Suwannee River State Park in Florida is one of the first parks added to the Florida Park system. Nestled in a thick hardwood forest and surrounded by the Withlacoochee and Suwannee River, this 1,860 acre park offers a wealth of opportunities for the outdoor enthusiast. If you’re looking for a peaceful retreat to the wilderness, Suwannee River State Park has what you want.
This park is bathed in history from the Civil War. A short distance from the picnic area you will find a paddle-wheel from a 19th century steamboat and earthworks built during this time. The earthworks were used to guard against incursions by Navy gunboats attached to the Union. A journey up the river will also reveal many more of these earthworks built during the Civil War, lining the high banks.
The park offers 31 wooded, full facility campsites. Each site has electric, water, a fire ring, picnic table and grill. The campground has a bathroom with flushing toilets and hot showers. There are also five cabins that are available for rent. Each one sleeps six and comes with a dishwasher, fireplace and a huge screened porch. Pets are allowed in the campground but not inside the cabins. As in every park, please follow all the rules concerning pets in the park.
If boating is your hobby, Suwannee River State Park offers some great opportunities. There is a boat ramp located inside the park which accommodates various watercrafts such as, boats, canoes and kayaks. The upper portions of the Suwannee River Canoe Trail and the Withlacoochee River Canoe Trail end in the park. If you’re up for it, the Lower Suwannee River Canoe Trail begins here and ends in the Gulf of Mexico. This park is known to offer some of the very best opportunities for backcountry canoeing or kayaking in the state of Florida. Canoes can be rented at the park.
If the water in the river is low, various springs can be seen bubbling up into the tannin waters. Many local swimming areas located along the white sandy shores of the Suwannee are accessible by boat. The hiking trails located in the park range from ¼ mile to 18 miles. The Sandhills Trail will take you to the Columbus Cemetery which is one of the oldest ones in Florida. Columbus was a booming sawmill town during the 1800’s and the river was an important factor in the town’s wealth and survival.
The park also offers fishing, biking, wildlife viewing and has guided tours offered on the weekends. The beauty of the tall magnolias and other hardwoods lining the bluffs above the river make this park hard to beat. This is definitely one of the prettiest parks in the Florida park system. To learn more, visit the official website.
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