Split Oak ForestCurrently Open
- Address: Clapp Simms Duda Rd, Orlando, FL 32832, United States
- Timings: 24-hrs Details
- Phone: +1-4072546840
- Time Required: 03:00 Hrs
- Tags: Forest, Park, Wildlife Park, Lake, Nature
About Split Oak Forest, Orlando
Orlando is surrounded by picturesque spaces that offer rejuvenation and recluse from an otherwise busy city of Orlando. The Split Oak Forest Mitigation Park is a nature’s haven that surrounds two lakes—Lakes Hart and Mary Jane—and also a county park, Moss Park. The park has been interestingly named after its giant, 200-year old oak tree that was split about 50 years ago and continues to grow even till today. Full of wild trails to walk down on and varied terrain, this attraction makes up for one of the important attractions of Orlando.
Split Oak Forest Information
- There are two viewing platforms/overlooks along the hiking trail - one on the South Trail and one on the Lake Loop overlooking Bonnet Pond.
Split Oak Forest Ticket Prices
- Entry is free.
How To reach Split Oak Forest by Public Transport
- Rent a car from city centre.
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Things to Know Before Visiting Split Oak Forest
2.23% of people who visit Orlando include Split Oak Forest in their plan
10 AM - 11 AM
29.58% of people start their Split Oak Forest visit around 10 AM - 11 AM
People usually take around 3 Hrs to see Split Oak Forest
91.56% of people prefer to travel by car while visiting Split Oak Forest
Split Oak Forest Map
Split Oak Forest Trips
Split Oak Forest, Orlando Reviews
Lovely well maintained trails, lots of nature and animals abound. During my most recent hike we spotted 2 deer that jumped across the path in front of us as well as small animal tracks and more birds and butterflies than I could count. Saw giant yellow swallowtail butterflies, mockingbirds and sand cranes to name a few. Will be back!
Don't start at the South entrance in the middle of a hot summer day, unless you want the real Florida/Outback experience, bugs and all. I did just that, but I look forward to going to the Moss Park entrance on a cool morning or evening.
Trail markers are very confusing if you start at the opposite side of the park on the trailhead but still had some thick mossy oak which was awesome and a change up with the swamp towards the end. Once you enter the park too the whole area is well maintained with restroom facilities, picnic areas, and recreation areas. The lake Mary Jane is also gorgeous and ginormous with a beautiful boardwalk dock out into it!!
Split Oak has some of the most well preserved and high quality native central Florida habitats in the Orlando area, including pine flatwoods, cypress dome swamps, sawgrass marsh, oak hammock, and even scrub. This is due to the great efforts the FWC has put into maintaining this park over the last ~25 years via methods such as prescribed burns and manual invasive species removal. The high quality is also a result of how well the park has been protected since its inception as a wildlife environmental area and as a mitigation bank. There are miles of trails with small connectors as well so you can take a different route each time if you like a little variety. As a local biologist and nature photographer, this park is my absolute favorite to visit and hike around in the Orlando area. There is an abundance of wildlife including songbirds, owls, reptiles, amphibians, mammals, and a great diversity of invertebrates and flowering plants.
I was pleasantly surprised. I was expecting to walk on a difficult to navigate sandy road with very little tree cover. I only did the upper green loop and center trail (about 70 minutes walking somewhat briskly) but plan to return to explore the lower loop. I realize many may not like the no-dogs policy but the benefit is that there seemed to be more wildlife viewing opportunities than most places in Central Florida since many dog owners seem to ignore leash regs and thus scare off wildlife. I saw one of the biggest white tailed deer I've ever seen and a decent sized armadillo doing it's thing on the other side of the path. There were a couple pretty sandy stretches such as between markers 2&3 or 4 on the green route and a small stretch of the center trail, but a large portion of my hike was on packed sand or pine needle heavy surface. If I lived closer I'd come more often for a run or just get away from the commercialization. Well signed pathway and decent sized parking lot at the east entrance.
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