Set in Florida's Ocala National Forest, on the Florida National Scenic Trail, Alexander Springs Recreation Area is a popular place for swimming, boating, fishing, and even scuba diving—in fact, it’s the only place in the national forest where scuba diving is allowed. Many visitors come just for the day, but if you want to spend the night, there’s a 67-site campground onsite. Tents and RVs up to 35 feet long are allowed, but none of the sites have hookups. Campground amenities include a dump station, hot showers, and a shop with essential supplies and firewood.

Tips for snagging a campsite reservation

  • Some campsites are available on a first-come, first-served basis, while others need to be reserved in advance. It’s best to book in advance when possible.
  • Advance-reservation campsites can be booked up to six months in advance on the National Park Service (NPS) website.
  • If you’re hoping to get a first-come, first-served site, you’ll have better luck if you arrive earlier in the day or on a weekday.
  • If you can’t secure a spot at Alexander Springs, you may have better luck at Clearwater Lake Recreation Area or Juniper Springs Recreation Area, each of which is around 20 minutes away by car.


When to go

The best time to visit Alexander Springs is in the spring or in the autumn, when the weather is pleasantly warm and the crowds are reasonable. However, if you plan to scuba dive in the spring, you may want to pack a wetsuit. Summer is the busiest season, and the campground fills up early this time of year. It's also the hottest and rainiest, particularly in August


Know before you go

  • You can rent canoes and kayaks and buy groceries, firewood, and ice from the park’s concessionaire.
  • The closest place to get gas is in the nearby town of Altoona.
  • Pets are allowed at the campground, but are prohibited from the day-use area (even in cars).
  • Accessible features include showers, bathrooms, and a picnic area. The boardwalk section of the park's nature trail is also suitable for wheelchairs.
  • Fishing is allowed at Alexander Springs, but all anglers must obtain a Florida Freshwater Fishing License in advance.
  • Swimming, scuba diving, kayaking, and canoeing are allowed at Alexander Springs, but motorized boats are prohibited.
Campsite area
Tent or RV sites
66 sites
Up to 5 guests per site
Up to 6 vehicles
No wheelchair access
Campfires allowed
Toilet available
Pets allowed
Potable water available
Picnic table available


Offered near the campground.

Horseback riding
Off-roading (OHV)
Wildlife watching


Natural features you'll find at Alexander Springs Recreation Area and Campground.

River, stream, or...
Swimming hole
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16 Reviews

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Drop some Alexander Springs Recreation Area and Campground knowledge on us.
Hipcamper James
James C.
didn't provide a recommendation.
April 7th, 2019

Are generators allowed at night?

Hipcamper Keith
Keith N.
didn't provide a recommendation.
May 31st, 2017

This was the first place I camped after moving to FL a couple of years ago, and after exploring other places it remains my favorite. There is plenty of hiking accessible right from the park, you can fish (not in the spring head itself but a little farther down), the campsites are spacious and shaded by a nice canopy of trees, and the water is just beautiful.

We had 4 people in 2 tents with 3 dogs felt like we had plenty of room.

I recommend going in the cooler season. You may need a wetsuit jacket (for the air temp more than water temp), but you can pretty much have the water to yourself unlike the craziness of the summer season.

Hipcamper Emily
Emily P.
didn't provide a recommendation.
May 2nd, 2016

This is a nice spring with a large swimming area and sunbathing/picnic area. The spring flows into a beautiful clear, shallow river for canoeing and kayaking. There is a short board-walk trail through the "jungle" and there is also access to the Florida Trail near the campground entrance, which is a hiking trail that runs the length of the state. The only problem I had with this campground is you may not bring your pets into the picnic/beach area including the parking lot. You may not even leave them in your car in the parking lot, and the park ranger was very rude and mean about this. You can have pets in campsite, but if you wanted to just stop in for a quick swim, can't do it with a pet.

Hipcamper Frank J.
Frank J. A.
didn't provide a recommendation.
June 25th, 2015

Alexander Springs is a gorgeous camping option, being my first place I ever camped it set the record high. The water is refreshing, gorgeous scenery with a long trail and canoeing plus snorkeling/diving are options!

Hipcamper Japa and Laks
Japa And Laks M.
didn't provide a recommendation.
May 14th, 2015

Alexander Springs is a magnificent 1st magnitude spring. Perfect for a day visit or camping trip as the sites are not located too far away from the springs. Many beautiful trails which are not to be missed.

Hipcamper Valerie L.
recommends this listing.
March 19th, 2019
Hipcamper Zach R.
recommends this listing.
February 4th, 2019
Hipcamper Samantha V.
recommends this listing.
February 11th, 2019
Hipcamper Christopher  P.
recommends this listing.
March 10th, 2019
Hipcamper Mary W.
doesn't recommend this listing.
November 14th, 2019
Hipcamper Alan R.
recommends this listing.
January 2nd, 2019
Hipcamper Jonathan G.
recommends this listing.
January 14th, 2018
Hipcamper Ricardo N.
has mixed feelings towards this listing.
April 4th, 2017
Hipcamper James C.
recommends this listing.
March 26th, 2017
Hipcamper Debbie H.
recommends this listing.
February 16th, 2017
Ocala National Forest
United States
Phone Number
View on Google Maps
Official Website
View Website
29.079° N, 81.58° W
Unknown price
Tent / RV / Trailer: 66 Sites
(Up to 5 people per site)