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Myakka River State Park: The Haunting Beauty of Florida

Florida is known for its beautiful beaches, but there are some equally stunning views to be found in the state's interior. One of these places is Myakka River State Park which boasts an array of fascinating wildlife and numerous recreational activities for visitors.

This blog post will take you on a fascinating tour through this picturesque state park and share with you all its natural beauty. So read on to discover more about this haunting beauty of Florida.

A Brief History

In the 1930s, the early American natives around Sarasota County acknowledged the Myakka River as a priceless part of their culture. For this reason, they worked to develop one of the most popular Florida state parks across the river. From 1934 to 1941, the Florida Park Service and National Park Service aided the Civilian Conservation Corps in constructing facilities and establishing the park. In 1942 Myakka River State Park was officially unveiled and opened for public visits.

Most of the old facilities in Myakka River State Park are in perfect condition and still in use today. In 1985, the State Legislature designated the Myakka River as one of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers in the United States. This is the first river in Florida to be designated with this special status. This designation status provides 24/7 management and preservation of the 34-mile portion of the Myakka River within Sarasota County.

Interesting Facts about Myakka River

Did you know that Myakka's name comes from the Native American word for "Big Waters'' and it’s also a name for a certain soil in Florida that isn’t found in any other state? The park was established over 75 years ago and had more than 5 miles of coastline on the Gulf Coast. It also features one of Florida’s last old-growth pine forests.

Many people visit the park every year to enjoy its many natural wonders and attractions. However, you might not know these interesting facts about Myakka River State Park:

  • The area’s first known inhabitants were Native Americans from the Calusa tribe who built mounds in the area as far back as 500 A.D.

  • In 1967, it was designated an "Outstanding Florida Water" by the state legislature for its outstanding water quality, recreational value, and environmental importance.

  • More than 20 miles of trails run through swamps, marshes, and forests full of wildlife like alligators.

  • According to a local legend, hundreds of people attempted suicide in Myakka River State Park in the 1950s. Most people who enlisted in the army at the beginning of the Vietnam War came here to end their lives.

  • The scariest thing in this haunting beauty of Florida is that the dead people’s ghosts are known for roaming around the park. Residents believe that these ghosts still exist to this day and look like ordinary living humans, particularly young children.

  • Those who visit the park to do hiking or camping encounter the lost souls across the trail. However, according to those who have encountered the shades, you can’t determine if it’s a real ghost until you see the stranger leave the trail and suddenly walk through tree trunks and disappear in thin air!

Exciting Things to do At Myakka River State Park

Myakka River State Park is a place of beauty, mystery, and wonder. The park features lush green forests, beautiful lakes and rivers, clear blue water springs that rise to the surface like sparkling diamonds in the sun, alligators basking lazily on logs or disappearing into dark waters with barely a ripple. It also has rare plants found nowhere else on earth. All these are just a few of many things you’ll enjoy watching at this park in The Sunshine State.

This park is also a perfect spot for outdoor enthusiasts since it has enough space to do a wide range of fun activities. There’s never a dull moment at this hauntingly beautiful park with exciting activities like hiking, camping, canoeing, kayaking, swimming, birdwatching, and biking! The Myakka River winds through the park allowing visitors to enjoy all that nature has to offer. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing getaway or want to have some fun with friends or family, there’s something for everyone here.

Reasons to Visit Myakka State Park

The Myakka State Park is a beautiful place perfect for nature lovers and anyone who enjoys being surrounded by wildlife. There are so many reasons to visit the park that it would be hard to list them all! Here are just 10 of the many reasons to visit this place:

  • The Myakka River State Park is home to over 100 animal species, including white-tailed deer, bobcats, alligators, armadillos, otters, raccoons, and more.

  • It has over 30 miles of hiking trails and biking trails, offering a diverse set of ecosystems and experiences for hikers and cyclists.

  • You can see different types of vegetation such as longleaf pine Flatwoods and scrubby Flatwoods forests.

  • You’ll get an opportunity to see some of the most unusual, historic cabins, such as the 5-rustic log cabins constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps.


Florida is home to many beautiful state parks, but Myakka River State Park may be the most breathtaking of them all. This park has a diverse ecosystem, hundreds of different species, and fun activities for everyone. If you're looking for an excellent getaway in Florida, Myakka River State Park is your spot.

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