Florida State Parks are in various stages of accessibility, and are working to improve access to services and facilities. Should you need assistance to enable your full participation, please contact the individual park office as soon as possible. Sometimes as many as ten days may be needed to schedule a particular accommodation.

Management & Protection
Florida State Parks are managed as natural systems. All plant and animal life is protected in state parks. Hunting, livestock grazing and timber removal are not permitted. Do not remove, deface, mutilate or molest any natural resources. For your safety, do not feed any animals. Intoxicants and firearms are prohibited.

Hours of Operation
Florida state parks are open from 8 a.m. until sundown 365 days a year.

Pets are not allowed in camping areas, on bathing beaches, in concession areas and may be restricted in other designated areas of the park. Where pets are allowed, they must be kept on a six-foot, hand-held leash and well-behaved at all times. Service dogs are welcome in all areas of the parks. .

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Cypress "knees" are above-water roots
which take in oxygen.
Opened to the public in 1955, Manatee Springs State Park offers an array of opportunities for enjoying the "Real Florida" outdoors.

The most prominent natural feature in the 2,075-acre park is Manatee Spring itself. A first-magnitude spring, it produces 81,280 gallons of crystal-clear water every minute or approximately 117 million gallons daily. Water from the spring run flows into the Suwannee River and then meets the Gulf of Mexico 23 miles downstream. A boardwalk next to the spring run offers a view of the river swamp which is alive with cyrpress, gum, ash and maple trees. The boardwalk ends at a pavilion and a floating boat dock out on the scenic Suwannee River.

Animals frequently spotted in the hammock and sandhill communities of the park include white-tailed deer and various small mammals and birds. The manatee, an endangered species for which the park is named, can also be viewed from the boardwalk. The constant 72-degree

Manatees can be viewed from the boardwalk.
temperature in the spring provides a warm refuge for the large, gentle mammal during the fall and winter months. Manatee sightings occur year round with the best viewing months being January through April.

Activities at the park include picnicking, fishing, swimming, canoeing, boating access nearby, hiking and biking on the 8.5-mile north end trail system, scuba diving, nature study and camping. Picnic pavilions are available to reserve for family and business get-togethers.

Scuba divers must present their certification upon registration. Open water, cavern and cave diving is available in Manatee Spring or Catfish Hotel Sink. Dive instructors are required to purchase a Commericial Dive Permit.

The camp areas have full-facility restrooms, water, picnic table and ground grill. Campfires are permitted in the ground grill. The campsites are located in a hammock of towering oaks, magnolias and hickory trees. Thirty amp electrical service is also available. A youth camp for organized youth groups is also available. Reservations are accepted and recommended for campsites. The park concession offers food, drinks, gifts, camper supplies and canoe rentals.

Interpretive programs such as nature walks, slide and video programs, discovery wagon tours and ranger talks, are offered to answer questions and educate the public about the resources found in this park and others. Park special events include Treasure Hunts on Memorial and Labor Days, "Ol Fashioned River Party" in April, and the "Manatee Springs Christmas Festival" in December.

Manatee Springs State Park is located at the end of S.R. 320, off U.S. 98, six miles west of Chiefland.


Manatee Springs State Park

11650 N.W. 115th St.

Chiefland, Florida 32626

(352) 493-6072

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