Floridians don’t get much love, at least not in Georgia, I’ve noticed. From sports, to fashion, to how redneck the residents are (which is a bit like the pot calling the kettle black), you would wonder why anyone would venture across the border into Gator territory. Well, after spending a month down here, I have to say, it’s a pretty beautiful state, and we’re just now getting to the coast.
The last week we’ve spent exploring the north central portion of the state in and around Ocala National forest. If you were a fan of the novel The Yearling, that’s where it was set. There are expansive scrub pine forests and natural crystal-clear springs where manatees seek refugee during the colder months.
We enjoyed some pleasant hikes, exciting paddles with the manatees, and one rather dubious day on a house boat with our friends from Atlanta (thank you for the hospitality Adam and Mark – we paid for it the next day).
If you’re thinking about an outdoor vacation, don’t overlook Florida’s interior. There is lots to do in Ocala National Forest and if you feel like earning your sea legs, you could rent a house boat to cruise up and down the St. John river like our friends did.