Alachua, Florida is the southernmost state in the United States and is always buzzing with activity. It is one of the largest states, home to various cultures and ethnicities, and some very interesting wildlife. So whether you are a nature lover, a big foodie, a history buff, or a diver — Alachua has something for practically everybody. Here is our list of fun activities to partake in.
Mill Creek Preserve:
This is a joint venture between the County of Alachua and the non-profit Alachua Country Forever/ Alachua Conservation Trust program. It encompasses is nearly 1,200 acres of unexpected sights in an area that is known for its disappearing streams. Taking a hike here means that you pass through a thick curtain of pine plantations. Best part? It is free and the only thing to do here is hike! Here is a look at the Mill Creek Preserve.
Scuba Monkey Dive Centre:
In case ground-level was getting a bit much for you to handle, take a dip below the ocean at the family owned and operated Scuba Monkey Dive Centre. It is PADI certified, which means you can sign up for a diving class, rent gear, or even a diving class! Also, a little birdie tells us that the underwater life here is breathtaking!
O’Leno State Park
Nestled on the banks of the Santa Fe river, visitors can bike, canoe, kayak, fish, swim, watch wildlife and explore hiking and horse trails at the O’Leno State Park.. If you’re lucky and get some good weather, you can even try adventure sports including paddle boarding! Campers can stay overnight with facilities including running water and electricity. If you want to go old-school and throw it back to 1980; you can even use a fire circle that they provide.
Kanapaha Botanical Gardens:
The 62-acre garden is the home for over 24 types of plants, including “wong chuk” which is a premium strand of Chinese royal bamboo, Victorian water lilies and snake arums. It is Southeast’s largest herb gardens, and boasts of Florida’s largest public display of bamboos. View the flowers at their blooming best from June to September.
San Felasco Hammock State Park:
This is a fun trail, suitable for outdoor enthusiasts and regular folks who enjoy a small walk. You can either go on a mountain bike trail or ride a horse. Prep yourself to watch some wildlife — including deer, bats, armadillos, and more. Easy access, easy parking, restrooms and showers are available, for both your body and your bike. Don’t forget a bug spray!
Samuel P Harn Museum of Art
Take yourself back to college with the Samuel P Harn Museum of Art, located on the University of Florida campus. It is home to nearly 7,000 works of art — including African, Asian, contemporary and modern pieces. They also have shows and travelling exhibits through the year. If you’re lucky, you might even catch a live poetry reading or a lecture.