O’Leno State Park and Its Civilian Conservation Corps Legacy

One of Florida’s first state parks, O’Leno State Park was first developed by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s. The park is located along the banks of the scenic Santa Fe River, a tributary of the Suwannee River, and features sinkholes, hardwood hammocks, river swamps and sandhills. As the river courses through the park, …

Day Trip Idea: Florida’s Citrus History at Gainesville’s Matheson History Museum, Through 8/26/16

Although our Natural North Florida region is no longer an important player in Florida’s citrus industry, there’s still lots of history and images to remind us how valuable “liquid gold” was to the area in past decades.  As “cooler” weather crept northward, freezes killed many commercial groves, and only a few remain, mostly near lakes …

Small Town Escape: Follow That Dream Down Highway 40 to Yankeetown, Florida

If you’re driving north or south on US19/98 and find yourself in the village of Inglis, near the highway’s intersection with the Withlacoochee River, be sure to turn west on SR40, locally known as “Follow That Dream Parkway”.    Yes, Elvis was there in 1961 filming Follow That Dream, one of his most successful movies, putting …

Grace Manor Bed and Breakfast, in Historic Greenville, Florida

    Before I extol the beauty and comfort of Grace Manor B&B, a few words about Greenville.  Located between Monticello and Madison on US90, Greenville was an early rail hub for a booming forest products industry.  In fact, it was at one time a larger town than either Monticello or Madison, the Madison County …

The Best of Bradford County

Located just north of Gainesville, Bradford County is home to Starke, FL, a haven for nature lovers and history buffs. While the county’s forests and woodland areas make its rustic terrain the perfect camping destination, its historical monuments and landmarks attract visitors of all kinds. In order to experience the best of what Bradford County …

The Historic Heritage Roads and Must-Sees of Jefferson County

History is quintessential to Floridians. It’s deeply rooted in Florida’s soil, and has inspired much of the state’s architecture, literature and lifestyle. Many buildings constructed during the 19th and early 20th centuries still stand today and hold significant cultural value on a local, state and national level. Here’s a one-day-trip guide highlighting a famous canopy …

Small Town Escape: Newberry in Western Alachua County

Many consider Newberry to be a “suburb” of busy Gainesville, the county seat of Alachua County, Florida.  Located at the crossroads of US27 and SR26, it seems Newberry is often overlooked by folks traveling through the downtown.   Newberry’s official Main Street is US27, but it’s along east/west SR26 (Newberry Road/University Avenue if you’re heading west …

Small Town Escape: Alachua, the Main Street of Natural North Florida

Don’t be fooled by all the new development, gas stations and fast food outlets when you exit I-75 at Exit #399, US441.  You’re in the town of Alachua (pronounced Al-ach-u-way) in rural Alachua County (pronounced Al-ach-u-wah).  And you’re in a real gem of a Natural North Florida town. The restoration of downtown Alachua is impressive, …

Visit A Natural North Florida Wonder–Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park in Gainesville

Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park near Gainesville, is a bowl-shaped cavity 120 feet deep leads down to a miniature rain forest. Small streams trickle down the steep slopes of the limestone sinkhole, disappearing through crevices in the ground. Lush vegetation thrives in the shade of the walls even in dry summers. A significant geological formation, …

Take A Walking Tour of Historic Micanopy in Alachua County, FL

Founded in 1822, Micanopy, FL is the oldest inland settlement in the state.  And it’s still an interesting place to spend a day, just walking and shopping in the many antique and collectable shops found there.  Located about 15 miles south of Gainesville, Micanopy is located between two prominent prehistoric lake beds, Paynes Prairie and …