A great section of the Florida Trail runs right through the Little Big Econ State Forest in Oviedo. It’s one our favorite hiking trails in Central Florida for families with kids age 7 and up.
Why do we consider this a kid-friendly hike, you ask? For starters, it’s an exciting 2.4-mile trail (not too long for the littles) with canopy coverage for most of the trail, protecting hikers from sun exposure. Plus, there are several interesting things to see along the way to keep kids excited, including a small waterfall, a few walking bridges and a high vantage point along the surprisingly tall banks of the Econ River. There’s a little beach oasis along the river where families can stop and play (just keep an eye out for gators). We’ve also enjoyed swinging from giant vines that hang from the canopy and collecting air plants during our treks.
Getting there: Bring two cars. Park one at the Barr Street Trailhead parking lot (off Geneva Drive) so it’s waiting for you at the end of your hike. Then jump in the second car and drive to the the area where Evans Boulevard dead-ends at Lockwood Boulevard. There’s a small parking area there that’s marked by a wood fence. Begin your hike at the Florida Trail marker there. Happy trails!
PLAY Tip: Download a geocaching app to look for hidden treasures. There are several caches hidden along the trail. Bring some old trinkets to follow the “take a treasure; leave a treasure” concept of geocaching. floridahikes.com