Salt Springs Recreation Area
Salt Springs Recreation Area is one the recreational jewels of the Ocala National Forest, with a spectacular natural mineral spring that gives the area its name. Plenty of outdoor activities keep campers and day-use visitors busy, including swimming in the springs, fishing, snorkeling, hiking and boating. Salt Springs is located between the St. Johns and Ocklawaha Rivers, 35 miles east of Ocala, Florida.The national forest spans four counties and 383,000 acres. It is the southernmost and oldest national forest east of the Mississippi River, and protects the world’s largest, contiguous sand pine scrub forest.
Salt Springs is the largest campground in the Ocala National Forest and the only one with full hookups for RVs. The facility offers spacious campsites for RVs and trailers, as well as a designated tent-only area, which is a short walk from the parking area. Sites are nicely shaded and well away from the busy day-use area.The recreation area and campground are located in the community of Salt Springs, which has a gas station, grocery store, several restaurants, bait and tackle shops, a post office, laundromat and visitor center.
Here’s A Guide To Area Springs And What Amenities Are Offered
If you can’t take the heat, get out of town and head to the springs.
Summer is here, and the sun is beaming down on the city, but just a short drive away is a cool-water refuge. There is no better way to refresh than by taking a dip in one of the nearby natural springs with its year-round temperature of 72 to 73 degrees.
And when you’re done lounging in the turquoise-tinted, crystal-clear water, the fun in the sun continues with the parks’ various activities, such as volleyball and picnicking.
Below is a guide to everything you’ll need to know about the area’s springs and what amenities are offered. A few of the privately owned springs offer camping, but prices vary, so see the websites provided for more information and rates.
In Ocala National Forest
49525 County Road 445, Altoona
Located in the Ocala National Forest, Alexander Springs is one of 27 first-magnitude springs in Florida. Its sloped spring pool makes it almost like a natural water park and a favorite for families, while the surrounding cabbage palm trees give it a tropical feel.
Nearly 42,000 people visited Alexander Springs last year, with some 27,700 of those attending May through August, according to the USDA Forest Service. The weekends are very busy, so you may want to try a weekday if you can.
Alexander Springs is in northern Lake County. From Ocala, head east on State Road 40. Once in Astor, look for signs.
Amenities: Swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, picnicking
In Ocala National Forest
Are There Alligators In The Springs In The Ocala National Forest
Most big springs flow out into a river or lake. Alligators are commonly found in most Florida rivers and lakes. So it is possible that an alligator could make its way into a spring. However, it is pretty unlikely that they would come up into a cold, crowded swimming area. For the most part, alligators want nothing to do with you and if you leave them alone, they will not bother you. The idea of alligators should not stop you from enjoying Floridas beautiful natural springs!
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Florida Springs Camping: Otter Springs
When you drive nearly two and a half hours from Orlando, you will find this amazing campground near Otter Springs natural beauty. This spring exists around 636 acres flows into the Suwannee River. The specialty of camping near this spring is that it is free of heavy crowds. You can feel a natural beauty silently by sitting on the camp couch or doing water activities in the spring.
Theres a short walk to the Otter spring from the campground. And then you can do swim, fish and many water activities. Even there are some small mountains around which you can get hiking experiences as well.
Even you can plan for an RV camping in the campground. If you are looking for more amenities, theres an enclosed pool with air-conditioned cabins which you can rent.
Ichetucknee Springs State Park Fort White
Doing adventure things with your kids will improve their practical knowledge as well as their thinking capacity. So, I suggest you take your kids along with you to Ichetucknee Springs State Park in Fort White. Try to visit there early in the mornings of weekdays in the summertime to avoid the crowd.
And have fun with your family by swimming, snorkeling, and canoeing in the superb clear water. You can also hike while seeing to see the wildlife like great blue herons, white tailored deer, and many more unique creatures.
Springs In The Ocala National Forest
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The Ocala National Forest is just north of Orlando and is a perfect destination for nature lovers. The forest is great for hiking, camping and wildlife viewing, but there are also four crystal-clear natural springs in the Ocala National Forest. They are Juniper Springs, Salt Springs, Silver Glen Springs, and Alexander Springs. Each spring is within a recreation area where there are plenty of activities to do. The springs are great for families, Florida road trips and even day trips.
These four springs are all within a 30 minute drive of each other. It is very possible to visit multiple within one day, depending on how long you spend at each one. However each spring has a variety of activities so you may want to allot more time to explore each recreation area fully.
Fort Clinch State Park
History buffs and nature lovers alike flock to Fort Clinch for its outdoor activities and daily reenactments of garrison life. Bring mountain bikes the off-road trails here are some of the best in the state. And why not hunt for sharks teeth along the beach thats close to the Amelia River Campground area?
