Prime 5 Issues to Do Close to Gainesville FL • Genuine Florida

Final Up to date on September 21, 2022

On the subject of the most effective issues to do close to Gainesville FL, our associates at WUCF coated quite a lot of territory on their Gainesville episode of Florida Highway Journey.

There’s actually by no means a scarcity of superior issues to do close to Gainesville FL. As quickly as you may, pack your luggage, get in your automobile, put your seatbelt on and let’s go discover!

Gainesville sketch courtesy of Matheson History Center
Supply: Matheson Historical past Heart

Gainesville is house to the College of Florida, Santa Fe Faculty Educating Zoo, and Kanapaha Botanical Gardens.

Wild Horse at Paynes Prairie State Park in Gainesville

Moreover, there’s Paynes Prairie Protect State Park, a number of world-class museums (Cade Museum, Samuel P. Harn Museum of Artwork), the Matheson Historical past Museum, and so many different fascinating locations to find.

Downtown Gainesville Florida at dusk
Picture credit score: Sean Pavone

On the subject of the greatest eating places in Alachua County, Downtown Gainesville is likely one of the high locations to go. Nevertheless, there are such a lot of nice eating choices on this normal space. We picked our 10 favorites and shared them right here.

Gainesville Community Circus postcard

A go to to Alachua County must be on everybody’s bucket checklist. There’s a lot extra to find concerning the North Central Florida area than meets the attention.

Listed here are the highest 5 issues to do close to Gainesville FL:

1. Make a Splash at a North Florida Springs

Ichetucknee Springs, Fort White
Ichetucknee Springs, Fort White

In case you are within the Gainesville space, then a visit to a Florida spring is a should! Springs are well-liked with nature lovers, younger individuals, households, and retirees. Mainly, anybody craving a chance to discover nice outside actions.

Regardless of which Spring you go to, go early within the day. These Florida gems will attain full capability FAST. Picnic tables are claimed rapidly, too. If you will get away on a weekday, then we extremely advocate you do this.

Rainbow Springs in Dunnellon FL
Rainbow Springs, Dunnellon. Picture credit score: Sean Board

We’ve put collectively a group of our favourite pure springs inside an hour’s drive of Gainesville (North Central Florida). Undeniably a freshwater Spring is an ideal place to chill down from the Florida warmth.

Ichetucknee Springs. Picture credit score Kate Sikes-Weeks.

5 Pure Springs close to Gainesville:

1. Satan’s Den Spring

Devils Den entrance in Williston near Gainesville
Satan’s Den, Williston

Ideas for Visiting Satan’s Den Spring

  • Satan’s Den is privately owned; it’s NOT a Florida State Park. Your Florida State Park annual cross doesn’t work right here.
  • Plan Forward!  In actuality, admittance is by appointment solely. So you should guide on-line earlier than visiting.
  • To order a spot, choose your date and the variety of individuals in your celebration. Make your reservation a minimum of a number of days forward of time. (In the summertime months, the schedule fills up per week or extra out).
  • Nobody underneath 18 is allowed with out a guardian.
  • For legal responsibility causes, this isn’t a spot for sightseeing. Solely individuals paying to scuba dive or snorkel are allowed to take the staircase right down to the Springs. In actual fact, you’re actually not allowed on the grounds until you’re a paying participant.

Location: 5390 NE one hundred and eightieth Ave., Williston, FL 32696 (roughly 33 minutes from Gainesville)

Should you’d like extra details about Satan’s Den, try this text: 5 Issues to Do in Satan’s Den for the Good Journey.

2. Ruth B. Kirby Gilchrist Blue Springs

Swimmers at Gilchrist Blue Springs, High Springs
Gilchrist Blue Springs, Excessive Springs

Ideas for Visiting Ruth B. Kirby Gilchrist Blue Springs State Park

  • That is the smallest of the springs and a favourite of locals. Above all, it’s normally the least crowded of all of the Florida public springs on this space.
  • Campsites are good and shady. Nevertheless, in case you are tenting, bear in mind that you may be sharing a shower home with day guests.
  • Bear in mind! The highway in the direction of the Springs isn’t paved. It may be a bit difficult to drive on particularly if it has been raining rather a lot.
  • Deliver your individual meals and drinks (no alcohol). They’ve a concession stand, however the selections are considerably restricted.
  • Relying in your mobile service supplier, you will have points getting service. It forces you to unplug and calm down.
  • In case you are in search of a good looking ambiance with numerous peace and quiet, then this Florida Spring is the one to go to.

