River to Sea Preserve

9805 N Oceanshore Blvd., Palm Coast, 32137
(386) 313-4020
sunrise to 11pm

hammock

This preserve encompasses woods and waters from the Matanzas River to the Atlantic Ocean. Begin at the main entrance on the west side of A1A, where Ospreys nest in the cell tower beside the parking lot. A paved walkway curves past a freshwater pond and two observation decks provide good vantage points to view the wildlife. Look up to see Wood Storks, Bald Eagles and Swallow-tailed Kites riding the thermals. Hiking and biking trails loop through maritime hammock and oak scrub, and two brief side trails lead to overlooks on the river, where river otters, manatees, dolphins and sea turtles are sometimes observed. The preserve’s live oaks provide food and shelter for migratory songbirds; look for wood-warblers such as Blackpoll, Black-throated Blue and Cape May as well as Wood Thrush, Summer Tanager and Bobolink . The preserve offers good butterfly watching, particularly on the Scrub Loop trail. Look for Eastern Pygmy-Blue, Phaon Crescent, Queen, Viceroy, Monarch, Great Southern White, and Giant Swallowtail. To take advantage of the preserve’s beach, which can be walked for several miles in either direction, there are multiple access points. Look for Northern Gannet and Bonaparte’s Gulls in the winter and Black Terns and Lesser Black-backed Gulls in late summer.

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