Activities

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Maclay Gardens - Accessible Amenities

Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park is committed to providing a variety of accessible amenities to all of its visitors.

Those amenities include:

 

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Maclay Gardens - Bicycling

The Lake Overstreet portion of the park offers approximately five miles of multi-use trails that can be used for hiking, biking, or horseback riding. These trails afford views of Lake Overstreet and a ravine system that rivals those of North Georgia. In addition, approximately three miles of designated bike trails provide scenic biking on the Overstreet property. Lake Overstreet is for use by wildlife only, and for scenic viewing by people. The park offers a limited number of bicycles for rent. Check for availability at the Ranger Station as you enter the park.  Helmets are highly recommended for all cyclists and Florida law requires helmets for cyclists age 16 and under.

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Maclay Gardens - Boat Ramp

A boat ramp is available at Lake Hall. Gasoline motors cannot be used from the park boat ramp.

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Maclay Gardens - Canoeing and Kayaking

Lake Hall is excellent for kayaking, paddle boating, using small sailboats and canoeing for those with experience. Only boats without motors or with electric motors are allowed. Visitors are reminded that most of the lake's shoreline is private property. Please respect the property of others. The park offers a limited number of kayaks for rent. Check for availability at the Ranger Station as you enter the park.

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Maclay Gardens - Fishing

Largemouth bass, bream and bluegill are caught in Lake Hall. A Florida freshwater fishing license is required. Fishing is not allowed in Lake Overstreet.

All fishing within the park must conform to regulations concerning size, number, method of capture and season.  A fishing license may be required.  More information is available at the Florida Wildlife Commission’s Fishing in Florida.

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Maclay Gardens - Gardens

First planted in 1923, the gardens at Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park are a floral masterpiece. Hundreds of camellias and azaleas mix with dogwoods, magnolias and a variety of other trees for a spectacular array of blooms from December through April. The gardens feature a picturesque brick walkway, a secret garden, a reflection pool and a walled garden. The visitor center has two videos relating to the history of the Maclay family and of the park for your watching pleasure. An audio tour is also available upon request at the Ranger Station.  The visitor center has a manual wheelchair and a motorized chair for traveling into the garden paths, please request use of the wheelchair and motorized chair at the Ranger Station.  A golf cart tour is also available with advance notice.

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Maclay Gardens - Geo-Seeking

Geocaching is an outdoor game using hand-held global positioning systems (GPS) devices. It's effectively an inexpensive, interactive, high-tech treasure hunt that's a great way to learn geography. Participants use location coordinates to find caches. Some caches are easy to find; others are more difficult. The biggest reward is the thrill of the search and the discovery of a place where you have never been. Geocaching should have minimal impact to the environment and conscientious land use ethics should be followed.

The Operation Recreation GeoTour hosted by Geocaching.com, stretches from Pensacola to Key West and includes 71 of the First Three Time National Gold Medal Award Winning Florida State Parks and Trails. Visit 20 caches and win the Official Operation Recreation Geocoin. Download and print the Official Tracking Sheet to begin your adventure. Remember to cache and save with unlimited entry for a year with the Florida State Parks Annual Pass.

The Florida Park Service is proud to announce it has launched the Operation Recreation Kids GeoTour. Look inside Operation Recreation GeoTour geocaches for one of six possible Nature Cards. Every cache has one of six species. Record the name of the Florida State Park where you first find each of the six species on the Kids Official Tracking Sheet. Find all six species and win the ORGT Kids GeoTour Geocoin!

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Maclay Gardens - Hiking Nature Trail

The Big Pine and Boy Scout nature trails meander through the wooded hillsides overlooking Lake Hall. Novice hikers could expect to walk the distance of either trail in less than one hour. Multi-use trails on the Lake Overstreet portion of the park provide over 5 miles of trails for hiking or jogging.

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Maclay Gardens - Horse Equestrian Trail

The Lake Overstreet portion of the park offers approximately five miles of multi-use trails that can be used for hiking, biking, or horseback riding. These trails afford views of Lake Overstreet and a ravine system that rivals those of North Georgia. Lake Overstreet is for use by wildlife only, and for scenic viewing by people.

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Maclay Gardens - Interpretive Exhibit

Interpretive exhibits are available at Maclay House.

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Maclay Gardens - Meetings and Retreats

The historic Gardener's Cottage is available for meetings or receptions. Contact the park staff for availability and prices.

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Maclay Gardens - Picnic Pavilion

The picnic area overlooking Lake Hall offers one large pavilion and several small pavilions on a first come-first served basis.  The large picnic pavilion is available for rental. Consumption of alcohol beverages is prohibited. The large picnic pavilion has an accessible sidewalk that can be used from the un-loading zone to the pavilion with ease.

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Maclay Gardens - Picnicking

The picnic area overlooking Lake Hall is the most picturesque in north Florida with a large picnic pavilion available for rental. Consumption of alcohol beverages is prohibited.

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Maclay Gardens - Playground

There is a playground at the Lake Hall Recreation area within the park, which has state of the art equipment as well as benches to sit on.

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Maclay Gardens - Swimming

Maclay Gardens State Park has a designated swimming area located at Lake Hall. This freshwater lake has a sandy beach that offers park guests a cool dip to escape the Florida heat. The park’s recreation area also has a rinsing shower, pavilions, picnic tables and restroom with changing rooms

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Maclay Gardens - Tours

Self-guided garden tours are aided by a Gardens Walking Tour brochure, available at the Ranger Station. Guided group tours are available upon request, with a three weeks notice to allow for scheduling. During the peak blooming period, guided tours are offered on Saturdays and Sundays, depending upon availability of staffing and volunteers

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Maclay Gardens - Weddings

Many brides and grooms get married in the beautiful gardens at Alfred B. Maclay Gardens State Park. For information about weddings in the Gardens, please call Maclay Events, LLC at (850) 766-9592 or email maclayevents@gmail.com.

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Maclay Gardens - Wildlife Viewing

Maclay Gardens is home to a variety of Florida wildlife, including white tail deer, bobcat, and alligators. Various species of fish and reptiles inhabit Lake Hall and Lake Overstreet, and birds of all shapes and sizes can be found throughout the entire year.