Location: 7450 NE sixtieth St., Excessive Springs, FL 32643 (roughly 44 minutes from Gainesville)

3. Ginnie Springs

Ginnie Springs sign
Ginnie Springs, Excessive Springs

Ideas for Visiting Ginnie Springs

  • Ginnie Springs is privately owned; it’s NOT a Florida State Park. Your Florida State Park annual cross doesn’t work right here.
  • At the moment, this is likely one of the hottest and crowded springs within the space.
  • As a result of it’s privately owned, Ginnie Springs is likely one of the solely springs in Florida that enables alcohol. Should you take pleasure in a cocktail sitting spring-side, that is the Florida Spring for you!
  • Attributable to present river circumstances, kayaks, canoes and paddle board leases usually are not all the time accessible. Plan to lease an inside tube as a back-up.
  • For security functions, put on a life jacket. Visitors might lease a lifejacket freed from cost.
  • Should you enterprise out within the river in snorkel gear, State regulation dictates that you should have a diver’s flag and float with you always. Gear and flags can be found to lease.
  • All issues thought of, they don’t enable pets, together with emotional assist animals at Ginnie Springs.
  • Should you plan to go tenting and need a good campsite, be certain that to reach early to arrange. Campers have to be 18+ years previous.
  • Be sure you name on the day of your go to to verify park hours and for all updates. Issues can range on a day-to-day foundation resulting from capability, climate, and/or any variety of causes (keep in mind it’s privately owned). Telephone quantity: 386-454-7188.

Location: 7300 Ginnie Springs Highway, Excessive Springs, FL 32643 (roughly 45 minutes from Gainesville)

4. Ichetucknee Springs

Photo of Ichetucknee Springs and river, Ft. White
Ichetucknee Springs and river, Ft. White

Ideas for Visiting Ichetucknee Springs

  • If tubing, it’s undoubtedly greatest to lease inside tubes on the park. Don’t hassle bringing your individual. There are restrictions, so it’s simpler to go this route. For rental data, click on right here.
  • Buy a wristband for the tram journey again to the parking space! After feeling relaxed and drained from floating within the Florida solar, a tram journey is an ideal ending. Moreover, the tram hauls your innertube again for you!
  • Go Early! This park is usually at capability at opening time. Guests are inclined to line up on the gate earlier than opening.
  • If canoeing or kayaking, it’s necessary to notice there’s a each day restrict of canoes & kayaks allowed within the space.
  • Should you aren’t early … The park will admit extra guests after others go away. 2 pm is a perfect time when the “first wave” of tourists departs — plus, it nonetheless provides you loads of time to benefit from the park earlier than closing.
  • Pay shut consideration to the posted river journey instances! At instances the present is slower, so it could possibly take longer than standard to drift down the river.
  • Pay shut consideration to which launch space and touchdown you’re coming into. There are two and journey instances can range significantly.
  • Don’t skip Blue Gap Spring! Drive from the parking space on the river to the Spring parking space (it’s not walkable).
  • There may be tenting on the park! Nevertheless, you probably have a camper or RV, then try the privately owned heaps for tenting that house owners lease out (do an Airbnb search). Many have non-public river entrances so that you gained’t have to fret about max capability restrictions.

Location: 12087 S.W. U.S. Freeway 27, Fort White, FL 32038 (roughly 55 minutes from Gainesville)

Need to study extra about Ichetucknee Springs? Try our article: Tube the Ichetucknee River & Expertise Genuine Florida.

5. Rainbow Springs

Swimming area, Rainbow Springs State Park
Swimming space, Rainbow Springs State Park

Ideas for Visiting Rainbow Springs

  • This park fills up quick, particularly on weekends and holidays. When the park is closed, autos might not wait in line or on adjoining roads.
  • What makes this Spring park extraordinarily distinctive for Florida? It has Waterfalls! Man-made, however nonetheless cool!
  • The waterfall viewing areas usually are not all the time open. At the moment, just one is working.
  • The concession space is just open on weekends — Pack a lunch in case you go through the week!
  • Be aware! The water is tremendous clear and the underside seems to be look extra shallow than it truly is.
  • It’s a good suggestion to deliver a pool noddle or put on a life vest.
  • Be sure you name earlier than you go you probably have any questions or need the newest updates. Telephone: 352-465-8555.

Location: 19158 SW 81st Pl Rd., Dunnellon, FL 34432 (roughly 55 minutes from Gainesville)

We wrote an entire story about Rainbow Springs. Test it out: A Go to to Outstanding Rainbow Springs.

In case you’re in search of extra details about our lovely Springs in Florida, listed below are two articles it’s best to learn: Our 15 Favourite Freshwater Florida Springs and Make a Splash at These 14 Pure Waterparks in Florida.

