One of the best parts of Florida Caverns State Park is its Caverns Trail System, an interconnected group of nature trails that surround the big show cave. Most folks don’t step off that paved path and into the forest, but for those who do, a landscape like no other awaits.
The trail system includes seven short hiking trails on limestone bluffs above the floodplain of the Chipola River. If you’re heading to the park to hike, start with the Floodplain Trail at the far corner of the parking area. If you’re doing the cave tour first (highly recommended), it’s harder to do the outer loop without backtracking on yourself. One of the delights of this trail system is Tunnel Cave, the only place in Florida where a hiking trail intentionally goes through a cave.
Length: 1.5 mile outer loop
Type: Loops with cross-trails
Fees / Permits: State park entrance fee
Bug factor: Moderate
There are restrooms at the interpretive center where the cave tour starts. Don’t miss the tour! It’s an extra fee above state park admission but well worth the 45-minute walk through underground wonders in the only public show cave in Florida.