Attractions

Top Choice Museum in Gainesville

Florida Museum of Natural History

The highlight of this excellent natural-history museum is the expansive Butterfly Rainforest (adult/child $13/6). Hundreds of butterflies from 55 to 65 species flutter freely in the soaring, screened vivarium. As yo…
State Park in North Central Florida

Ichetucknee Springs State Park

Relax in a giant inner tube and float through gin-clear waters at this popular park, plopped on the lazy, spring-fed Ichetucknee River.Various water sports are available here, but tubing is certainly the most popula…
Landmark in Gainesville

Bat House & Bat Barn

Across from Gainesville's little Lake Alice, adjacent to a student garden, stands what appears to be two oversized birdhouses. However, these stilted gray-roofed structures are actually home to a family of Brazilian…
State Park in North Central Florida

Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park

Wild horses and bison roam the 20 biological communities that constitute 21,000-acre Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park. This slightly eerie preserve's wet prairie, swamp, hammock and pine flatwoods are crisscrossed…
State Park in DeLand

De Leon Springs State Park

Fifteen minutes north of town, these natural springs flow into the 18,000-acre Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge and were used by Native Americans 6000 years ago. Today they're a popular developed swimming area…
Forest in Ocala National Forest

Ocala National Forest

The second-largest nationally protected forest in the state of Florida, Ocala National Forest is a treasure to be savored. Hidden within 607 square miles of pristine wilderness, you'll find longleaf pine, sand-pine …
State Park in Ocala

Silver Springs State Park

This state park was once an amusement park – glass-bottomed boats were invented here in 1878 to show visitors the natural springs and stunningly clear waters of the Silver River. Although the amusement side of thing…
State Park in North Central Florida

Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park

Rawlings (1896–1953) was the author of the Pulitzer Prize–winning novel The Yearling, a coming-of-age story set in what’s now Ocala National Forest. Her former Cracker-style home is open for tours (adult/child $3/2)…
Historic Site in Cassadaga

Cassadaga Camp Bookstore

Cassadaga's heart is the Cassadaga Camp Bookstore, which sells New Age books, crystals and incense, and serves as the visitor center for the town. Attached is an old spiritualist camp meeting hall, adorned with sign…
State Park in North Central Florida

Blue Spring State Park

The largest spring on the St Johns River, Blue Spring maintains a constant 72°F. Between November and March it becomes the winter refuge for up to 200 West Indian manatees. The best time to see them is before 11am; …