Poe Springs Park is located in High Springs, Florida not to far from the well known Ginnie Springs on Highway 340 west of Gainesville. The official address is 28800 NW 182nd Ave, High Springs, FL 32643. The park has an entrance fee of $5.00 (as of this writing, August 2019) and if the spring reaches a capacity of 100 people the park may close to limit the number of people in the spring. The park is open 7 days a week from dawn to dusk - with the spring and boat ramp closing about 30 minutes before.
Have you heard of it? It is a beautiful county park, well maintained and a great way to spend several hours - whether you want to have a picnic, walk your dog, play on the playground, do a little walking or enjoy the beautiful spring. On a Saturday morning we stopped in to check out this park and see what the spring located on the Santa Fe River offered. We were pleasantly surprised - this is a beautiful spring and not to crowded at the time we visited.
When we arrived, our little pack all leashed up and water with us, we headed from the parking lot to see what was nearby (picnic tables, restrooms, playground) and eventually we found this path. Please note that dogs are allowed in the park, but must be kept out of the springs to preserve this natural Florida resource - please respect this so we can preserve it for future visitors.
The dogs are familiar with this, and off down the little pathway we went. Eventually, we noticed more people and the walkway changed to boardwalk. There were many people carry their supplies along this well maintained boardwalk to the spring in a wagon - some with coolers on wheels. If you're taking any amount of things, definitely plan to have some method to carry it all as the walk to the spring does involve a bit of walking.
After a fair amount of walking (about 1000 feet on the boardwalk). Dogs are not allowed in the spring area, so we stopped short of that and sat in a small area that allows a view of the spring. This is the area the families were carrying all their belongings to.
The spring is a good size and the water was clear - I could see a turtle swimming around in the water below. This spring has a lot of shallow areas that make it ideal for small children. You can see several people standing in the water and it's knee high on adults in some areas. The spring is accessible from the Santa Fe River if you have a boat - the photograph below is facing to the west and just beyond the trees the Santa Fe River flows. We did not swim in this spring, but there is an area that appears to be where the water flows out of the vent which is about 2' by 3' with a cave about 13 feet long (per another website). Poe Springs pumps an average of 45 million gallons of cool, refreshing water daily.
They have a map that shows the many different springs located along the Santa Fe river - this map has the famous "You Are Here" that we have all become used to seeing - the map was a bit large for a single photograph ( if you want to be able to read it ), so here's a portion of the map. On the far left of the map is the Suwannee River which the Santa Fe River flows into.
If you're in the area, or perhaps Ginnie Springs is full, this might be a nice alternative - no scuba diving, just snorkeling and swimming.