This beautiful Spring weather is perfect for some hiking and trail walking along 30A’s scenic natural preserves and dune lakes! There are many great options for hiking near scenic 30A:
Identified as the most pristine piece of coastal property in Florida, this undeveloped area features 1,600 acres of stunning bald cypress swamps, nature trails over mountainous sand dunes and two coastal dune lakes. Topsail Hill Preserve State Park is known for its 25-foot-high sand dunes and 14 unique plant communities. In fact, there are five rare plants in Northwest Florida that only flourish in this preserve.
One of the most widely used paved paths in South Walton is the Timpoochee Trail. Named after Timpoochee Kinnard, the influential Indian Chief of the Euchee Indian tribe, the paved multi-use path winds through 12 beach communities along Scenic Highway 30A, traversing recreational areas, state parks, the state forest, and coastal dune lakes.
This 15,000-acre state forest includes over 27 miles of distinct trails through longleaf pine flat woods, wet prairie, coastal scrub, swamplands and sandhills. Some of the rare species that inhabit this forest include the american kestrel, gopher tortoise, flatwoods salamander, white-topped pitcher plant and the world’s largest population of Curtiss’ sandgrass.
Grayton Beach State Park features pristine landscapes, camping, self-guided nature trails, picnic areas, and is a popular spot for bird watching. The trails wind through the pine flatwoods and around small freshwater ponds, which are a natural habitat for wading birds, water birds and lowland birds. Plovers, terns and gulls are often spotted on trails near the beach. The two nature trails in Grayton Beach State Park include the Flatwoods Trail and the Western Lake Loop located on the north side of Scenic Highway 30A near the main park entrance.
Nestled along side a rare coastal dune lake, visitors will experience many splashes of color from the summer wildflowers, plants, many species of birds and butterflies. Deer Lake Trail is located on the north side of Scenic Highway 30A across from the park entrance.
During the 1800s, Eden Gardens State Park was the home of lumber baron William Henry Wesley and his family. Tour the historic Wesley Mansion or just walk among the moss-draped, ancient live oak trees and extensive landscaped grounds that stretch to the bay. The camellias and azaleas sprinkled throughout the park add color during the spring and summer.
(Information from: South Walton)