Blue Springs Park FloridaDay Trips . Orange City
Blue Springs Park Florida
My son and I were looking for another place to spend a day in November of 2016. I jumped onto Roadtrippers and found Blue Springs State Park was close enough to be a day trip. It was really more of a half day trip as it was fairly close to home.
With the natural resources and historic house in this park, this qualified as a school field trip for my son as he was homeschooled. My son and I both learned a lot at the park and we saw so many neat things!
How cool that we saw the alligator resting on a log just behind a turtle doing the same. We saw so many manatees! And of course we saw some pretty cool birds.
It was such a nice day walking the nature trail next to the springs and looking at all of the different animals and wildlife that this park offers.
We also got to visit the Thursby House which I always enjoy. My son isn’t as fascinated by these old historic houses as I am but he still enjoys walking through them.
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About Blue Springs Park Florida
Timacuan Indians occupied the land around Blue Springs for hundreds of years. Food, clothing, shelter, materials for tools and weapons were all provided by the spring run, river, and surrounding swamps and uplands in this area. A common food source, snails, was gathered from the sandbars and over the centuries a massive mound was formed from the discarded shells.
On January 4, 1766, John Bartran, a prominent British botanist, rowed his boat past sunning alligators into the clear waters of Blue Spring while exploring the St. Johns River for valuable resources. Most of the Indians ended up being driven southward or killed by the mid-1800s as pioneer settlers took their place.
Blue Spring became a State Park in 1972 after Jacques Cousteau filmed The Forgotten Mermaids episode.
The park offers a self-guided boardwalk which leads folks through a lush hammock to the spring. While it’s a great area for swimming and kayaking or canoeing, the spring plays a vital role in the survival of the manatee, one of Florida’s most beleaguered residents. Manatees gather at the spring during the cooler months of the year and can be seen from the observation platform. The manatees leave the colder waters of the St. Johns River from November through March for the safety of the 72-degree spring.
The park is located at 2100 W French Ave, Orange City, FL 32763. Hours of operation are 8am to sunset, daily. It costs only $2 to get in.
We didn’t make a Roadtrippers itinerary for this trip because it was the only place we planned to go for the day. I did use the Roadtrippers software to find and pick something to do though.
If you ever find yourself in or around Orange City, Florida, this is one of the top places I would recommend you visit. Our precious manatees aren’t animals that can be seen all over the country and this is a fantastic place to observe them.
Have you been there? I’d love to hear what you thought of it. What did you think of the manatees? Did you see any babies?
Please drop a few lines in the comments box below and let me know how your visit went.
In the meantime, safe travels!
P.S. If you happen to use travel journals, be sure to check out the travel journal I created for my future Orlando Day Trips.
Written by Kris M.
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