Activities

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Wheelchair accessible icon

Ravine Gardens - Accessible Amenities

Ravine Gardens State Park is committed to providing a variety of accessible amenities to all of its visitors.  These amenities include:

  • Accessible Civic Center with elevator access
  • 1.8 mile accessible paved trail
  • Accessible picnic pavilions and tables
  • Accessible playground and parking area
  • Accessible par-course fitness area
  • Large Print formats for Florida Park Service publications and other literature available upon request
  • Accessible restrooms
Amphitheater icon

Ravine Gardens - Amphitheater

In 1938, the local Jaycees transformed their Jaycees Day into the first official Azalea Festival. This same year the amphitheater was built to host the Miss. Florida Azalea Pageant, held during the festival. In the upcoming years, the festival grew and activities expanded throughout the town and Courthouse lawn. As its popularity grew, most of the activities were moved to the riverfront in downtown Palatka.  

The park’s amphitheater has a gazebo that is a scenic place to rest. In the spring, the grass “seating” area is left to bloom with beautiful wildflowers. The spot is a pleasant, shaded place to have a picnic or a small gathering.

Groups can reserve the small pavilion, with seating for 20 and a grill, from 8:00am to sunset for $75.00 per day, plus tax. This fee does not include entrance fees. A group entrance fee is available upon request. Parking is limited so we do not recommend groups larger than 25.

To check availability and to reserve this pavilion, please contact the office at (386) 329-3721.

Bicycling icon

Ravine Gardens - Bicycling

A 1.8-mile paved road winds around the ravine, offering motorists and bicyclists a view of the gardens. The Ravine Loop is closed to vehicle traffic one hour before sunset, but remains open for pedestrians, bicycles, and wheelchairs.  Helmets are highly recommended for all cyclists and Florida law requires helmets for cyclists age 16 and under.

Cyclist looking for longer distances should check out the Palatka to St. Augustine Trail, located just over the bridge in East Palatka. This 12-foot-wide trail runs through agricultural landscapes and scenic routs, and offers two sections, one approximately 10 miles in length and the other approximately 8 miles long.

Family reunions icon

Ravine Gardens - Family Reunions

The park has a large picnic pavilion available for rental that would be ideal for family reunions and gatherings. Our pavilion has four grills, is wheelchair-friendly and has several accessible picnic tables available. The large pavilion seats up to 100 guests at picnic tables and is available for $100 plus tax per day. Park entrance fees are not included in the price of the pavilion rental. A group entrance fee is available upon request. Rental includes use of the pavilion from 8:00am to sunset.

The Roy. E. Campbell Civic Center has several options for family reunions, baby showers and other gatherings.

  • Auditorium - includes stage, serving area, tables and chairs, can be combined with the Ravine Room, Room Capacity: 160
  • Ravine Room – includes tables and chairs, deck and picnic tables, can be combined with the Auditorium, Room Capacity: 80
  • Downstairs Meeting Room - includes a small kitchen, tables and chairs, Room Capacity: 60

Rentals in the Roy E. Campbell Civic Center are available from 8:00am to 11:00pm daily. All rooms have a 3-hour minimum rental. Rentals include staff setting up and breaking down the tables and chairs included in the rental.  

When combined with at least one room rental, a full service commercial kitchen is available for an additional fee. Caterers must have the proper documentation and be approved by park staff two weeks prior to the event. Please let the park staff know during the quote process if you are requesting the use of the kitchen.   

Rental rates range from $15.00 per hour to $80.00 per hour. Events after 4:00pm are required to add an hourly event staffing fee to their rental. Indoor room rentals do not include entrance fees for the park. If your party will be using the park for recreational purposes, please advise our staff when requesting your quote.

Please contact (386) 329-3721 Tuesday – Friday from 8:00am to 4:30pm or email ravinegardensreservation@dep.state.fl.us for more information or to request a quote.  

Gardens icon

Ravine Gardens - Gardens

This 146-acre park is a combination of formal and natural gardens. Natural vegetation ranges from mosses and ferns to woody shrubs and hardwood forest. Look for live oaks, hickory, sweet gum, longleaf pines, cabbage palm and cypress. About five acres are formal gardens, with stone terraces and water features.

The garden's peak flowering period is azalea season, late January to March. The hundreds of remaining azaleas have a "rolling bloom" and top out with about 50 - 60% of the plants blooming simultaneously. Visitors will also see Chickasaw plums, redbuds and dogwoods during this season.

Geoseeking icon

Ravine 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!


