GAINESVILLE, Fla. (April 21, 2022) -- A hub for outdoor enthusiasts, Gainesville and Alachua County, Florida thrills nature lovers with unexpected adventures like cave diving in crystal blue, freshwater springs; paddling and tubing down tree-lined waterways; and biking and hiking on over 100 miles of maintained trail systems and pathways. When you're done with your day, there's nothing better than kicking back at one of the area's six craft breweries or savoring innovative cuisine and specialty cocktails at inspired local restaurants.
Experience a hike through wetlands on a raised boardwalk to appreciate alligators, roaming bison, wild horses and dozens of species of birds in their natural habitat on the La Chua Trail or Sweetwater Wetlands Park, one of Florida's top birding sites. Enjoy Alachua County's natural attractions, scenic parks and trails, take a kayak down the Santa Fe River, float in freshwater springs, and discover shops and eateries in charming surrounding towns.
Gainesville has dozens of unique and free activities for visitors including the University of Florida's Harn Museum of Art, featuring the largest collection of Florida-themed art in the world, and the Florida Museum of Natural History with permanent and rotating exhibits and hundreds of free-flying butterflies at the Butterfly Rainforest attraction, and don't miss the world's largest occupied bat houses on the University of Florida campus where bats emerge every night at sunset and make a spectacular display as they span out over Lake Alice and the surrounding gardens and fields.
Gainesville and Alachua County's award-winning breweries offer the perfect spot to sample a refreshing hand-crafted pint while enjoying live entertainment, food trucks, and a taste of local culture. Sip your way to your next favorite beer at one of the area's six locally-owned breweries featuring award-winning beers that have been recognized at the prestigious Best Florida Beer annual competition and the World Beer Cup. Try the revolving special, seasonal and limited releases which are brewed on a weekly basis and available only in the tap rooms.
Before or after a game, fans can choose from hundreds of restaurants and a popular food truck scene. Visitors can find Head Ball Coach Steve Spurrier's 1966 Heisman Trophy and rare sports memorabilia in the heart of Spurrier's Gridiron Grille, one of the state's largest restaurants, which features a sports museum and a collection of coach Spurrier's visors and washrooms wallpapered with handwritten plays straight out of his championship playbooks.
As the hometown of eight Music Hall of Fame musicians, including Bo Diddley and Tom Petty, Gainesville is known for its music scene, and free music abounds throughout the area. Small towns like Micanopy (named one of America's top ten historic small towns) and High Springs prosper with unique shops, restaurants and natural fresh water springs.
When you're ready to explore great food, local brews, dozens of outdoor adventures, real gators and more, go to VisitGainesville.com to request a free Visitor's Guide to start your adventures today!