Ichetucknee Springs River
Santa Fe River
Ocean Pond
Suwannee River
Parks
Swimming Pools

In it, on it, under it - if it has to do with water, Lake City is where you want to be. Lake City and Columbia County are the hub for the nation's most outstanding canoeing, tubing and diving venues. Being the best has earned this area the title "Freshwater Recreation Capital of America". Here's why Florida's Gateway City can make this claim: More than 100 springs are located within a 50 mile radius of Lake City, including world-famous Ichetucknee Springs and the cave diving mecca of Ginnie Springs.

Columbia County is bordered by the scenic Santa Fe River on the south and the legendary Suwannee River on the northern border. Further establishing the area as a freshwater haven are dozens of lakes within the borders of Lake City, along with Olustee Beach at Ocean Pond, and inside the Osceola National Forest.

diver
Head Springs, Ichetucknee

In addition to canoeing, tubing and diving, the area's rivers and lakes provide excellent opportunities for fishing, recreational boating, skiing, jet skiing, bird watching and camping.

 
Ichetucknee Springs River
Ichetucknee Springs State Park
SW Elim Church Rd
Fort White FL, 32038
386-497-2511

The seven-mile long Ichetucknee Springs River is the nation's most pristine waterway with depths reaching up to 40 feet. The river is fed by nine named springs. Ichetucknee is a first magnitude spring discharging more than 240 million gallons of crystal clear water into the river daily at a constant 72 degrees. The river is a favorite for tubing enthusiasts with more than 200,000 visitors annually.
Ichetucknee Springs State Park: The crystalline Ichetucknee River flows six miles through shaded hammocks and wetlands before it joins the Santa Fe River. In 1972, the head spring of the river was declared a National Natural Landmark by the U. S. Department of the Interior. From the end of May until early September, tubing down the river is the premier activity in the area. In addition to tubing, visitors can enjoy picnicking, snorkeling, canoeing, swimming, hiking, and wildlife viewing. October through March scuba diving is available in the Blue Hole only (you must be cave certified). White-tailed deer, raccoons, wild turkeys, wood ducks and great blue herons can be seen from the river. Picnic areas, equipped with tables and grills, are available throughout the park. A full-service concession offers food, refreshments, and outdoor products from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Tubes plus snorkeling and diving equipment can be rented from private vendors outside the park located four miles northwest of Fort White, off State Roads 47 and 238.
Admission Fee (no river use)
$5.00 per vehicle (limit 8 people per vehicle)
Single car occupant - $3.00 swimming, picnicing and hiking.
Motorcycle (one or two people) $3.00
Canoe Fee
$5.00 per person year round
Diving Fee
$10.00 per person October 1 - March 31 (Blue Hole at North Entrance) must be cave or cavern certified - no solo diving.
Tubing
North Entrance - Summer Season (Saturday before Memorial Day through Labor Day) $5.00 per person (children 5 and under are free)
South Entrance - Summer Season (Saturday before Memorial Day through Labor Day) $5.00 per person (children 5 and under are free)
South Entrance - Off Season (Begins the Tuesday after Labor Day thru the Friday before Memorial Day) $5.00 per vehicle (limit 8 people per vehicle)
No food, beverages or tobacco allowed on river.


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Ocean Pond
Ocean Pond hosts more than 100,000 visitors annually. The two-mile wide lake has a shallow, sandy beach and has facilities for fishing, picnicking, hiking, restrooms, grills and sheltered tables. Ocean Pond is a favorite for boaters and for skiing enthusiasts. A public boat launch and a 50-site campground is also available. Ocean Pond is located within the Osceola National Forest and is just two miles away from the Olustee Battlefield Park, site of Florida's most important Civil War battle in 1864. The Olustee Battle Festival and Re-enactment is held annually in Lake City. The 1999 festival and re-enactment will be held the weekend of Feb. 12-14.

In addition to the vast array of water adventures available near Lake City and Columbia County, the area also provides great opportunities to visit historic and museums, along with dozens of exciting antique shops.

Lake City and Columbia County are known as "Florida's Gateway." The county features more than 35 reasonably priced motels and 13 campgrounds.




Ocean Pond
Po Box 70
Olustee FL, 32070
386-752-2577
Boating, skiing, hiking, swimming, fishing, picnicking and camping are available. Admission is $2.00 per car. Camping $8.00 per site. Boat ramps are available.
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Parks
Ichetucknee Springs State Park 386-497-2511
O’Leno State Park
386-454-1853 Full facility camping, picnic area, nature trail, swimming, youth camp
Peacock Springs Rec. Area
386-776-2194
River Rise Preserve 386-454-2009
Osecola National Forest 386-752-2577
Ginnie Springs
386-454-2202
Ocean Pond/Campground
386-752-2577

 
Santa Fe River
The Santa Fe River, which covers a total distance of 60 miles, is an idyllic setting for a large variety of water adventures, including fishing, recreational boating and canoeing.

Adventure Outpost
815 NW SantaFe Blvd
High Springs FL, 32643
386-454-0611
Outfitters and guide service. Rentals of canoes and kayaks. Catering available. Groups or individuals. Guided and unguided tours. Pre-selected packages of 1 1/2 to S hour trips are available.
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Ginnie Springs
7300 NE Ginnie Springs Rd
High Springs FL, 32643
386-454-2202
Canoe, tube, snorkeling rentals. Full service diver center and air station. Dive equipment rentals. Diving instruction. Bathhouses & Camping.

Groups and individuals Contact Rhonda Johnson, P (386) 454-2202, TF 1-800-874-BS71, F (386) 454-3201

Admission is $7 for adults, $3 for children.

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O'Leno State Park
Rt. 2 Box 1010
High Springs FL, 32643
386-454-1853
Canoe rentals, camping and cabins are available. Swimming, canoeing, fishing and hiking are available. The park is adjacent to the Santa Fe River and has in excess of 6,000 acres. Admission is $3.25 per vehicle. Contact the park at (386) 454-1853 for availability of camping & cabins. Groups welcome
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Santa Fe Canoe Outpost
P.O. Box 592
High Springs FL, 32655
386-454-2510
Canoes, kayaks, floatation devices, paddles, maps and parking. Catering and lodging packages available. Groups & individuals. Contact Jim Wood, (386) 454-2050, (386) 454-2510, (riverise.com/canoe.htm),
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Nature Quest
Po Box 2999
Lake City FL, 32056
386-755-5252
Canoe and kayak guided river trips. Groups of 20 or more only. Aluminum canoes, ocean kayaks, lifejackets, paddles and lunch available. Contact Jim or Tere Free, P (386) 755-5252, F (386) 758-5821,
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Suwannee River
On the northern boundary of Columbia County, the Suwannee River has the only Class 3 shoals in Florida .

American Canoe Adventures
10315 S.E. 141st Blvd
White Springs FL, 32096
386-397-1309
Canoeing, kayaking and rafting on Suwannee River. Trips for individual or groups are available. Catering and lodging available. Whitewater rafting available depending on river height. Tent campground on site. Contact Wendell Hannum, p (386) 397-1309, TF 1-800-624-8081
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Swimming Pools
Family Aquatic Center
602 West St. Johns St.
Lake City FL, 32025
386-755-8195
Recreational swimming pool. Swimming instruction available. Annual memberships and daily swim fees.
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