5 Holiday Hiking trails everyone in SWFL should try
Greek philosopher Hippocrates once said, “Walking is a man’s best medicine.” Anyone familiar with our team at EnSite knows we could not agree more! While we may not have the elevation changes of the Rocky Mountains or the forests of the Pacific Northwest, our little corner of Florida is still full of challenging and visually delightful hiking trails. With Southwest Florida’s mild winter just beginning, now is the best time to get out and explore! Below are five local hiking spots to get you into nature.
This is a place for hikers to immerse themselves in the Big Cypress Swamp without getting their feet wet. With a simple 4.5-mile loop trail as well as 12 total miles of trails, either by foot or bicycle, this easily accessible area is a stellar venue for exploring our local scenery.
Located just on the edge of Fort Myers, this 1.4-mile trek through the slough is a great destination for an impromptu excursion. Its wide boardwalks are perfect for walkers and wheelchairs alike. On most days, visitors can enjoy the company of green herons or alligators as they traverse the peaceful setting.
While this park is slightly north of what many consider Southwest Florida, we would be remiss if we excluded it from our list. It features one of the most expansive trail systems in our area with 39 total miles. The Myakka hiking trail is the longest loop trail in a Florida State Park.
Hikers are allowed to camp overnight, making the park ideal for weekend getaways.
These trails are not nearly as accessible as some of the others on this list, but once you make it to them, you’re in for a treat. Visitors must arrive by boat to tackle the 6.5 miles of trails on this secluded Island State Park. Meandering through an old village and at times extending to the shoreline, the trails on Cayo Costa are truly world-class. For an extended adventure, consider spending the night in one of the available cabins or tent pads. (Make sure to book early, as spots fill up fast.)
On the north side of the Caloosahatchee River lies the 768-acre Caloosahatchee Regional Park. It features four interconnecting trails that span 3.4 miles total. Coupled with a variety of campground spaces, the park is a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of season.
These five places are just the start when it comes to exploring the outdoors here in Southwest Florida. We encourage you to check out FloridaHikes.com to see all the hiking and biking options. Hope to see you on the trail!