Silver Springs State Park

mkosinski Nature

Silver Springs State Park
Image

Mark Kosinski
Landscape and Nature Photographer

Silver Springs State Park

We took a day trip to the Ocala area to visit Silver Springs State Park. The springs refer to a group of artesian springs and a historic tourist attraction. In the early to mid 1800's it began attracting visitors from across the United States.  Glass bottom boat tours began in the 1870’s. During the 1920s, W. Carl Ray and W.M. "Shorty" Davidson leased the land from Ed Carmichael (upon his death the springs were donated to the University of Florida).  They developed the land around the headwaters of the Silver River into an attraction that became known as Silver Springs Nature Theme Park. The attraction featured native animal exhibits, amusement rides, and glass-bottom boat tours of the springs. In 2013, the State of Florida took over operations of Silver Springs and combined it with the adjacent Silver River State Park to form the new Silver Springs State Park.

Silver Springs Canal

Our Experience At Silver Springs

Walking is very easy within the park as almost all of the foot paths are either boardwalks or paved paths. The springs themselves are very beautiful and easily described as breathtaking. We walked the paths directly behind the information booth.
Boardwalk
The boardwalks are extremely well maintained and a good many of them look new. They extend well into the springs and provide very nice vantage points.
One of my favorite photographs I took while at the springs. I took this directly from the boardwalk.
Mirror Pool
Lagoon

There are 3 entrances to the park. The main entrance has a large paved parking lot, the camping entrance and the equestrian entrance. Boat rides and canoes are available as well. Facilities for dining and a large reception facility for parties and receptions is available..

This is one of those places that you should place on your bucket list of places to visit in Florida. The charm, visually stunning beauty and opportunity to relax and enjoy Florida are all here. We will make more trips to this place.