Picture of the kayaking and canoeing area of Wekiwa Springs State Park

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Although Disney World is undoubtedly the most popular destination in Central Florida, you do not want to miss out on Wekiwa Springs. With a seemingly endless number of activities, including swimming in a natural freshwater pool, hiking, and canoeing/kayaking, this gorgeous state park has something for everyone.

As a Florida resident, I could not believe I hadn’t visited Wekiwa Springs sooner. In fact, I hope to go weekly (maybe even during my lunch breaks). It is the perfect place for residents to chill and visitors to add a calm element to their Disney itineraries.

Things to Know Before You Go

Below, I have provided some of the information that I think is important for you to know before your visit to Wekiwa Springs State Park. Although some of this information was gathered from my personal experience, much of it was taken from the Wekiwa Springs State Park’s official website. You should confirm to ensure that nothing has changed.

  • Address: 1800 Wekiwa Circle, Apopka FL 32712
  • The park is open from 8 AM until sundown, 365 days a year
  • Admission fees are as follows: $6 per vehicle (limit of eight people), $4 for a single-occupant vehicle, and $2 for pedestrians, bicyclists, extra passengers, and passengers in vehicle with holder of Annual Individual Entrance Pass
  • During peak hours, the park may reach capacity and close to new visitors. If you have a camping reservation, you’ll be permitted to enter; however, all others will be turned away during these times. I suggest arriving early to ensure you can enjoy the park.
  • This may seem obvious, but if you plan on hiking and swimming, bring flip-flops/water shoes AND sneakers. I made the mistake of only bringing sneakers. The ground is very sandy and dirty, and your feet will get filthy. You will thank me later.
  • Bring bug spray, especially if you plan on hiking. There are a lot of creepy crawlies on the trail, and sometimes they get a little too close for comfort! Additionally, I ran into some deer; where there are deer, there are ticks.
  • Floating rafts/tubes and snorkels are permitted in the springs.
  • Although rare, alligators may venture into the swimming area of Wekiwa Springs. After all, it is in Florida. It is generally considered safe to swim in these waters, but this is something to be mindful of!
  • If you get hungry or thirsty, a snack bar and drink vending machine are located near the springs; they also sell things you may have forgotten, as well as souvenirs. The snack bar is open daily from 9 AM to 5 PM.
  • Those bringing their own food can use the picnic tables and grills near the parking lot.

Things to Do at Wekiwa Springs State Park

Hiking the Wekiwa Springs Nature Trails

Image Credit: Florida State Parks. View their PDF trail guide here.

Based on the map above, it is clear that there is a large number of hiking opportunities at Wekiwa Springs State Park. I hiked the Wet-to-Dry, white (Main Hiking Trail), and yellow (Volksmarch Trail) trails during my visit. I am not a super experienced hiker, but I found these three trails to be easy; no climbing was involved, and the path itself was generally flat. However, due to the trails being a little longer than expected (and my crippling fear of lubber grasshoppers), I never made it to Sand Lake, which is one of the highlights of the Main Hiking Trail. Quite honestly, I did get lost; I just kept walking where the path took me. I recommend printing this map before you go to ensure you make the most of your trip.

During your hike. You may see some of Central Florida’s wildlife. I saw a tortoise and two families of deer. Make sure to respect them and keep your distance, as you are a visitor in their home.

Swimming in Wekiwa Springs

After a long, sweaty hike, there is nothing better than taking a dip in the crystal-clear waters of Wekiwa Springs; it is untreated freshwater, so you feel clean when you get out! I will be honest; the water was really cold (it maintains a temperature of 72 degrees throughout the year), but my friend and I acclimated to it quickly. In most areas, the water is too deep to stand in (or maybe I am just short), so you should bring a floatation device if you are not great at swimming. Please note that it is NOT deep enough to dive.

Because the water at Wekiwa Springs is so clear, many people choose to snorkel. Although I did not do this, I could see some of the little fish and tadpoles as I was swimming around.

If you have children or are just tired of swimming, there is a “kiddie pool.” I hung out in this area for most of my time in the springs. After my hike, I was a bit too tired to swim, so this area was the perfect place to chill and cool down. Those who REALLY don’t want to be in the water can picnic on the nearby lawn.

Other Activities

Above, I listed and described the activities I enjoyed during my short daytrip to Wekiwa Springs State Park; however, it offers a ton of other experiences, such as biking, birding, camping, fishing, geo-seeking, horseback riding, paddling (canoe or kayak), picnicking, snorkeling, and wildlife viewing. For more information, click here.

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Have any questions about visiting Wekiwa Springs State Park? Contact me or let me know in the comments!

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