The Florida State Parks Civilian Conservation Corps Geotrail is now at Geocaching.com. Nine parks were built by the CCC and Works Progress Administration in the 1930s. Search for all nine caches and end at the CCC Museum at Highlands Hammock State Park to receive a commemorative geocoin.

GC codes:

GC38Y93 Fort Clinch State Park
GC3BG4G Florida Caverns State Park 
GC3D02X Highlands Hammock State Park
GC3BG4A Hillsborough River State Park
GC3ABB5 Mike Roess Gold Head Branch State Park
GC3BG4N Myakka River State Park
GC3ABBC O’Leno State Park
GC38Y8V Ravine Gardens State Park
GC3BG4E Torreya State Park
GC38Y9F Florida State Parks FINAL CCC Cache – located in Highlands Hammock State Park.

Hiking and nature trail icon

Ravine Gardens - Hiking Nature Trail

The park has two hiking trails with varying levels of difficulty.  

Main Park Drive: The main park drive is a 1.8-mile paved loop that winds around the ravine and along the spring-fed stream. The drive has several overlooks that offer views down into the ravine system. Visitors can relax on a bench in the shade to admire the beautiful flowers and soak up the serenity. The drive is considered Easy, although there is a steep hill that hikers face towards the end of the loop that can be considered slightly challenging. Please watch for vehicles on this trail.

Azalea Trail: The Azalea Trail is 2.5 miles long and is Strenuous due to the steep, narrow paths, and the need to scramble over roots and historic stone steps. This beautiful and challenging hike winds up and down the ravine, over both suspension bridges and offers views of the Azaleas (January – March) that can’t be beat. There are several challenging spots along the trail and hikers are asked to take caution, as there are extensive root systems exposed along the trail, which are needed to help slow the erosion.

Trail maps can be found in the Civic Center.

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Ravine Gardens - Interpretive Exhibit

Interpretive exhibits on park history are on display in the Civic Center and along the Park Drive.

Meetings and retreats icon

Ravine Gardens - Meetings and Retreats

The Roy. E. Campbell Civic Center has several options for meeting and retreat rentals.

  • Auditorium - includes stage, serving area, tables and chairs, can be combined with the Ravine Room, Room Capacity: 160
  • Ravine Room – includes tables and chairs, deck and picnic tables, can be combined with the Auditorium, Room Capacity: 80
  • Downstairs Meeting Room - includes a small kitchen, tables and chairs, Room Capacity: 60
  • Boardroom – includes a boardroom table and chairs, Room Capacity: 14

Rentals in the Roy E. Campbell Civic Center are available from 8:00am to 11:00pm daily. All rooms have a 3-hour minimum rental. Rentals include staff setting up and breaking down the tables and chairs included in the rental.  

When combined with at least one room rental, a full service commercial kitchen is available for an additional fee. Caterers must have the proper documentation and be approved by park staff two weeks prior to the event. Please let the park staff know during the quote process if you are requesting the use of the kitchen.   

Rental rates range from $15.00 per hour to $80.00 per hour. Events after 4:00pm are required to add an hourly event staffing fee to their rental. Indoor room rentals do not include entrance fees for the park. If your party will be using the park for recreational purposes, please advise our staff when requesting your quote. Additional equipment is available to rent for a nominal charge. Please see the Equipment Fee Schedule for details.

Please contact (386) 329-3721 Tuesday – Friday from 8:00am to 4:30pm or email ravinegardensreservation@dep.state.fl.us for more information or to request a quote.  

Pets icon

Ravine Gardens - Pets

Pets are allowed in Ravine Gardens State Park and on the multi-use trail system. They must be kept on a six-foot, hand held leash and well behaved at all times. Pets may not be left unattended at any time. Please pick up after your pet. Potty bags are provided at two locations in the park.

Picnic pavilions icon

Ravine Gardens - Picnic Pavilion

The park has two picnic pavilions available for rental. Our pavilions are wheelchair-friendly, with several accessible picnic tables available.

  • Large Pavilion – located next to the Civic Center, seats up to 100 guests at picnic tables. Grills available. $100.00 plus tax per day.
  • Small Pavilion – located next to the Amphitheater, seats up to 20 guests at picnic tables. Grill available. $75.00 plus tax per day. Limited parking next to the pavilion.

Park entrance fees are not included in the price of the pavilion rental. A group entrance fee is available upon request. Rental includes use of the pavilion from 8:00am to sunset.

