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Florida State Parks

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USA Parks
North Central Region
Fanning Springs State Park
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18020 N.W. Highway 19
Fanning Springs, Florida   32693

Phone: 352-463-3420
Reservations: 352-463-3420
Located on the Suwannee River, this inviting source of cool, clear water has attracted people for thousands of years. As a strong 2nd magnitude springs, Fanning Springs provides refreshing swimming or snorkeling on a hot day. Visitors can enter the park by car or arrive by boat from the Suwannee river. Many visitors enjoy the picnic area, playground, volleyball court or use the park's large open areas for ball games, throwing Frisbees, and also for events. There is a canoe/kayak launch available, a nature trail and a boardwalk that overlooks the river. In the summer the gazebo at the end of the boardwalk is a fine place to watch sturgeon jumping. Manatees are often seen in the springs during the winter months and occasionally in the summer. White-tailed deer, gray squirrels, red-shouldered hawks, pileated woodpeckers, and barred owls are some of the other animals seen in the park. Reserve a canoe or kayak by calling Suwannee Guides and Outfitters at (352) 542-8331. If you bring a pet please remember they must be on a hand held leash no longer than six feet. For the safety of our non-pet owning guests, there are restricted areas (the main picnic and swimming areas). Please observe signs and restrict pets to more remote sections of the park. The Park is located on U.S. 19/98 in the town of Fanning Springs.
Nature of the Area
White-tailed deer, gray squirrels, red-shouldered hawks, pileated woodpeckers, and barred owls are some of the animals seen in the park.
History of the Area
Nearby Fort Fanning was built in 1838 during the Second Seminole War. The Fort was originally called "Palmetto", but was renamed in honor of Colonel Alexander Campbell Wilder Fannin (1788-1846). Made of wood, and situated in a warm humid climate, remnants of the actual fort have long since disappeared.

Colonel Fannin served under General Andrew Jackson in the First Seminole War. As a lieutenant at the beginning of the Second Seminole War he was noted for outstanding service when he lead a charge in a battle near the Withlacoochee River. His objective, during the Second Seminole War, was to capture Seminoles for deportation to the West.

Until railroads crossed the Suwannee River early this century, the Fanning Springs area served as local boat landing. Products such as cotton, lumber, turpentine, and other plantation products would be loaded and hauled off while household and farm supplies would be received.
Annual Entrance Passes can be purchased at all park ranger stations and museums. If you require immediate use of your pass, this is the best option. Passes can be purchased during regular business hours 365 days a year. Please call the park in advance to ensure availability. Those who are eligible for discounted or free passes may use this method to receive their pass. Annual Entrance Passes may be purchased online by visiting the FLORIDA STATE PARKS ANNUALENTRANCE PASSES web page.
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Those wishing to discover a rewarding destination off the beaten trail while visiting Florida would be well advised to consider the appeal of Fanning Springs State Park, strikingly situated slightly inland from...more
Each of our cabins can accommodate a maximum of 6 people. These spacious two-bedroom cabins have centralized heating and cooling, a gas fireplace, screened-in porch, and kitchenette. They are fully equipped with linens and kitchen utensils. One of the cabins is ADA accessible. Pets are not permitted in the cabins or cabin area. No minimum or maximum stay is required. Cabin Reservations can be made up to 11 months in advance through Reserve America.
Fanning Springs is the perfect place to cool off in the summer heat. Swimmers can jump from a platform into the deepest part of the swim area or wade in from the shore or dock. Toddlers and those just learning to swim can stay with their parents in a designated shallow area. The refreshing crystal-clear water is a cool 72 degrees year round. There is no charge for playing in the swimming and picnicking area of Fanning Springs State Park!
Visitors wishing to come by boat may enter the park via the Suwannee River. Be careful though because Fanning Springs' short run may contain manatees and idle speeds are required.
Fishing is permitted within the park in designated areas. Please contact park staff for exact locations. Paddlers may launch from park facilities to access the river. A State of Florida fishing license is required.
Fanning Springs is an ideal place to begin or end a Suwannee River canoe journey. Fanning Springs is centrally located to paddle down river to Manatee Springs State Park (7 miles) or to numerous up stream locations. For those who like shorter paddle trips, enjoy exploring the spring run and river surrounding the park. Bring your own craft or canoes and kayaks may be rented from the park's concessionaire.

