The Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park is one of the top Attractions in Orlando, and is a 54,000-acre site that protects the largest remaining area of Florida dry prairie. It is home to a wide variety of endangered animals and plants. When you first drive into the Preserve, you see sweeping views of grasslands that may remind you of the Midwest’s Great Plains. Read on for more information about the Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park
The Rich History of Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park
Early pioneers who settled in the area took advantage of the free roaming cattle that were left behind by early Spanish explorers. These pioneers drove the herds to the train depots or to the coast. Today, you’ll find several historic homesteads with the Preserve.
During World War I, the U.S. military obtained and used the land to conduct training missions. Afterward, the property was returned to the original owners; however, there are still ordinances that remain within the Preserve. Interestingly these ordinances have been reclaimed and absorbed by the prairie environment.
What to Do and See in one of the Best Orlando Attractions
You’ll find more than 100 miles of dirt road that will let you explore hiking, biking or horseback. You can explore wetlands, hammocks, and prairies. The Park offers birders wonderful opportunities to view many endangered species, such as the burrowing owl, the crested caracara, and the Florida grasshopper sparrow.
From November through March you can go on ranger-led buggy tours throughout the more remote parts of the Kissimmee Prairie State Park. The remoteness of this state park makes it a very popular area for stargazing; imagine viewing the clear nighttime skies surrounded by some of the most gorgeous area in the state.
What to Know About Kissimmee Prairie Preserve State Park
Kissimmee Prairie Preserve is situated 33 miles northwest of Okeechobee via US 44A and then County Road 724. Florida state parks, including Kissimmee Prairie Preserve, are open from 8 a.m. until sundown, 365 days a year.
• $4.00 per vehicle. Please use the honor box to pay fees. There is a limit of eight people per vehicle.
• $2.00 Pedestrians, bicyclists, extra passengers, passengers in vehicle with holder of Annual Individual Entrance Pass.
At Tropical Escape Vacation Homes, we know there are so many areas to visit, so if you have any questions at all, just ask one of our friendly staff members.