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BellaOnline's Florida Editor

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Northern Florida

The northern part of Florida contains many charms.

Civil War Sites of North Florida star
Although Florida was not a major Civil War battleground state, several minor battles were fought here. This article describes the largest of these battles and the North Florida sites at which they took place.

Gainesville’s Unique State Parks star
Gainesville is home to 2 unique state Parks: Devil's Millhopper Geological State Park and San Felasco Hammock Preserve State Park. Devil's Millhopper is a large sinkhole with a boardwalk that descends to its bottom. San Felasco SP contains trails for hiking, off-road biking, and equestrians.

Gainsville-Hawthorne State Trail star
Cycle, hike, or skate your way through significant historic and natural areas along the Gainesville-Hawthorne State Trail. This 16.5-mile-long, asphalt-paved trail is rated one of the top ten Florida biking trails.

Ichetucknee Springs State Park star
Ichetucknee Springs State Park is a popular place to tube on a hot summer day or to paddle on a cool one. You can also swim, snorkel, scuba dive, hike, or picnic. Find out what makes this park so special.

Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park star
Visiting Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park near Gainesville should appeal to those interested in history, particularly those who like their history with a literary connection. Tours of the Rawlings home are available for a nominal fee during the months of October through July.

O’Leno State Park star
O'Leno State Park in High Springs is one of the 9 Florida state parks built by the CCC in the 1930s. It offers primitive and developed camping, historical information and artifacts, hiking and cycling trails, picnicking, and fishing, swimming, and canoeing opportunities on the Santa Fe River.

Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park star
Just 10 miles from Gainesville, Paynes Prairie Preserve is unique among Florida state parks. It has an interesting history and geology, as well as herds of American bison and Spanish horses. It contains 30 miles of trails for hikers, cyclists, and equestrians. A full-service campground is available.

Suwannee River State Park star
Suwannee River State Park is located at the confluence of the Withlacoochee River North and the Suwannee. Because it's on the Suwannee River Wilderness Trail, it's a great place for paddlers to camp. The park also offers hiking and historical interest.

The Santa Fe River star
The Santa Fe River, a tributary of the Suwannee, is a geologically interesting stream and a popular water recreation destination. Multiple springs along the lower Santa Fe add clear water to the river and provide opportunities for swimming, snorkeling, and SCUBA diving.

The Suwannee River star
The Suwannee River, made famous by Stephen Foster's song "Old Folks at Home," is a federally designated wild river. It is a beautiful river to paddle, particularly in its upper and middle sections, with many places available for overnight stops.

Troy and Lafayette Blue Springs star
Troy Spring and Lafayette Blue Spring are 1st-magnitude springs along the Suwannee River and are surrounded by state park land. Their 72-degree waters invite swimmers in for a dip, but other recreational activities are also available.

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