ADA restrooms are located by the concession stand by the main spring and at the "wayside" area located near highway 19.

Fanning Springs State Park is located near High Springs, Old Town and Trenton

Picnickers can enjoy meals overlooking the beautiful spring area. Pavilions are available for rent for $10 or $15 per day, according to size. Tables are also available on a first come first serve basis. Additional picnicking facilities are available overlooking the Suwannee River at the Riverside area adjacent to the park. These tables are all on a first come first serve basis.
- Nature Trail: A short, half-mile trail that winds through a hardwood hammock and along the Suwannee River; includes interpretive signs about local wildlife.

- Boardwalk Loop: An easy 0.75 mile loop featuring an elevated boardwalk over wetlands with views of Fanning Springs and the river; wheelchair accessible.

- Fort Fanning Historic Park Trail: Connects to nearby historic park via a pedestrian bridge across U.S. Highway 19/98; offers educational displays on Civil War history in Florida.

- Dixie Mainline Bike Path: This multi-use path extends for several miles outside of the state park boundaries into Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge area, offering opportunities for longer hikes or bike rides.

-Suwannee River Greenway at Branford : About six miles long paved rail-trail which connects downtown Branford with greenways in neighboring counties providing scenic view of riverside forests

-Nature Coast State Trail : Extends more than thirty-two miles from Trenton to Cross City passing by historical sites like old train depots

-Bell Springs Long Loop - Approximately four-and-a-half-miles-long hiking route leading upriver from Little Shoals entrance towards Bell springs showcasing diverse flora fauna
Biking enthusiasts can enjoy the 32-mile Nature Coast State Trail. Be aware, it's shared with pedestrians and horse riders.

The trail is paved for smooth cycling but remain cautious of wildlife crossing your path unexpectedly.

Ensure to bring a helmet as safety should always be paramount when biking in natural environments like this one.

Remember that Florida weather can change quickly; pack water and sun protection for hot days or rain gear if needed.

Night riding isn't permitted so plan accordingly to finish before dusk sets in each day.

Always respect other users on the trails by maintaining appropriate speeds and giving right-of-way where necessary.
The park offers diverse birding opportunities with over 80 species, including herons and egrets. Birdwatchers can explore various habitats such as hardwood forests, swamps, and river areas. The site is part of the Great Florida Birding Trail which provides guided tours for enthusiasts.

Area Attractions
Scuba Diving

Open water scuba divers are welcome in the designated swimming area. Divers must have proper certification and are required to register with park staff before entering the water.


Snorkeling in the spring is a refreshing activity on a hot day. Put on your mask and fins and see what lies below the spring water.

Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
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Area Campgrounds
Breezy Acres RV Park
10050 Northeast 20 Avenue
Chiefland, FL
Suwannee River Hideaway Campground
1218 Southeast Highway 346
Old Town, FL
Yellow Jacket RV Resort
55 Southeast 503rd Avenue
Old Town, FL
Otter Springs Park & Campground
6470 Southwest 80th Avenue
Trenton, FL
Nearby Hotels
Well-behaved dogs are welcome at Fanning Springs State Park. They must be kept on a 6-foot leash at all times and can not be left unattended for more than a half-hour. Dogs are not permitted in the cabins, cabin area, buildings, swimming or picnic areas.

Directions from Tallahassee, Florida:
- Start on FL-61 S/S Monroe St.
- Turn right onto W Tennessee St/US 90-W.
- Merge onto I10 West via the ramp to Pensacola.

From Gainesville, Florida:
- Begin at US Highway 441 Southbound towards Ocala
- Take a slight left turn into State Road 26 heading westwards toward Trenton
- Continue straight until you reach Fanning Springs

If coming from Jacksonville, Florida:
- Head south on N Main Street and merge with I95-South through exit number 353B.
- Exit at US1 (exit no.298) towards Bunnell /St Augustine; then take SR20-West.

For those traveling from Miami,Florida :
- Get started by going northward along Interstate highway i75-North .
- Then switch over to Fl91 North or better known as the Floridas Turnpike .

Finally if you are in Orlando ,Florida :
- Drive up north using either of these highways ;Fl408-west or Fl429-north .

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Florida State Parks