Little Manatee River State Park is a hidden gem in southern Hillsborough County, offering opportunities for wildlife viewing and exploration by canoe, foot, or horseback. The Little Manatee River winds through the park with many oxbows, twists and turns to explore. A 6.5 mile Hiking Trail loops through six unique natural communities, offering scenic river overlooks and a surprise around every bend. Come for the day, or make reservations to camp overnight.
This jewel of a park is a great place to get away for a weekend or a week-long vacation. Picnic facilities and a swimming area are located near the scenic point where the Ochlockonee and Dead Rivers intersect. Ochlockonee, which means "yellow waters," is a mix of brackish, tidal surge, and fresh water. Pristine and deep, the river empties into the Gulf of Mexico. Trails allow visitors to explore the park and see the diverse wildlife, including the red-cockaded woodpecker, and natural communities such as pine flatwoods and oak thickets. A boat ramp provides easy access to the river.
Hillsborough River State Park provides resource-based recreation while preserving, interrupting and restoring natural and cultural resources. We offer a youth camp for youth organizations to provide a camping experience that fosters the Leave No Trace concepts. We offer Ranger and volunteer-led nature walks, campfire programs and interpretive programing. The park also offers hiking trails, biking trails, canoe rentals, swimming, 112 campsites, primitive camping and fishing.
The US Forest Service provides the general public with information on land management practices. Osceola National Forest offers many opportunities for a wide range of visitor experiences, such as camping, hiking, swimming, fishing, hunting, riding horse trails, wildlife viewing and many more. Currently the Osceola National Forest offers several youth opportunities, including the Junior Rangers Program, Youth Conservation Core, and others as they become available.
Basecamp Apalach is a one stop guide service for educational tours in Franklin and Gulf counties. Our mission is to lead accessible explorations to singular destinations while providing inspiring experiences and instilling environmental sustainability ethics. Our tours emphasize best management practices for wildlife viewing, environmental education, as well as providing knowledge about the natural and cultural history of the Forgotten Coast. We offer walking tours, geocaching challenges, birding tours and kayak trips to local tributaries off the Apalachicola River Basin.
Science Eye offers unique, science and environmental educational programs for teachers, home schoolers, camps, organization, clubs, scouts, weekend events and birthdays. Our field and at-your-site program safaris are engaging, hands-on, inquiry-based programs that enable children and adults to explore the world around them, gain new insights and make them aware that science is an exciting part of everything they do. Our goal is to have fun while instilling self-confidence, develop critical thinking skills and to create a positive relationship with the environment.