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Silver Glen Springs Info
Silver Glen Springs is located near Lake George on Highway 19, six miles north of SR 40 in Ocala National Forest. Activities include boating, fishing, picnicking, swimming and snorkeling. Camping is not permitted. The park is open daily 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. with canoe rentals available on site from $16 to $38 . Free kayak launching. Day use fee is $5.50 per person. Snorkeling, but not SCUBA, is permitted.
A single annual pass gets you into several Ocala National Forest recreation areas, including Juniper Springs, Salt Springs, Clearwater Lake, Wildcat Lake, Alexander Springs and Silver Glen Springs. For information, call 352-236-0288
Are There Any Discounts For The Springs In The Ocala National Forest
Not really which is unfortunate since the costs of these springs can add up if youre visiting with a group. The best offer is buying an Annual Recreation Pass which allows you to enter any of the Ocala National Forest Recreation areas for free during the calendar year. The passes start at $60 per person. So it might be worth it if you live in the area or are a frequent visitor of the springs in the Ocala National Forest.
Other Florida Springs you might like:
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Welcome To Silver Springs State Park
Explore one of Americas largest and best loved springs from the parks famous glass bottom boats and see an underwater world.
The main spring is surrounded by serene gardens and historic structures reminiscent of the days when Silver Springs was a major destination for Northerners arriving by steamship.
The park is still a favorite destination and the home of the annual Springsfest celebrating protection and restoration of all Florida springs and waterways.
The Silver River allows kayakers to experience a primeval forest wilderness surrounded by some of the states best managed sandhills, accessible by trails and dotted with friendly campgrounds.
Canoe And Kayak Launch & Rentals
Offered by a visitor service provider
- Single kayak $15 for the first hour, $20 for two hours, $30 for the full day. $35 for full day plus transportation from Ray Wayside Park.
- Canoe, tandem kayak or stand-up paddleboard $20 for the first hour, $30 for two hours, $45 for the full day. $50 for full day plus transportation from Ray Wayside Park.
- There is a $4 launch fee for each private vessel in addition to park admission.
- Livery service to/from Rays Wayside Park may be available .
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Keep It Local: Jonathan Dickinson State Park
You donât have to drive far for some of the best camping the Sunshine State has to offer. In Hobe Sound, outdoors enthusiasts will be thrilled by the 16 different natural communitiesâincluding rare environments like coastal sandhills, upland lakes, and scrub forestsâof Jonathan Dickinson State Park. At 11,500 acres, itâs the largest state park in Southeast Florida and happens to be the closest campground to Jupiter.
Overnight options include family, group, primitive, and equestrian campsites. Those looking for a traditional campground experience can make reservations at Pine Grove, located near the ranger station on the east side of the park, or the 52-site River Campground, located about 4 miles from the park entrance. Both have restrooms with hot showers,a washer and dryer, water, electricity, a table, and a grill.
Aside from camping, activities in the park include horseback riding, fishing, wildlife viewing, bird-watching, peddling Camp Murphyâs 9-mile network of mountain bike trails, paddling the Loxahatchee River, and even hikingâthe ancient sand dune known as Hobe Mountain, which towers 86 feet above sea level, is the highest natural point south of Lake Okeechobee.
Camping at Jonathan Dickinson costs $26/night for tent camping , plus tax and a $6.70 reservation fee. If youâre hesitant to spend the night in nature, you can book one of the parkâs 11 furnished cabins for $95/night , $85/night . 16450 SE Federal Hwy., Hobe Sound 772.546.2771
When Is The Best Time To Visit The Springs In The Ocala National Forest
All times of year are great to visit Florida springs. The springs will feel most refreshing in the summer when its hot outside. They are the most crowded during summertime, holidays and school breaks. As with most activities, the springs will be less crowded if you visit on a weekday. Ive also found that going on an overcast day will keep most of the crowds away. During the winter, springs become sanctuaries for manatees seeking refuge from the cold ocean waters, so some springs may close to water activities during winter. My personal favorite time of year to visit the springs is during spring and fall when they are least crowded and the weather is mild.
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Go Off The Grid: Ocala National Forest
Experienced campers and those with a taste for adventure can head to the Ocala National Forest, about 230 miles north of Jupiter, for full immersion into nature.
The forest has dozens of places to camp scattered throughout its 673 square miles, from full-service campgrounds to tent camping and even a few cabins. But to venture into the true heart of the wilderness, visitors should make camp at Davenport Landing .
Once a stop for steamboats chugging down the Ocklawaha River, today Davenport Landing offers three primitive campsites where explorers can commune with nature, free from disturbances. Dispersed camping within the Ocala National Forest means there are no services or facilities available, so only those with nature knowledge and survival skills should attempt.
Before you go, know the basics of bear awareness, campfire regulations , waste disposal methods, and considerate camping etiquette. Pick a previously used site to minimize disturbance to indigenous flora and fauna, and as you forage for materials to start a fire, collect only dead or downed trees cutting live trees for firewood is prohibited . As always, make sure to leave no trace.
