Swim In The Clearest Swimming Holes At This Underrated Florida Park

If you want to enjoy one of Florida's wildest and most pristine rivers then head to Jefferson County. There you'll find the Wacissa Springs County Park where you can paddle through crystal clear water, swim, and spot wildlife. These scenic swimming holes are at the beginning of the Aucilla Wildlife Management Area which provides more opportunities to explore this underrated region.

The headsprings in the park feed the stunning Wacissa River which was awarded the title of an "Outstanding Florida Waterway." In this peaceful area, you will have some of the swamps to yourself. If you really want to get under the skin of this unique wilderness, you can even stay for a night underneath the stars. Don't forget to keep your eyes peeled for the reptiles, amphibians, fish, birds, and aquatic mammals who live here too. For those who love water and wildlife, make sure to add this overlooked spot to your list when planning your next trip to Florida.

Know before you go

Even though the biggest draw for the Wacissa River and park is its wildness, it does mean that you do need to look out for potentially dangerous animals, like alligators. To avoid them, make sure to only swim in the holes when you've checked that there aren't any of these reptiles lurking within them.

Blue Springs is one of the most popular swimming holes so arrive early to beat the crowds and then you can head down the river once it gets busy. It is also much quieter on weekdays than weekends when families visit to cool down or improve their paddling skills. If you want to go on the river then you can bring your own vessel and launch at the public boat ramp in the park. For those who want to stay overnight, there is free camping at the Goose Pasture Group Campground and another group site nearby. They are both closed in gun season but outside of those times they have restrooms, grills, and a pavilion available for visitors to use.

Things to do at Wacissa Springs County Park

The main activity to enjoy at the park besides swimming is exploring the water. It is ideal for kayaking, canoeing, and boating while taking in the natural beauty of this area. There are 15 miles of paddling trails and you can stop at Goose Pasture for a picnic with scenic views if you need a rest. In the swimming holes, you can even snorkel to see what creatures lie just below the surface. This abundant fish life also makes it a good spot for angling.

If your goal is to see wildlife, then go for a paddle at dusk or dawn as this is when many of the creatures are most active. Apart from gators, look out for otters, water snakes, frogs, and turtles. Birdwatchers should bring their binoculars to better view eagles, swallow-tailed kites, wood ducks, coots, mergansers, and a plethora of wading birds. Whatever you do, make sure to add Wacissa Springs County Park to any road trip along Florida's coastline as it is well worth the drive.