like the St. Marks Stone Crab Festival and charity bike rides.

As our multi-use state trails become part of long distance regional trail systems such as the Florida Coast-to-Coast Trail, the St. Johns River-to-Sea Loop and the Capital City to Sea Trails, journeys can span several days, inviting exploration of several connected state parks, communities and points-of-interest.

Florida’s trails include the water too. An extensive network of paddling trails brings outdoor enthusiasts to beautiful, hidden places. Paddlers can fish, view wildlife and glide on a variety of saltwater and freshwater trails. The 1,515-mile Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail stretching around the state’s entire coastline is a sea-kayaking paradise that connects hundreds of beautiful beaches, mangrove swamps and marshes. The trail also incorporates 47 coastal state parks.

The Florida Circumnavigational Trail is just one example of how Florida’s many unique environments and varied terrain make the state a perfect destination for trail users of all experience levels.

Trails connect cities, towns, parks and ultimately people. Throughout the state, Floridians and visitors can relax, travel and have fun on a huge variety of trails, while experiencing and immersing in the Real Florida, helping to establish a stronger base of support for conservation initiatives and values.