Where the “Wild” Things Are
Driving into the park was quite the experience! That feeling that you have truly left the city life behind in taking a left off the main drag and entered a unique space (aka the swamp). Such a special place to explore and adventure within. You just want to take your time here and look for the special and the unique as well as the wild and the exotic!
Lettuce Lake Regional Park. A 240-acre park just outside the city limits of Tampa. The park opened in 1982.
Location: 6920 East Fletcher Avenue, Tampa, Florida. Admission: $2 per car. Hours: Spring/Summer 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Fall/Winter 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Do not forget to pack!
- Good walking shoes.
- Sunscreen and cool clothing.
- Bug spray.
A Hardwood Swamp Forest
- Visitor Center (an interpretive center with natural history and wildlife exhibits). Education programs available.
- The Audubon Resource Center (ARC) is operated by the Tampa Audubon Society in the visitor center.
- Trails and boardwalks – walking, hiking, biking.
- Picnic areas with picnic tables as well as shelters (some shelters are reservable). Barbecue grills.
- Fitness course.
- Fishing with a dock/pier.
- Canoe/kayak launch with rentals.
- River access.
- Birdlife and wildlife watching.
Pretty much something for everyone that visits!
I loved exploring the fauna and flora as well as the birdlife and wildlife from the boardwalk! The boardwalk is 3,500 feet with an observation tower. Pets are not permitted on the boardwalk.
On the Boardwalk
Water is Key to this Environment/Habitat
More than half of the park’s property lies in the natural floodplain of the Hillsborough River. A natural storage reservoir for floodwater and improves water quality, which acts like a biological filter to remove excess nutrients from the water. Due to the recent rains and flooding some of the boardwalk was under water. The water was pretty clear and could see water plants, bugs, fishes, etc.
Gator(s) – Plural
This sign needs to say, “Beware of Alligators”!
Can you spot the gator?
Taking a Nap
This one was just hovering in the water.
Popping the head up.
Swimming towards the people on the boardwalk.
A Favorite Photo (Photos by RSheridan)
Here’s To Exploring Natural Environments – Enjoy!