Alexander Springs recreation area, located in the Ocala National Forest, is one of the premier springs in Florida.
The springs area is enjoyed by swimmers, snorkelers and scuba divers. The main spring boil goes to about 30 feet of depth and has some small caverns at the bottom.
Fish and occasionally alligators can be viewed swimming in the springs. Camping, trails and a canoe and kayak run are nearby the large swimming area.
The 72-degree water is chilly, but comfortable and usually crystal-clear.
Alexander Springs is one of only 27 first-magnitude springs in Florida, and is one of the easiest to access.
The broad and gently-sloped spring pool provides a safe swim area for small children.
Wildlife is abundant in the recreation area surrounding the springs. Raccoons, bears, birds, alligators and other creatures can be seen in the heavy woods.
Nature hiking trails throughout the forest are available to see the pristine wilderness.
Alexander Springs has ample paved parking, a large picnic area with barbeque grills, clean restroom facilities and boardwalks and sidewalks to ease access.
The lush tree canopy surrounding the springs and day-use area gives a tropical feel to the park.
Learn more about Florida's many springs in our Florida Springs guide.
Stephen M. Dowell can be reached at email@example.com. Follow the Sentinel photo staff on Twitter @OSPhoto. Like us on Facebook: Orlando Sentinel Photography.