17 Best Places and Things To Do in Gainesville Florida

Gainesville, Florida is a vibrant city that boasts a diverse array of attractions and activities. Here are some of the best places to visit and things to do in Gainesville:

1. Florida Museum of Natural History

File:Florida Museum of Natural History 2.jpg

Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Florida_Museum_of_Natural_History

This museum is home to a wide range of exhibits on Florida’s natural history, including displays on fossils, flora and fauna, and the state’s indigenous peoples.

2. Kanapaha Botanical Garden

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d123102-Reviews-Kanapaha_Botanical_Gardens-Gainesville_Florida.html

These beautiful gardens span 62 acres and feature a variety of plant collections, including camellias, bamboo, and palms. The gardens also host a range of events throughout the year.

3. Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g34242-d573001-Reviews-Paynes_Prairie-Gainesville_Florida.html

This 21,000-acre state park is home to a variety of wildlife, including alligators, bison, and wild horses. Visitors can hike, bike, and camp in the park, as well as take guided wildlife tours.

4. Devil’s Millhopper Geological State Park

File:Devil's Millhopper - 2.jpg

Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Devil%27s_Millhopper_Geological_State_Park

This park features a unique sinkhole that is over 100 feet deep and 500 feet wide. Visitors can hike down into the sinkhole and explore its unique ecosystem.

5. Harn Museum of Art

File:UF HarnMuseum.JPG

Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Samuel_P._Harn_Museum_of_Art

This museum features a wide range of art from around the world, including African, Asian, and contemporary art.

6. Santa Fe College Teaching Zoo

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d2039435-Reviews-Santa_Fe_College_Teaching_Zoo-Gainesville_Florida.html

This zoo is run by the Santa Fe College’s Zoo Animal Technology Program and features a variety of exotic animals, including monkeys, tigers, and bears.

7. Sweetwater Wetlands Park

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d8337819-Reviews-Sweetwater_Wetlands_Park-Gainesville_Florida.html

This 125-acre park features a network of walking trails that wind through wetlands, marshes, and ponds. Visitors can spot a variety of birds and other wildlife, including alligators, otters, and herons.

8. Tom Petty Park

Image Source: https://www.gainesvillefl.gov/Parks/Tom-Petty-Park

This park honors Gainesville native and rock legend Tom Petty with a statue, murals, and a performance stage. Visitors can enjoy live music performances, public art displays, and outdoor events.

9. Carson Springs Wildlife Conservation Foundation

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d5961946-Reviews-Carson_Springs_Wildlife_Conservation_Foundation-Gainesville_Florida.html

ocated in Gainesville, Florida, that is dedicated to the conservation and preservation of wildlife. The foundation is home to over 80 exotic animals, including big cats like tigers, lions, and cougars, as well as bears, primates, and other animals.

10. Depot Park

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d12073263-Reviews-Depot_Park-Gainesville_Florida.html

located in downtown Gainesville, Florida, that features a variety of recreational activities and amenities. The park is built on the site of a former rail yard and depot, and it features many historic structures that have been restored and repurposed for modern use.

11. La Chua Trail

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d10212748-Reviews-La_Chua_Trail-Gainesville_Florida.html

located in Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park, just south of Gainesville, Florida. The trail is known for its abundant wildlife, including alligators, bison, and a wide range of bird species, making it a great destination for nature lovers and birdwatchers.

12. A Nan Buddhist Statue Park

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d12070402-Reviews-A_Nan_Buddhist_Statue_Park-Gainesville_Florida.html

The park was created by the monks of the nearby Temple Wat Mongkolratanaram, who began collecting Buddha statues in the 1990s. The statues were donated by members of the community, and over time, the collection grew to include a wide variety of styles and materials.

13. Kanapaha Park

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d3597831-Reviews-Kanapaha_Park-Gainesville_Florida.html

One of the most popular features of Kanapaha Park is its extensive trail system, which includes both paved and unpaved paths that wind through the park’s natural areas. The trails are ideal for hiking, jogging, or cycling, and provide visitors with ample opportunities to explore the park’s beautiful scenery.

14. Matheson History Museum

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d6706292-Reviews-Matheson_History_Museum-Gainesville_Florida.html

located in downtown Gainesville, Florida, that celebrates the history and heritage of the North Central Florida region. The museum is housed in a historic building that dates back to the early 20th century and features a variety of exhibits and educational programs that showcase the region’s rich history.

15. Cellon Oak Park

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d8283635-Reviews-Cellon_Oak_Park-Gainesville_Florida.html

located in Alachua County, just outside of Gainesville, Florida. The park is named for a massive live oak tree, estimated to be over 400 years old, which serves as the centerpiece of the park.

16. Palm Point Nature Park

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d9455785-Reviews-Palm_Point_Nature_Park-Gainesville_Florida.html

located on the banks of the Newnans Lake in Gainesville, Florida. The park covers about 25 acres and offers visitors a tranquil escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.

17. Loblolly Woods Nature Park

Image Source: https://www.tripadvisor.in/Attraction_Review-g34242-d12791196-Reviews-Loblolly_Woods_Nature_Park-Gainesville_Florida.html

Loblolly Woods Nature Park is a beautiful and peaceful park located in Gainesville, Florida. The park covers about 65 acres and features a variety of natural habitats, including upland forests, wetlands, and marshes.

Gainesville, Florida offers a wide range of attractions and activities that are sure to appeal to visitors of all ages and interests.