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Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area in Florida

Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area in Florida, 1-5 days Nov-Feb    More Pictures

We like the Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area in the winter in Florida. It is very quiet. It consists of 30,701-acres of reserve, which borders 19 miles of the St. John’s River in eastern Orange County, FL. Native American’s originally named it Tootoosahatchee due to the presence of fowl near the creek, which runs through the northern part of the reserve. The Tosohatchee Reserve consists of many habitats including cypress swamps, cabbage palm hammocks, freshwater marshes, pine flatwoods, and creeks. The reserve is open everyday from 8am to sunset. Fees include $1 for bicyclists and pedestrians and $3 per vehicle.

vanabode author jason odom crossing a footbridge in the tosohatchee wildlife management area of florida


The Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area is home to many migratory and residential birds including herons, egrets, wood storks, ibis, ducks, gallinules, hawks, owls, ospreys, kestrel, turkey and eagles. White-tailed deer, bobcat, otters and alligators can all be spotted here.

Do not be surprised if you see alligators even in the tiny ponds. Endangered flowers can be found within the reserve as well including orchids and hand ferns.

endandered gopher tortoise in florida picture

Picture above shows an endandered gopher tortoise in florida. He crosssed the road back and forth in front of us rather quickly.

shows Vanabode parked on one of the  many parts of 17 miles of tosohatchee  bordering saint johns river

Picture above shows Vanabode parked on one of the many accessible parts of 17 miles of Tosohatchee wildlife management area bordering the Saint Johns River. Here you can launch a boat, swim (if you don't mind the alligators and venomous water moccasins), shoot pictures and camp.

picture of a florida owl in the trees

Hiking, biking, camping, fishing and even horseback riding are all activities enjoyed within the Tosohatchee Reserve. There is plenty of trails to hike, 60 miles total. Some of which could be hiked overnight with primitive camping along the way. If you are a backpacker you may want to look into hiking the Florida National Scenic Trail. The Florida Game and Fresh Water Fish Commission allows limited hunting but only under special permission with license from September to March. Horses are prohibited during hunting season. Along the shoreline of the St. Johns River at the end of Powerline Road and in the two man-made lakes south of S.R. 528, you can access the St. Johns River with a canoe or kayak. However no actual boat launching facilities exist anywhere in the reserve.

baby cypress tree growing from on e of the smaller lakes and ponds found in the tosohatchee

If you want to camp call ahead at (407) 568-5893. Along the Florida National Scenic trail are primitive camping sites, including equestrian camp. Car and RV camping are not available. This is a huge place to explore in central Florida and it can be done cheaply from a Vanabode. Winter is the best time to visit Tosohatchee Wildlife Management Area in Florida. More Tosohatchee pictures

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