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Orlando's Secret Park At Wekiwa Springs

Looking for a break from the theme parks and man made attractions of Orlando? Why not enjoy a piece of natural Florida that is just 20 minutes north of downtown Orlando where you can travel back in time to the Florida of days gone by?  Hidden away in Apopka lies a wilderness wonderland, one that is well-known to Orlando residents, but an unexplored secret to most visitors. That magical place is the 7000 acres of the Wekiwa Springs State Park.

The center piece of the park is the main spring that pumps out 42 million gallons of water every day and the swimming area that features crystal clear water, perfect for snorkeling but a bit on the chilly side for comfortable swimming. The water maintains a temperature of 70 degrees Fahrenheit (that's 21 degrees Celsius) throughout  the year.

The park has approximately 17 miles of trails that are popular for hiking, cycling and horse riding. The trails through Wekiwa Park provide an opportunity to appreciate what Florida used to look like before houses, stores and theme parks took over the landscape.

But it is the waterways that are the biggest drawcard in the park and canoeing is the favorite activity. There are miles of clear river waters with overhanging green canopies to paddle or float down on inflatibles. Start from Canoe Beach at the head of the springs network, paddle down to the bottom and then take a shuttle back to the starting point.

The park is also a popular site for camping and is one of the few Florida State Parks that caters for pets. The park has an  infrastructure that supports all forms and types of camping, ranging from from tents to recreational vehicles. The are also facilities for family, primitive and youth camping.

If central Florida is on your vacation itinerary, then consider a visit to the Wekiwa Springs State Park. Its a wonderful place to just relax and recharge your batteries!

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