Please contact the park office at (386) 329-3721, Tuesday – Friday, 8:00am – 4:30pm for more information or to make a reservation.

Picnicking icon

Ravine Gardens - Picnicking

There are numerous sites to picnic along the 1.8-mile paved ravine perimeter road.  Accessible picnic tables and grills are available at no additional charge. Stairways and trail access into the ravines are located near each picnic area.  Consumption of alcoholic beverages is prohibited except in the Civic Center, where alcohol is allowed during park-sanctioned events, within designated areas only.  

Playground icon

Ravine Gardens - Playground

Our wheelchair-friendly playground is located along the drive that circles the ravines and has accessible parking. It is past the amphitheater and the bathrooms on the drive, approximately one mile from the start of the drive. Included are swings, a slide and climbing equipment, nestled in the shade provided by the trees around the ravines.

Recycling icon

Ravine Gardens - Recycling

We have recycling containers in all common use areas for aluminum and plastic. The recycling is separated and taken off the park by Keep Putnam Beautiful volunteers, and the proceeds of collecting the recycled items go to Keep Putnam Beautiful and the Friends of Ravine Gardens; local non-profit groups.

Restroom facilities icon

Ravine Gardens - Restroom Facilities

Ravine Gardens has accessible public restroom facilities on both floors of the Roy E. Campbell Civic Center and an elevator for easy access to the second floor. Additionally, our 1.8-mile paved drive leads to restroom facilities approximately half a mile from the start of the drive, which can easily be accessed by hikers, walkers and visitors of the nearby playground facility and small picnic pavilion.

Tours icon

Ravine Gardens - Tours

Guided Hikes

Ranger led guided hikes of varying lengths are available for groups of 10 – 30 individuals for $2.00 per person. Tours must be requested a minimum of three weeks in advance.  Fees must be paid in advance and are only refundable if the reservation is cancelled one week prior to the scheduled date. A onetime date change can be made 48 hours prior to the scheduled date at no additional cost. Tours do not include park entrance fees. A group fee is available upon request.

For those with mobility limitations, a ranger talk is available in place of the hike. Due to damage caused by Hurricane Irma, we are not able to offer wagon tours at this time.

School and Scout Programs

School and scout programs are available upon request for no additional fee. Requests must be made at least three weeks in advance.

For more information, please contact the Park Services Specialist at (386) 329-3721.

Wedding icon

Ravine Gardens - Weddings

Ravine Gardens State Park has opportunities for both indoor and outdoor weddings. Couples may choose to hold their ceremony outdoors in our Court of States or on the terraces of our formal gardens. Outdoor wedding fees are based on the number of guests and range from $100 to $600 for a three-hour time period. Our outdoor facilities, such as our large pavilion and gazebo are also available for rent and are a wonderful setting for those looking for a rustic outdoor setting.

If you would prefer an indoor wedding or if you are looking for a spot to hold your reception, the Roy. E. Campbell Civic Center has several options available.

  • Auditorium - includes stage, serving area, tables and chairs, can be combined with the Ravine Room, Room Capacity: 160
  • Ravine Room – includes tables and chairs, deck and picnic tables, can be combined with the Auditorium, Room Capacity: 80
  • Downstairs Meeting Room - includes a small kitchen, tables and chairs, Room Capacity: 60

Rentals in the Roy E. Campbell Civic Center are available from 8:00am to 11:00pm daily. All rooms have a 3-hour minimum rental. Rentals include staff setting up and breaking down the tables and chairs included in the rental.

When combined with at least one room rental, a full service commercial kitchen is available for an additional fee. Caterers must have the proper documentation and be approved by park staff two weeks prior to the event. Please let the park staff know during the quote process if you are requesting the use of the kitchen.

Rental rates range from $15.00 per hour to $80.00 per hour. Events after 4:00pm are required to add an hourly event staffing fee to their rental. Indoor room rentals do not include entrance fees for the park. If your party will be using the park for recreational purposes, please advise our staff when requesting your quote.

Please contact (386) 329-3721 Tuesday – Friday from 8:00am to 4:30pm or email ravinegardensreservation@dep.state.fl.us for more information or to request a quote.

Wildlife viewing icon

Ravine Gardens - Wildlife Viewing

Visitors may see many types of wildlife throughout the park and a good place for viewing is right along the main park drive or on the nature trails. Early morning and right before sunset are typically the best times for viewing. Birds of all types, squirrels, opossum, skunks, fox, otters, fish, alligators, and turtles are seen throughout the park.