Myakka State Park

Member Rating 4 out of 5 by thecopes on January 11, 2003

Myakka State Park is located about 12 miles east of Siesta Key on State Route 72. This is the nicest and most interesting state park in the Sarasota area and is not to be missed!

The cost is $4/car and is open every day from 8am to sunset. You enter on a scenic winding road that eventually ends up at Upper Myakka Lake. Along the way we made numerous stops to look at birds and gators. They are everywhere! Our son was fascinated by the huge gators in the Myakka River and shot a lot of video tape as they slowly swam near us.

At the lake, we boarded the "Gator Gal", one of the world''s largest airboats. Our knowledgable guide pointed out all sorts of birds and, of course, gators with the right combination of folksiness and cornball humor.

Cost of the tour is $8 for adults and $4 for kids. There is also a tram tour which can be combined with the boat tour for a discount. There''s a nice shaded picnic area at the boat launch as well as a small gift shop and snack bar.

There are almost 40 miles of hiking trails in the park. Our favorite was the Boylston nature trail. The 45-minute hike is highlighted by a climb up the 75-foot canopy walkway tower and walking across the suspension bridge high in the trees.

Check out the excellent Florida State Parks web site for Myakka at this link.

Myakka River State Park
13208 State Road 72
Sarasota, Florida, 34231
(941) 361-6511

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