National Parks / Natural World

Blue Spring State Park Avenue Orange City

Where is it at?

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Blue Spring State Park
2100 West French Avenue
Avenue Orange City
FL
32763
Tel: 386-775-3663

Directions

Located west of Orange City. Take U.S. 17/92 to Orange City, go west two miles on French Avenue to the entrance.

Where are we going today?

The largest spring on the St. Johns River, Blue Spring is a designated Manatee Refuge and the winter home (mid-November through March) to a growing population of West Indian Manatees. For centuries, the spring area was home for Native Americans. In 1766 it was visited by Colonial American botanist John Bartram, but it wasn��t until 1856 that it was settled by Louis Thursby and his family. The Thursby house, built in 1872, remains standing. The spring��s crystal clear, 73 degree water can be enjoyed by swimmers, snorkelers, and certified scuba divers with a partner. Swimming or diving with manatees is not permitted and is strictly enforced. The river is popular for fishing, canoeing, and boating. River boat tours are available; for reservations, call St. Johns River Cruises at (386) 917-0724. The park has plenty of picnic areas and a hiking trail. For overnight stays, air-conditioned cabins, a full-facility campground, and primitive campsites are available.
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What people are saying?

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    Beautiful amazing place. especially in the fall. the leaves were so pretty. we went on the st. johns river tour. the best. Rebecca, our guide, knew everything about the plants, birds, animals and so much more. highly recommend. a real treat and up close and personal touch of the true beauty of Florida.

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    I grew up 30 min away from Blue Springs and every time I go home from Chicago it's a must visit for me. It's real Florida for me, beautiful and natural and stunning. When the manatee are there they are amazing to see, I've seen grown men let out whoops when they saw their first, and in the summer when you can swim the cold refreshing water restores the soul.

    There really is no other place like it for me.

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    Great for seeing Manatee from a walkway. The boardwalk is about 10feet above the water, so looking down into the clear water and spotting a Manatee is easy. The long walk makes it nice to observe Manatee in their natural habitat. This park fills up quickly on weekends and holidays, they won't let you in if full and you have to wait in a car line at the entrance. This is good because the walkway can get crowded.

    The campsite are just ok, plus near train tracks so a loud train blasting its horn comes through at night.

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    Took the Harley's down from Jacksonville. Nice ride down to the park and well worth the trip. The wife and I are hobbyists photographers. The spring was full of manatee. Lots of wildlife to photograph. The spring was clear. Very nice place to visit. Campsites looked very nice. We just made a day trip, didn't camp but the sites looked nice. We will be back that's for sure.

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    ..Had a great time. Will come back more near the spring. So we can see more things

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