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Salt Springs Recreation Area

Located in the heart of Salt Springs, on State Road 19 between County Road 314 & 316, Salt Springs Recreation Area is open year-round and is a major attraction for locals & visitors alike.  In addition to camping, hiking, swimming & various recreational water activities, the main attraction is the ancient subterranean springs which flow year-round at a constant temperature of 72 degrees and pump approximately 53 million gallons of crystal clear water per day....

Salt Springs Run Marina and Landing

Located off State Road 19, Salt Springs Run Marina & Landing is adjacent to Salt Springs Recreation Area, where crystal clear water rises from the Springs and flows approx. 5 miles along Salt Springs Run into Lake George.  Salt Springs Run Marina provides a number of recreational opportunities, including fishing, swimming, snorkeling, camping, picnicking & sightseeing.In additional to a public boat ramp, store, gift shop & refreshments, they also have...

Salt Springs Observation Trail

Located off State Road 19, Salt Springs Observation Trail is just south of the intersection of County Road 314.  Showcasing a variety of habitats on a slope down from the Big Scrub to the sinuous Salt Springs Run, the Salt Springs Observation Trail is a 1.9-mile loop trail offering excellent birding from an observation deck along the famed waterway.  When Salt Springs Run is high, the trail tends...

Salt Springs Civic Center

Located on County Road 316, the Park offers various recreational opportunities that include basketball, tennis, pickle ball, soccer, football, volleyball, bocce ball, horseshoes, a 1/4 mile walking trail and fenced playground.  Maintained by the Salt Springs Civic Association and 'Friends of the Park' via donations & volunteer efforts, the Park is open year-round from dawn to dusk for general use by the public

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Community Yardsale & Fleamarket

Open year-round on Saturdays from 7am to 2pm, we have two venues offering a bounty of wares from numerous vendors & local merchants.  Get there early for the best selection of goods!

--Salt Springs Community Yard Sale/Champions Market & Breakfast Buffet is located off County Road 314 at Bass Champions Restaurant -- for additional info and/or to reserve vendor space, call Bass Champions at 352-685-0000.

--Salt Springs Flea Market is located at the intersection of Hwy 19 & 316 at Salt Springs Square -- For additional info and/or to reserve vendor space, call Salty's Country Store at 352-685-0085.

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Local Dining and Take -out

Offering some of the areas best Southern Home Cooking, there are numerous locations in and around Salt Springs to satisfy your appetite.​  Whether you're looking for a sit-down or take-out option, your local choices include:  Bass Champions Restaurant & Lodge (on CR 314 just west of SR 19), Cactus Jack's (on CR 314 between FR 11/88 & SR 19), Dollar General (on CR 316 at SR 19), 88 Store & Pub (on FR 11/88 between CR 314 & CR 316), Papa Joe's Drive-In (on SR 19 just north of CR 314), Salt Springs Grocery, Deli & Pizza (on SR 19 between CR 314 & CR 316), Salt Springs Pit-Stop & Subway (on SR 19 between CR 314 & CR 316), Salty's Country Store & Pizza (on SR 19 at CR 316), Sportsman's Lodge & Store (on CR 314 just west of SR 19), Square Meal Restaurant (on SR 19 at CR 316), and The VFW offering meals nightly (on CR 314 just east of FR 11/88).

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Ocala National Forest
ONF Natural Resources
Public Boat Ramps

In addition to the many lakes, ponds & rivers in the Forest, it is also home to four major natural springs of crystal clear water; Alexander Springs, Juniper Springs, Salt Springs, and Silver Glen Springs. Water recreation is plentiful and camping is available at various locations including Alexander Springs, Big Bass Lake, Big Scrub, Buck Lake, Clearwater Lake, Lake Delancy, Doe Lake, Grassy Pond, Halfmoon Lake, Hopkin's Prairie, Juniper Springs, Camp La-No-Che, Salt Springs and Silver River. 

With millions of visitors each year, the Ocala National Forest (ONF) encompasses approx. 383,000 acres, or 650+ square miles, and is the second largest National Forest in the State of Florida.  Established in 1908, ONF is the oldest National Forest east of the Mississippi River and the southern-most National Forest in the continental United States.  The Forest lies between the Ocklawaha & St Johns Rivers and contains over 600 natural lakes, ponds & rivers, as well as central highlands, coastal lowlands, swamps & springs.

