After the park opens at 9 am, start by checking out the Timucuan Preserve Visitors Center. Their exhibit, “Where the Waters Meet” talks about the environment of the Preserve. If you’re searching for more information, the center has a bookstore and information desk. Families can participate in the Junior Ranger program to engage children ages 4-12 in the history and ecological features of the park.
Insider Tip: Don’t forget to bring plenty of water!
Take a hike through one of the many trails featured in the park. The Hammock Trail is a 1-mile circular loop with ecosystem markers along the way. You’ll be able to see shady hammocks and beautiful beaches along the way. Dogs are permitted on this trail (on a leash) so bring your whole family to explore and enjoy.
Relax and enjoy a picnic lunch at one of the designated picnic areas within the park.
Take the boardwalk from the Visitors Center to the Spanish Pond, featuring an exhibit of the 500 Spanish soldiers, led by Pedro Menedez, who sought encampment in the area. After that, head to the Theodore Roosevelt Area. The peaceful trails include vast grasslands and piles of discarded oyster shells. There is a bird observation platform on site at the end of the Willie Browne Trail. Take in the view of the marshes and St. Johns River.
To end the day, check out one of the local restaurants in the surrounding areas. BBQ Barn, serving southern style barbecue, Safe Harbor Seafood Market & Restaurant featuring the local Mayport shrimp.
If you’re looking for more trails, adventure or history of the Fort Caroline Memorial, check HERE.