Florida has some great weather and beautiful places as a consequence it can be crowded in parts. Fortunately if you prefer the company of nature for a neighbor there are wild and remote parts of the state that are equally beautiful. We set out to experience one of the most beautifully preserved areas in the state near Tallahassee to experience the wonder.
The Northwestern part of Florida is more sparsely populated than other parts of the State and the landscape changes to some higher hills from the Southern subtropics. The temperature was agreeable even when we journeyed in early Spring. There are more established rivers here as well as curious formations like sink holes, springs and large marshes. The following are the main areas to see.
St Mark’s Wildlife Refuge
This is the most developed park in the region. If you only have time for one place go here. There is a nice visitors center with maps and guides. Trails go through forests, prairies, marshes and the coastline. The trails are very well marked and full of wildlife. There is ample parking, fishing, boat launching and a historic light house on the beach.
Aucilla Wildlife Preserve
This is built around the active but winding Aucilla River which travels from the State of Georgia to the Gulf of Mexico. It widens out into many separate channels at the end and the tide is strong so be careful if kayaking. further upstream it goes underground in parts, has small rapids and it is flanked by some wonderful wild trails. For access and parking just follow some road signs but maps aren’t as helpful out in the many many acres of land. Just remember where you parked and go in daylight with plenty of supplies if hiking. There is good wildlife viewing.
Econfina River State Park
This river park has salt marshes, pine islands and over 14 miles of trails to explore not to mention the many waterways leading out to the Gulf of Mexico. Popular things to do are hike, camp, birdwatching, cycling and horseback riding. There are minimal facilities but ample parking to head out and enjoy the various landscapes.