If you are searching for a pleasant day trip that won’t break the bank, you might think about going to one of Florida’s numerous state parks. These parks, which are just a short drive away from Miami, have many things to do to keep you occupied the whole day. Here are three parks that are worth seeing.
Oleta River State Park
Location: 3400 NE 163rd St North Miami 33160
The first state park in the Miami area worth visiting is Oleta River State Park, which is the largest urban park in Florida. The park is located on the beaches of Biscayne Bay, so there’s a beach area for patrons to enjoy swimming and fishing opportunities. There are also picnic areas and pavilions to enjoy a small family barbeque or put together a large family reunion. Oleta River State Park also has cabins (with air conditioning) and campsites for those interested in an extended stay.
Of course, that’s the least of what Oleta River State Park offers. The river itself weaves through a beautiful forest that guests can explore via canoe or kayak, with rentals available inside the park for novices who’d like to try canoeing or kayaking for the first time. However, Oleta River State Park is best known for its bike trails.
The wide variety of bike trails inside the park gives inexperienced and more advanced mountain bikers plenty of trails to enjoy. Finally, it wouldn’t be a park without the opportunity to see wildlife. Oleta River State Park offers guests a place to see manatees, dolphins, alligators, and other types of traditional Florida wildlife.
The biggest urban parks in Florida have a variety of activities on land and in the water. Paddle your kayak through the mangroves, spend the night in a tent, or spend the day lounging in one of the numerous pavilions on the grounds.
Bill Baggs State Park
Location: 1200 S Crandon Blvd Miami
Just a little south of the city of Miami is Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park, which is on the southern end of the island of Key Biscayne. The park is home to more than a mile of beachfront, which is considered one of the country’s best beaches.
In addition to swimming and snorkeling, the water is also open to boating, canoeing, kayaking, and some of the best shoreline fishing in south Florida. For those less water savvy, there are biking and hiking available and areas to view wildlife.
Of course, Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park is perhaps best known for being home to the Cape Florida Light lighthouse. This lighthouse was built in 1825 and is Miami-Dade County’s longest-standing structure. Guests can take tours of the lighthouse twice daily, five days per week. The park is also home to two restaurants offering authentic Cuban food for those who want a good meal without packing a picnic.
Visitors flock to Florida for more than just the sunshine. The state park also has stunning vistas of the Atlantic Ocean and Biscayne Bay and abundant wildlife and flora, good restaurants, and a variety of other activities. However, Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park may become congested on weekends. As a result, we suggest arriving early or on a weekday.
Barnacle Historic State Park
Location: 3485 Main Hwy, Miami, FL 33133, United States
Finally, there’s the Barnacle Historic State Park. This is a small, historical site on the shores of Biscayne Bay and the former home of Ralph Middleton Munroe, a pioneer of the area. The Barnacle, built-in 1891, provides a peek into frontier life during the Bay Era when all transit to and from Miami was by water.
This was the house of Ralph Middleton Munroe, one of Coconut Grove’s most attractive and prominent pioneers, and it was located on the shores of Biscayne Bay. Munroe kept his land’s forest intact, creating just a meandering buggy track through the hammock that was barely big enough for one vehicle. Consequently, there are many enormous, ancient trees on the site.
The Barnacle Historic Form Park has been left in its natural state and includes reconstructions of two of Munroe’s sailboats: Egret, a 28-foot (8.5m) sharpie ketch constructed in 1886, and the Flying Proa, created in 1898.
The Barnacle is a terrific spot to relax and enjoy simple pleasures such as an outdoor concert, a picnic on the grass, a stroll along a tree-lined road with the family dog, or sitting in a chair on the big front porch while watching the sailboats go by.
While you are on vacation in Miami and staying at one of the Miami Beach vacation rentals, a Miami penthouse for rent, or one of the villas for rent in Miami, you can take advantage of the many diverse available activities visitors at these state parks. Oleta River State Park, Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park, and Barnacle Historic State Park are all great places to visit in Miami.
They offer something for everyone, whether you’re looking for a place to enjoy nature, have some fun in the sun, or learn about history. Some of these activities include swimming, fishing, biking, and hiking. They also provide stunning vistas of the surrounding natural area and historical buildings that offer visitors an insight into the lives of Florida’s early settlers.
If you’re seeking a spot where you can unwind and appreciate the beauty of nature, any one of these state parks is guaranteed to meet your needs.