With numerous lakes, rivers and springs, water is an abundant resource within the Forest with several options for watercraft access.  The St. Johns River and the Ocklawaha River are renowned waterways in the Forest and with many other waterways, boating is a popular activity in the area. ​ Motorized boating includes the use of outboard motors, trolling motors, and Jetskis.  Please keep your safety, and that of those around you, first and foremost by practicing safe boating.

ATV and Bike Trails

The Ocala National Forest is a unique and productive forest that is actively managed to restore native environments while providing numerous recreational opportunities.  The Forest maintains two trail systems for off-road vehicles, providing opportunities for both licensed & unlicensed vehicles:  

--Ocala North OHV Trail extends 125 miles and is located off State Road 19, north of County Road 316.

Ocala Shooting Range

The Shooting Range is an unsupervised facility for pistols, rifles and shotguns.  Cooperation amongst all shooters is a must!  Managed by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, use of the Range is free to the public and is open from dawn to dusk Thursday thru Tuesday, and from 1pm to dusk each Wednesday (the facility is closed Wednesday mornings for maintenance & repairs). 

The Florida Trail

Spanning 1,400 miles, from Big Cypress National Preserve to Fort Pickens at Gulf Island National Seashore, the Florida Trail is one of eleven National Scenic Trails in the United States.  

Also known as the Florida National Scenic Trail, the Florida Trail was established by Jim Kern who founded the Florida Trail Association in October 1966. 

Florida Black Bear Scenic Byway

Crossing through the Ocala National Forest, the Florida Black Bear Scenic Byway is filled with long stretches of undisturbed 'Natural Florida' with plenty of fresh air and an array of wildlife to behold.

Stretching from Palatka to Altoona, and from Silver Springs to Ormond Beach, the Florida Black Bear Scenic Byway offers more than 60 miles of exploration via scenic roads through the heart of the Ocala National Forest. 

Fort Gates Ferrry

Located approx. 7 miles from the intersection of State Road 19 & County Road 316, you may want to consider utilizing the Fort Gates Ferry to shorten your trip from Salt Springs to the East Coast.  Established in 1856, the Ferry is the shortest route from State Road 19 in Salt Springs to State Road 17 in Fruitland / Welaka and it crosses the St. Johns River between Lake George & Little Lake George.For more info on the Ferry and/or the Gateway Fishing Camp at Fort Gates, please call 386-467-2411.​

Historic Kerr City

Located off County Road 316, approx. 3 miles west of Salt Springs, Kerr City is a wonderfully preserved ghost town, which is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.  Covering 205 acres, Kerr City was the second town platted in Marion County and it grew to 100 residents in its day.  Originally a cotton plantation during the Civil War, Kerr City flourished as an orange growing community for a number of years and served as a stage coach stop for travelers commuting from the St. Johns River to Ocala.

Caravelle Ranch Wildlife Management

Nestled along the St. Johns River, Caravelle Ranch and Wildlife Management Area offers 27,251 acres of cooperative public wildlife & recreation lands featuring hardwood river swamps, pine flatwoods, improved pastures, small depression ponds and hardwood hammocks.Entrance points are located along State Road 19, County Road 310 and Silver Lake Drive.​ ​For additional info, please call 352-732-1225 

Rodman Resovoir and Recreation Area

Located South of Palatka off State Road 19, Rodman Reservoir covers 9,500 acres and is a premier largemouth bass fishery offering some of the best fishing in Northeast Florida.  

In 1968, the Reservoir (also know as Lake Ocklawaha) was created when an earthen dam was built across the Ocklawaha River whereby flooding the area woodlands. 

Cross Florida Barge Canal and Greenway

Formerly known as the Cross Florida Barge Canal, the Marjorie Harris Carr Cross Florida Greenway crosses Central Florida from the St. Johns River to the Gulf of Mexico.

This 110 mile corridor offers a wide variety of trails & recreational areas encompassing diverse natural habitats for observing Florida's native flora & fauna.

Rodeheaver Boys Ranch

Located 12 miles South of Palatka, off State Road 19, on 790 acres of land donated by Homer Rodeheaver in 1950, Rodeheaver Boys Ranch was established to provide a wholesome environment for needy boys to learn & grow, giving them a second chance for a better life.  Through his foresight, the ideal setting was created for the development & training of these youngsters, enabling them to flourish and grow into better menFor more information, please call 386-328-1281

Ravine Gardens State Park

Located in Palatka, Ravine Gardens State Park has two ravines up to 120 feet deep with steep banks at 45 degree angles.  Unlike common gullies, trenches or sinkholes caused by temporary flooding, the steephead ravine is a permanent feature with a spring-fed creek that never dries up, called Whitewater Branch.  The underground water bubbling up cuts into the bank and carries the sand & soil downstream to the St Johns River.The garden's peak flowering period is azalea season, late January to April. For additional information, call 386-329-3721

William Bartrum Trails

The Putnam County Bartram Trail was developed to assist those interested in following in the footsteps of explorers & adventurers, John and William Bartram.  These Trails are intended to be a continual work in progress;

Silver Springs State Park

Located in Silver Springs/Ocala and famous for its glass bottom boats, Silver Springs State Park combines the charm of a historic Florida attraction with the crystal clear beauty of one of the last uninhabited spring runs in the state. There are three entrances to Silver Springs State ParkFor additional information, please call 352-236-7148

Rails-to-Trails and More

Whether you’re getting outdoors for recreation or fitness, you’ll discover some great trails for bicycling,

hiking, running and more that stretch from Lake Butler through Palatka to St Augustine.

--Palatka to Lake Butler State Trail (PLB) corridor stretches nearly 47 miles from SR 238 in Lake Butler to west of US 17 in Palatka. The trail follows the bed of the former Norfolk-Southern Railroad right-of-way through Putnam, Union, Clay and Bradford counties.

The Yearling Trail

In the fall of 1876, Reuben and Sara Jane Long established a homestead on Pat’s Island, a high spot in the Big Scrub. Their son, Melvin, found and adopted a fawn he named Dogwood. More than 50 years later, author Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings spent time at the Long homestead and learned about the fawn.  It inspired her to write The Yearling, her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel.

City of Murals
Hog Waller Mud Bog
Waleka National Fish Aquarium

The Conlee​-Snyder Mural Committee was initiated by the City of Palatka Historic Preservation Board and began operation in early 1998 under the guidance of Downtown Palatka, Inc.  The mission of the Committee is to accurately depict the historical, cultural, and natural riches of Palatka and Putnam County in larger-than-life murals, which can be found throughout downtown Palatka. 

Hog Waller is a 1100 acre outdoor family fun park owned by a local Putnam County family. Open two weekends a month from September to May, each 1st and 3rd weekend, you can find many people riding through the woods on ATVs and UTVs or braving the huge mud pit with specially designed trucks and cars. All are invited to come out for a weekend of fun!  For additional information, please call 386-643-8042

Located on County Road 309 in Welaka, the Welaka National Fish Hatchery & Aquarium is a warm water fish hatchery, and the aquarium displays local fresh water fish species and educational information about efforts of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Agencies to preserve native wildlife.  For additional information, please call 386-467-2374

Mount Royal Indian Temple Mound

Located in Welaka on Mount Royal Road, the Mount Royal Indian Temple Mound was built and used as a ceremonial center by the Timucuan Indians, this 20 foot high archaelogical site dates back to 1250 and is the largest sand mound in Florida.  For additional information, please call 386-467-2863

River Rat RC Raceway

Located on State Road 207 in East Palatka, River Rat Remote Control Raceway offers dirt oval racing  with a 320 ft run line of tight smooth clay and 12 degree banking, and off-road racing on a 120 x 70 ft track area with multiple levels that change from 0 to 5 ft above the lowest point.  Our facility also includes a 2,400 sq ft hobby shop on-site for all your racing needs and, with 7-acres of land, we have easy access for cars, trucks, trailers and campers.  For additional information, please call 386-325-4025

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