Description - **Note: This information was provided by www.floridastateparks.org.
Freshwater marshes or "savannas" once extended all along Florida's southeast coast. Stretching more than 10 miles from Ft. Pierce to Jensen Beach, this preserve is the largest and most intact remnant of Florida's east coast savannas. A good place for visitors to start is the Environmental Education Center where they can learn about the importance of this unique and endangered natural system. Picnic tables are available near the center. Canoeing, kayaking, and fishing in the wetlands are popular activities. Wildlife enthusiasts and photographers can enjoy the diversity of habitats this undisturbed area offers. Over eight miles of multi-use trails provide opportunities for hiking, bicycling, and horseback riding. Guided walks and canoe trips are available by reservation. The Education Center is located in Port St. Lucie, two miles east of U.S. 1 on Walton Road.
- Both the Savannas and St. Lucie River Preserve provide excellent areas to observe nature. These areas are home to a variety of birds and wildlife. On your hike, you may encounter a Bobcat, Deer, Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake, or even see an Alligator. You may also see a Bald Eagle (there is a nesting pair in the Savannas), a Red-tailed Hawk soaring overhead, a Great Blue Heron in the marsh, or even a Florida Scrub-jay. Come and enjoy a day in the woods and see what nature has to offer.
The Savannas offers picnic shelters at a number of places in the preserve. These pavilions are located at the Jensen Beach trailhead, the Education Center on Walton Road, and at the Canoe Launch area, located ¾ of a mile north of the Education Center. Each pavilion has picnic tables provided. These pavilions are available on a first-come, first-served basis. No reservations are taken for these facilities. Please remember to use the trash receptacles that are provided.
Recreation - There are over 8.5 miles of multi-use trails available to park visitors and group tours. The trails are shared by hikers, bicyclists and horseback riders. The nature trails wind throughout the Savannas marsh system, so depending on the season and weather, the trails may be wet. Please plan accordingly! There is a designated equestrian area for those who trailer their horses to the trails. For additional information and equestrian gate combinations please contact the Education Center Wednesdays - Sundays at (772) 398-2779 or the Park Office at (772) 340-7530.
Fishing is available at the Savannas and the St. Lucie River Preserve. The Savannas provides freshwater fishing. The St. Lucie River provides the same, although some saltwater species may be found in the river as well. Please keep in mind that you must have the necessary licenses to participate in this activity.
Canoe and kayak rentals are available every Saturday morning October through May. Our guided trip departs at 9AM and generally returns after about 2 hours of exploration. Reservations are required for the trip and space is limited. Canoe and kayak trips are available throughout the summer months and at other times during the week if requested.
Climate - Florida's weather is dominated by the water that surrounds it. The Atlantic Ocean in the east and the Gulf of Mexico in the west provide a stabilizing force that maintains the mild climate. Northern Florida is considered sub tropical, although it does receive some snow. This area is drier than the rest of the state. Southern areas of the state, definitely the Keys, lie within a tropical climate. Humidity is high, a characteristic of the climate, although the temperatures usually don't extend past 90 degrees F.
On the average the state receives 50 to 65 inches of rain. Summer is the rainy season, which extends into October in the south. Hurricane season begins in late August. Some hurricanes can bring up to 25 inches of rain. An average of two hurricanes per season reach the Florida peninsula. Most often these storms reach the Atlantic Coast rather than the Gulf Coast.
The Environmental Education Center is is located approximately 2 miles east of US 1 on Walton Road in Port St. Lucie.