Bill Baggs nature trails and paths are dispersed throughout the park. Whether on foot or by bicycle, you can explore the different habitats from mangrove wetlands, a scenic coastline or tropical hammocks, all offering chances to enjoy plenty of plant and animal wildlife native to the region.
There are several miles of paved roads and several interconnected unpaved paths suitable for biking. Check out the map to get an idea of where everything is. Riding and walking on the paths is easy as it is very flat, but some areas are quite open and there is no protection from the sun, so bring plenty of drinking water and sunscreen. Mosquito repellent will also come in handy.
Some paths will take you through some dense greenery, others along the waterfront. There are a lot of nice scenic views along Biscayne Bay where you can also catch a glimpse of the little houses on stilts or Stiltsville from the tip of the park:
You can bring your own bike or rent at the concession by the south parking lot:
They have an excellent selection for rental bikes, which start at only $3 for half an hour for a regular cruiser. There are tandem bikes, trikes and quadbikes also, which are fun for little kids. And you can even pack the whole family in the mega large quads that seat four adults and two small children for $15.00 for half an hour.
Check out the Bill Baggs official site for latest information on bike rentals and rates.
Bill Baggs State Park went through a major restoration program after the devastation of Hurricane Andrew in 1992. During the process the native vegetation and habitat was brought back, and all non-native species that had been introduced at various points before then were abolished. The results of these efforts which are ongoing, are bearing fruit as much of the fauna supported by these habitats is also making a come back.
The mangrove wetlands cover an area over 300 square meters and are located in the Northwestern area of the park, along Biscayne Bay, just north of the No Name Harbor Marina. The trail starts north from the marina parking area.
Another trail follows east of the Marina and heads south through the coastal strand and further east the path leads towards the interior nature trail. All trails and bike paths are clearly marked.
Whether walking or biking, there will be plenty of wildlife to encounter. There are many kinds of birds to observe depending on the season. In winter, the park is Grand Central station for migratory birds, and in summer, it is breeding time for the Gray Kingbird. Over 170 different species have been seen in the park, look on the trails, picnic areas, on the beachfront, and the marina.
We almost always see ibis around the pavillions and picnic areas. Sometimes in large groups.
Along the trails, expertely camouflaged iguanas are a treat to discover...
Later in the day, the racoons come out as well. As cute and adorable as they might seem, remember to keep your distance, they are wild and could be carrying rabies.
And if walking or biking along the waterfront, keep an eye out for manatees, although hard to see, you can catch a glimpse of the snout when they come up for air
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Things to do at Bill Baggs State Park:
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