Highland Hammock State Park

2021 is the year of camping.  Covid has had an impact in the travel industry and has caused many of us to change the way we travel.  I’ve always loved exploring my own backyard and realize how many destinations in the US I would love to discover. For the last 6 months I’ve been tent camping and have developed a love of state parks.  Florida alone has nearly 200 state parks.  The guests at campgrounds are some of the friendly people that I’ve met. I have made new friends sitting around the campfire sharing stories.

Highland Hammock state Park, located in Central Florida near Sebring, is Real Florida at it’s best.  Surrounded by a beautiful old-growth hammock, the state park boasts more rare and endemic species than any other park.   The park has 9 hiking trails and over 14 miles of bike trails. Bikes are available to rent at the Hammock Inn.  

 Eight of the nine trails are located on the loop drive and are accessible by car or bike.  Visitors can explore these trails with towering oaks and a spectacular hydric hammock.  Don’t be surprised to see a Florida panther or black bear, deer and alligators. My favorite trail was the Cypress swamp, also known as the catwalk, which included an elevated, yet narrow, boardwalk.

Equestrian trails are also available for those who own horses.

I was disappointed to learn that the Civilian Conservation Corps Museum located at the historic site is currently closed. The museum is an opportunity to learn about the men and women who helped build the Florida State Parks. The historic site also offers concessions and souvenirs at the Hammock Inn Concession and a music in the park section.

The campground has multiple sites ranging from small tent sites to RV sites, accommodating 20 to 50 ft RVs with full hook ups. 

I had a shady tent site situated under the pine trees.  There was plenty of room for my tent and screen canopy.  The bath house was close and fairly clean.  Bring your furry kids as pets are welcome.

Reservations for camping can be made up to 11 months in advance and fill up quickly.  I’ve learned to keep checking back as it is fairly common for Rvers to reserve multiple sites and different state parks and then cancel later.

If you’ve never camped it’s not too late to start. I’ll see you at the campsite!

I’m a freelance writer and photographer living in SW Florida. I have a love of travel and photography. Living in Florida, my backyard is a travel destination with crystal clear water, beautiful beaches, quaint towns, and amazing wildlife. Wander with me…

Stephanie Karasek
Empowerment Coach
Damsel Safety Trainer

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