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Alafia River State Park

14326 CR 39 S. Lithia, Florida 33547

Phone: 813-672-5320
Fax: 813-672-5225
Park Manager: Coy Helms

Florida State Campgrounds
Reservations 1-800-326-3521

Alafia River State Park opened to the public in February 1998. The park consists of over 6,000 acres with approximately 12 miles of shoreline along the South Prong Alafia River. The land was formerly used for phosphate mining and was donated to the Florida State Parks in 1996. As a relatively new addition to the Florida State Parks, Alafia River State Park offers some of Florida's unique recreational opportunities. The Park offers off road bicycling, horseback riding, hiking, fishing, camping, picnicking, bird watching, canoeing and kayaking. Eight distinct natural communities in addition to ruderal and developed areas are present at Alafia River State Park, they are; scrub, xeric hammock, floodplain swamp, baygall, bottomland forest, upland mixed forest hydric hammock, and blackwater stream.


Hours of Operation
8 a.m. until sunset, 365 days a year.

Driving Directions
Coming from the North (Tampa) Take I-75 south to State Road 60, head east approximately 12 miles to County Road 39. Go south on County Road 39 approximately 13 miles until you reach the entrance to the park located on the left side of roadway.

Coming from the South (Sarasota). Take I-75 north to U.S. 301. Go north on U.S. 301 to County Road 674. Go east on County Road 674 to County Road 39. Go north on County Road 39 5 miles until you reach the entrance of the park on the right side of roadway.

With unique topography that offers some of the most radical elevation changes in Florida, the Alafia off- road bicycling trails are the most challenging in the area. There are three major loops - BLACK LOOP is very technical with steep drops and strenuous climbs and is for the advanced rider. BLUE LOOP, Requires the skills of an intermediate rider on short sections. GREEN LOOP, the easiest of the trails, but still challenging, for experienced beginners. Helmets are required on the trails. Trails are indicated by markers with colored symbols on them. There are two sublevels of the BLACK LOOPS identified by a differing number of black diamonds; one diamond is an advanced trail, if you see two diamonds it is an expert level trail. The trails at Alafia River State Park were constructed and are maintained by volunteers from the Southwest Association of Mountain Bike Peddlers (SWAMP). A trail map is available on their web site at Southwest Association of Mountain Bike PedalersThe SWAMP Mountain Bike Club provides a once a month guided trail ride. The club also has a volunteer workday the first Saturday of each month. For more information regarding club and activities, you can visit their web site at Southwest Association of Mountain Bike Pedalers. Or call the Swamp hotline at (813) 689-5109

Canoeing and Kayaking are a popular activities in the Alafia River and the reclaimed lakes. Currently Alafia River State Park does not offer canoe rentals.

Alafia River State Park offers numerous lakes for fishing. Bass, bluegill and catfish are among the fish that you may catch. Catch and Release is recommended for Large Mouth Bass. A fishing license is required for all freshwater fishing for people 16 and older. Please go to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission web site and get your fishing license on-line.

Full Facility Camping
Alafia River State Park currently offers camping in our new 30-site campground with facilities. Water and 50 amp electrical service is available at each site.
Pets are welcome.

Horse Trails
Riders can enjoy a relaxing day of approximately 20 miles of equestrian trails. The horse trails are well marked and wind around lakes, over hills and through wooded areas. The blue trail is a perimeter loop, the white trail runs north and south, the green trail runs east and west, and the yellow trail is an island loop. The equestrian trails would not have been possible without the assistance and dedicated volunteers of the Triple B Riding Club. For further information on the Triple B Riding Club visit their web site at Triple B Riding Club.

You can enjoy a peaceful picnic lunch with a beautiful view. There is also a playground available for the children.

Wildlife Viewing
Wildlife viewing is possible on all the trails, the picnic area, from the many lakes and the Alafia River so bring your binoculars.