Primitive camping in the Ocala National Forest is free cost varies for developed campgrounds. Visit the website for more information about your chosen area of the forest. 17147 FL-40, Silver Springs fs.usda.gov/ocala 352.625.2520 877.444.6777
Why Choose Our Rv Resort/campground
We feature 199 full hook-up sites, of which 196 are pull-through sites and 140 are with 50 amp service. These sites are all large, convenient, and surrounded by a perfect mix of tropical palm trees and live oak trees. This gorgeous landscape provides shade from the sun, while our heated pool, bocce ball, and shuffleboard courts are a great place to have fun with friends and a good place for family campsite. Our Game Room, better known as the Green Room, is easily accessible and lends itself easily to those individuals interested in cards, bingo, arts & crafts, etc. Our Management Team looks forward to planning a robust activities schedule for all to enjoy while at Silver Springs RV Park to give you the best campground experience.
Silver Springs RV Park honors our brave military and first responder guests, active and retired, with a 10% discount on daily site rates.
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Silver Glen Springs Recreation Area
Both a popular day-use recreation area and an important archaeological site, Silver Glen Springs showcases the delicate balance between enjoying the outdoors and preserving precious resources. With constant 73°F crystal-clear water, Silver Glen Springs is a popular swimming hole. Bring your snorkel and meet the fish face to face.
Silver Glen Springs was once a village site, and is now home to enormous middens – ancient “trash” heaps full of fossilized snail shells and ancient items of everyday lives – beneath a canopy of live oaks.
- Kayak and canoe rentals are available for a trip down Silver Glen Run.
- Boats must stay out of swimming area.
- Please keep off the middens, which are the large mounds behind the fences. These areas mark an important archeological site and sacred space for Native Americans.
Picnicking and Grilling
- 58 picnic tables and 30 pedestal grills are available for visitors to enjoy.
- Be sure to bring your snorkel, although diving or SCUBA diving are not allowed.
- Stay within the marked boundaries of the swimming area to avoid damage to sensitive underwater habitats.
- A walk around the interpretive trails brings this past to life. The 3-mile round-trip Lake George Trail meanders through the woods and often provides a cool breeze. A visit to Jody’s Spring beneath a canopy of palms along the Spring Boils Trail is another enjoyable walk and only 0.75-mile round-trip.
This site is operated by Adventure Ocala.
Wekiwa Springs State Park Apopka
Wekiwa Springs State Park is an amazing opportunity for your camping. With a view of beautiful Wekiwa springs, you can spend in camp while doing many outdoor adventures. Visit you and your family here for swimming, hiking, kayaking, and viewing the beautiful nature with old trees. And you have to take a short drive from Orlando to reach this amazing campground. You can even come in an RV at your wish.
Address: 1800 Wekiwa Cir, Apopka, FL 32712, United States.
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Whats The First Thing I Should Do When Looking For A House
The first thing you should do before searching for rental homes is decide on an ideal budget. Consider how much of your income goes towards bills and what you have left over at the end of each month. Also, remember that when first moving in, you will need to account for at least a deposit and first months rent.
Can I Bring My Own Food Drinks Grill Chairs And/or Canopy Tent
Yes! I definitely recommend bringing your own food and drinks to the springs. Plenty of water is a must for each person in your group. Not all springs have water fountains. You can also bring a picnic lunch to enjoy at the picnic areas. You are allowed to bring your own portable grills and canopy tents. There is lots of space to set up near all these springs.
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Silver Glen Springs Fun Facts
There is so much to learn about Silver Glen. Here are some fun facts to get you excited about your trip to the springs:
- The springs two vents produce an average of 65 million gallons of water daily.
- The springhead is 200-feet in diameter
- The spring and encompassing area encompass 22 acres of water.
- The Spring Boils Trail near Silver Glen Springs leads to nearby Jodys Spring, which is named for the spring described by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings in her book, The Yearling.
- Silver Glen Springs funnels and flows 3,300 feet into Lake George, the second largest lake in Florida behind Lake Okeechobee.
- The spring is also an important archaeological site. Large mounds behind fences are marked and considered a sacred space for Native Americans.
Picnic In Silver Glen Springs
There are picnic tables and barbecue grills located at Silver Glen Springs, making it a great place to bring a picnic lunch and eat a nice meal while enjoying the great view of the turquoise water. There is also a nature walk for families to enjoy.
Bears, raccoons and crows are known to steal food and shiny objects on picnic tables, so remember the spring is located in the forest and dont leave your table without removing those items.
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Utilize The Silver Glen Springs Recreation Area
Silver Glen Springs hours vary by season. Day use fees are $5.50 per person. The Silver Glen Springs Recreation Area makes up a protected swimming area that doesnt allow boats and adjacent uplands that are used for trails and picnic areas.
The upland area forest consists of several trees and places to see birds. Those that love photography should bring their camera to take pictures of the area with Silver Glen Springs in the background.
Traverse the Spring Boils Trail and take a walk on the Lake George Trail too to see the beautiful cypress shoreline of the second largest lake in Florida: Lake George.