Below is a list of the top-rated Hiking Trails in Jacksonville. To help you find the best Hiking Trails located near you in Jacksonville, we put together our own list based on this rating points list.
Jacksonville’s Best Hiking Trails:
The top-rated Hiking Trails in Jacksonville are:
- Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens -a 120 acre of urban woodland with several hiking trails
- Spanish Pond Trailhead -a hiking area through marsh and forest trail
- University Of North Florida Nature Trails -a hiking area with different types of hiking trail located inside the University of North Florida
- Castaway Island Preserve -a protected nature reserve
- Pumpkin Hill Creek Preserve State Park -a nature area good for hiking and water activities
Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens
Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens is an urban woodland consisted of different trails that you will enjoy. Boasting of over 100 cataloged plant species, forested wetlands, and ravine trails, you will feel closer to nature as you engage yourself in the natural system of the area and experience first hand the huge diversity of plants and animals living there.
Managed by the Jacksonville Arboretum & Gardens, Inc., a non-profit entity, no entrance fee is required but a suggested $3 visitor donation to help maintain the grandeur of the area and help protect it.
Lake Loop Trail, Sand Ridge Trail, Jones Creek Trail, Upper Ravine Trail, Lower Ravine Trail, Live Oak Trail, Aralia Trail
“Absolutely beautiful park! Several types of trails for everyone to enjoy! My husband and I love to bring our 2 years old here to explore and have a picnic at the tables!” –Alyssa Mikell
Spanish Pond Trailhead
Reason #84 to visit Timucuan Preserve: to hike the trails at Theodore Roosevelt Area and climb the bird tower. PC:…
Spanish Pond Trailhead is a trail through pine flatwoods and tidal marsh. Deeply embedded in history, this is where Pedro Menéndez de Avilés, a Spanish conquistador and his men of five hundred Spanish soldiers marched and camped before the onslaught on Fort Caroline.
Supervised by Timcuan Ecological and Historic Preserve, this trail can be found across from the entrance of Fort Caroline National Memorial and is a great place to do an enjoyable walk through lush vegetation or canoe through their swamps and marsh.
Nature Watching, Water Activities, Camping
“Ranger Geoff is the best! Thank you for a fantastic history lesson at Fort Caroline. We are very lucky to have Ranger Geoff and Ranger Blair as stewards of our National Parks.” -Yen Weick
University Of North Florida Nature Trails
University Of North Florida Nature Trails is a nature trail that is part of the Eco-Adventure offered by the University of North Florida that is created to impart in people environmental awareness and to educate them further about nature.
Under the University of North Florida’s Department of Recreation and Wellness, this land consisted of hundred of acres of Wild Florida offers an array of trails to choose from. With an abundance of wildlife and dense forests, you would surely enjoy being close to nature and savor its wild beauty.
Goldenrod Trail, Blueberry Trail, Gopher Tortoise Ridge, Big Cyprus Trail, Red Maple Boardwalk
“We took our little granddaughters on this nice, peaceful hike. The trails are safe and well maintained. Make sure you carry a stick in case a snake wants to join you! The trail is around a huge pond where you can catch a glimpse of turtles, alligators, fish, and birds. Wear comfortable shoes.” –Sherri M.
Castaway Island Preserve
Castaway Island Preserve is an estuary found along the Intracoastal Waterway. It is considered to be one of the leading preservation site in Jacksonville. Adjacent to an intricate salt marsh, the surrounding ecosystem with the park’s wide-range boardwalk system is an ideal place to observe wildlife on its natural habitat.
Managed by Timucuan Parks Foundation, this preserve is one of their protected sites to ensure the preservation and enhancement of the natural areas in Jacksonville for the consumption and enjoyment of the general public.
Wildlife Observation, Hiking, Canoeing, Kayaking, Fishing
“Great dock areas with the marsh. Plenty of wildlife critters. Neat and clean and fairly quiet local for families and dog families.” –Tim M.
Pumpkin Hill Creek Preserve State Park
Pumpkin Hill Creek Preserve State Park is one of the largest remaining areas in Jacksonville that is bordering coastal uplands. Nestled between the city of Jacksonville and its different beaches, this park connects everyone to a large ecosystem of marsh, lakes, flatwoods, and sandhills. Different protected wildlife can be found here as well and the area is considered sanctuary to threatened American alligator and endangered wood stork.
Under the safekeeping of Florida State Park, this trail is perfect for different kinds of adventures and activities that would immerse you further into nature and teach you to appreciate the beauty of the wild.
Bicycling, Geo-Seeking, Paddling, Wildlife Viewing, Birding, Hiking, Picnicking, Fishing, Horseback Riding, Walking and Running
“This place is great! The staff is super friendly and always ready to answer any question and help if needed. The jump area is super fun, with different options for all ages. We go on Toddler Thursday with our littles and have a blast running around like crazy people.” –Will M.
David Atkins is the senior editor for Kev’s Best. David has been working as a journalist for nearly a decade having published pieces in many print and digital publications including the Argus Leader and the Huffing Post. David is based in St Louis and covers issues affecting his city and state. When he’s not busy in the newsroom, David enjoys backpacking.