2. Step Again in Time in Micanopy

Historic Micanopy sign

Positioned quarter-hour south of Gainesville, the historic district of Micanopy is the oldest inland city in Florida. The Thrasher Warehouse is house to the Micanopy Historic Museum, the Herlong Mansion, and plenty of historic buildings. Micanopy really affords a glimpse into the lives of early pioneers.

Picture credit score: Michael Warren

Vintage fanatics might be impressed with the gathering of classic items all through the city. It’s an ideal place to decelerate and journey again in time.

Exterior of Old Florida Cafe in Micanopy

Be sure you seize an genuine Cuban sandwich and a fantastic cup of espresso on the Previous Florida Cafe.

Herlong Mansion

Micanopy is certainly a spot to place in your must-visit checklist. If you wish to study extra about Micanopy, try our characteristic story: Micanopy: The City that Time Forgot.

TIP: Once you go to, if you wish to study extra about this quaint, historic Florida city, dial 352-327-9005 in your telephone, then enter the next tour cease quantity and press #.

  • 400# Micanopy Overview
  • 402# Thrasher Warehouse
  • 425# Previous Brick Home
  • 428# Herlong Mansion
  • 433# Every day & Feaster Constructing
  • 435# Franklin/Fontaine Home
  • 437# Banking Firm
  • 449# Episcopal Church
  • 460# Previous Florida Heritage Freeway

3. Discover Waldo! Store on the Waldo Farmer’s & Flea Market

Positioned about 15 miles north of Gainesville, the city of Waldo is primarily recognized at present for the Waldo Farmer’s and Flea Market.

Waldo Farmers and Flea Market with Florida Orange Bird

The 20,000-square-foot market has been in operation for over 40 years and homes lots of of unbiased distributors promoting numerous classic and quirky treasures.

Waldo Farmers and Flea Market boiled and roasted peanuts

Mainly, it’s a enjoyable place to spend just a few hours perusing round. The perfect issues will be discovered right here in case you’re prepared to look! Plus, they’ve recent produce and honest meals in case you work up an urge for food purchasing.

Waldo Florida vintage photo of Opera House

Do you know within the 1870s, Waldo was marketed as a “Winter Playground”? Individuals traveled by railroad to Waldo repeatedly, stayed on the Waldo Lodge, went to the Opera Home and loved every part the town provided.

TIP: The place snug footwear and produce your individual reusable purchasing bag in case you plan to go to the farmer’s and flea market. We did quite a lot of purchasing and wore flip-flops. Plus, we’re not followers of plastic luggage so we maintain reusable luggage in our automobile.

Location: 17805 U.S. 301, Waldo, FL 32694

4. Go to Dudley Farm Historic State Park

Dudley Farm Historic State Park house

In case you are in search of an genuine historic Florida farming expertise, put a go to to Dudley Farm Historic State Park in Newberry in your places-to-go checklist.

Dudley Farm is managed by the Florida State Park companies. This working farm consists of the household farmhouse with authentic furnishings.

The homestead consists of eighteen authentic buildings which were preserved and restored (all constructed between 1880 and 1940). Plus, there are crop fields and livestock. You’ll be able to plow the backyard, pump water, grind corn and feed the chickens.

Horse on Dudley Farm in Newberry FL

The farm was donated to the state in 1983 by Myrtle E. Dudley and was initially bought in 1859 by her grandfather Phillip Benjamin Dudley Sr.

Dudley Farm Historic State Park in Newberry was designated as a Nationwide Historic Landmark on Jan. 13, 2021. The farm acquired this designation for its distinctive skill for example the historical past of owner-operator farms within the southern U.S. within the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

This residing historical past farm is open from 9 am to five pm, Wednesday to Sunday (closed Monday & Tuesday).

TIP: Begin on the Customer Heart and watch the informative 12-minute video about Dudley Farm. Subsequent to the Customer Heart is the Commissary. The Commissary is open from 10 am – 3:30 pm, Wednesday by Sunday.

As well as, handmade gadgets (i.e., quilts, knitted and crocheted gadgets, jellies and wood toys) can be found to buy within the Commissary.

Location: 18730 W. Newberry Highway, Newberry FL 32669

5. Attend a North Florida Competition

Art in Gainesville FL

Town of Gainesville, Alachua County and the encompassing space is chock stuffed with stay music, native artists, meals vans, and different enjoyable particular occasions.

Right here’s an inventory of a number of the festivals and common occasions we advocate attending:

TIP: Try Go to Gainesville’s calendar of occasions at

In conclusion, in case you loved this factor to do close to Gainesville FL weblog, try another enjoyable issues to do on this normal space:


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *