Wild South Florida — Naturally Wild
 
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The Ultimate Guide to the Outdoors and Environment in Broward, Collier, Martin, Miami-Dade, Monroe and Palm Beach counties.
   
Almanac Places to Visit
     
 
 
   
Big Cypress National Preserve
anhinga big cypress
big cypress national preserve
big cypress national preserve
big cypress national preserve
 

33100 Tamiami Trail East
Ochopee

Website

This is a place of extremes. And everything in between. Want to hike in the solitude of the back country? It's here. Prefer to bring the comforts of civilization with you as get back to nature? You can do that too. The 729,000 acres of Big Cypress National Preserve offers a little bit everything. There are mangrove forests, wet prairies and cypress swamps. Of course.

Big Cypress is unique in concept. It's not a park but rather a compromise of sorts intended balance the needs of various interests, while protecting a vast natural resource from development. There aren't many places like it on the planet. There are three points along Interstate 75 where you can park and hike the back country for a few hours or a few days. Backcountry permits are required for both day and overnight use. Be prepared for wet trails, especially during summer. Entrance is free, but some activities might require a fee.

Big Cypress also can be accessed from U.S. 41 (the park boundary is west of Shark Valley), where there are visitors' centers, RV camping, boardwalks, picnic areas, canoe trails and more backcountry hiking trails and camping. The preserve is an excellent place for birding and spotting wildflowers. Manatees and shore birds are abundant in the winter months, we've been told.

 
 
 
 
More Resources for Big Cypress National Preserve
Institute for Regional Conservation National Parks Foundation — Big Cypress    
 
Photo Gallery for Big Cypress National Preserve
blackeyed susan buckeye showy milkwort palm warbler
little blue heron lobelia petunia milkberry
aster everglades morning glory st johns wort
Unless otherwise stated, all photographs are property of the publishers and may not be used without their express permission.