“The Florida Trail (FNST) is a congressionally designated National Scenic Trail. It is approximately 1,300-miles long, and is intended to offer a continuous, permanent non-motorized recreation opportunity for hiking and other compatible activities. Over its length, it showcases the incredible biodiversity, history, and rich culture of Florida.
Threading its way from the sugar sand beaches of Gulf Islands National Seashore in the Florida Panhandle to the cypress domes of Big Cypress National Preserve in the Everglades, the Florida National Scenic Trail (or Florida Trail for short) connects the state’s most outstanding scenic, natural, cultural and historic resources.
The Florida Trail travels 1,300 miles throughout the state, offering recreational opportunities year-round as the nation’s only subtropical National Scenic Trail. Located within a one-hour drive of most major metropolitan areas, the Florida Trail is the perfect destination for new hikers, families and even experienced thrill-seekers. Explore Florida’s wild side and find your adventure on the Florida Trail!”
– Florida Trail Association, floridatrail.com
“James Kern envisioned the Florida Trail while hiking the Appalachian Trail in the early 1960s.
Upon returning to Florida, he founded the Florida Trail Association (FTA) to help create a long-distance hiking trail in the Sunshine State. The efforts of this dedicated volunteer organization helped establish the first orange blaze on the Florida Trail, painted in Ocala National Forest in 1966.
The Florida Trail was officially recognized as a National Scenic Trail in 1983, joining a select group of congressionally designated long-distance trails. Today you can follow the orange blazes of the Florida National Scenic Trail (FNST) for more than 1,300 miles, crossing more than 76 partner land management units within the state.
The USDA Forest Service is the administrator of the Florida Trail, charged with planning routes, overseeing development and establishing partnerships to complete the trail. The National Forests in Florida and FNST Coalition, an advisory group of public and private partners, work collaboratively to close the last remaining gaps and establish permanent protection along the entirety of the Florida Trail.”
– The Florida Trail Association, floridatrail.com
If you are ready to start planning your own thru hike of The Florida Trail, you can find all of the information you will need on my “How to Plan for and Hike The Florida Trail” Page: