San Marcos de Apalache Historic State Park provides resource-based recreation while preserving, interpreting and restoring natural and cultural resources. The park has something for every nature enthusiast; including self-guided interpretive trails, guided tours, wildlife discovery, fishing and so much more.
Canoeing and Kayaking
Winter Haven, Florida is a unique, Premier City. It has countless recreational, social and special events. The City recognizes the importance of a high quality of life to Winter Haven residents and visitors. The City strives to ensure outdoor activities for all ages and walks of life. Winter Haven has numerous nature parks, boat ramps, fishing docks and walking trails throughout the city.
Sitting on the northern shoreline of its namesake, Big Lagoon State Park's 655 upland acres separate the mainland from Perdido Key and the Gulf of Mexico. Natural communities, ranging from saltwater marshes to pine flatwoods, attract a wide variety of birds, especially during the spring and fall migrations, while the beaches, shallow bays, nature trails and open woodlands offer splendid opportunities for nature study. The park also beckons visitors to camp, swim, fish, boat, canoe and hike. Crabbing in the shallow waters of Big Lagoon is a popular activity as well.
Based on the principles of visionary environmental advocate, Arthur R. Marshall, Jr. (1919-1985), the mission of the Foundation is to develop, promote, and deliver science-based education and public outreach programs central to restoration of the greater Everglades ecosystem and its historic "River of Grass." Established in 1998, the Foundation has quickly grown to become a leader in environmental education and is the only non-profit in South Florida offering hands-on learning opportunities in Everglades restoration and preservation.
Opened in 1996, this 17 acre Regional Park is built and operated through a cooperative effort of partners & sponsors. While the land is owned by Florida Power & Light, the facilities were originally funded by Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau. Seasonal staffing is provided by Lee County Parks & Recreation. Native plant habitats and gardens have been planted and maintained by the Coccoloba Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society and many volunteers.
YMCA Camp Wewa is a co-ed camp, located 15 miles north of Orlando in Apopka, Florida. Orlando and all of its attractions (Disney, Universal, Sea World, etc.) are all within a 30-minute drive. Daytona Beach (The World's Most Famous Beach) is just a short 60-minute drive away. Camp Wewa opened in 1950, providing fun, safe, and rewarding camp experiences to campers and staff on the same site.
The Great Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail is a 190-mile marked canoe and kayak trail that meanders through the coastal waters and inland tributaries of Lee County, Florida. The Paddling Trail allows modern paddlers to navigate ancient paths in Southwest Florida by kayak or canoe where Calusa Indians once traveled, past pristine islands and waters teeming with wildlife.
The Warren W. Willis Camp is the centerpiece of the Florida Conference of United Methodist Church’s camping ministry. Located in Fruitland Park it has a wide variety of outdoor activities for youth. The camp offers Summer Day Camps, Summer Residential Camps and Retreats. Willis Camp features four lodges, eight cabins and five wilderness cabins. Additonal amenities include a challenge course, nature tours, hiking, canoeing, volleyball, basketball,4-square and fishing.
Grassy Waters Preserve is a community environmental education center whose mission is to connect visitors of all ages with the pristine wetland ecosystem that acts as their water supply. Through place-based experiential learning, Grassy Waters seeks to cultivate a deeper appreciation of the natural environment while educating, inspiring, and empowering citizens. By fostering a sense of environmental stewardship, Grassy Waters hopes to ensure that this unique wetland system continues to meet both human and ecological freshwater needs for generations to come.