(Last Updated On: December 30, 2022)
The Orman House in Apalachicola, Florida.

The Orman House in Apalachicola, Florida. Photo: Ebyabe, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Orman House Historic State Park features a majestic 19th century mansion and botanical gardens along the Apalachicola River on St. George Island just 76 miles south of Tallahassee. The historic Orman House was built by cotton merchant and businessman Thomas Orman.

Because of him, the small town of Apalachicola became one of the most important cotton exporting ports along the Gulf Coast during the mid 1800s.

Today guests enjoy touring this Greek Revival style mansion and strolling through the Chapman Botanical Gardens. The garden’s flora and picturesque walkways extend into the surrounding park and offer visitors stunning views of wildlife.

Nearby St. George Island State Park features opportunities for camping, swimming, paddling, fishing and hiking.

Apalachicola’s small southern town charm is evident throughout its shops, restaurants and more.

Activities

A visit to this unique Florida state park offers guests a chance to get a glimpse of the past. By touring the historic Orman House and gardens visitors discover what life might have been like here during the early 19th century.

Picnic areas with tables and grills are provided inside the garden area. And walkways throughout the gardens and the park grounds offer guests not only a chance to stretch their legs but also to see the surrounding flora and fauna of St. George’s Island.

The park features special events throughout the year such as living history presentations, concerts, nature studies and art shows. Check the park’s event page on their website.

Here are some of the activities that you can do during your visit to Orman House Historic State Park:

The Mansion at Orman House Historic State Park

Discover the majestic 1838 Orman House during your visit to Orman House Historic State Park. This two-story Greek Revival mansion actually only contains 4 rooms: a parlor, dining room and two bedrooms. But these 4 large rooms feature stunning heart pine floorboards, wooden mantels and molded cornices and highlight the period when the house was originally built.

Orman House is open for guided tours Thursdays through Saturdays, 9am to 5pm.

The Gardens at Orman House Historic State Park

After touring The Orman House take a peaceful stroll through Chapman Botanical Garden, open daily from 8am until sunset. These gorgeous gardens were named after Dr. Alvan Chapman, prominent botanist and author of “Flora of the Southern United States”.

These picturesque gardens include a butterfly garden, a gazebo, benches, walkway that loop through, and an elevated boardwalk over a marsh. The Three Soldiers Detail, located nearby, is a bronze replica statue of the one at the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C.

Birding at Orman House Historic State Park

Orman House Historic State Park is a great spot for bird lovers, about 300 bird species have been sighted along this barrier island and inside neighboring St. George Island State Park.

Both native and migrating birds may be seen here, such as Bald eagles, Peregrine Falcons, Brown Pelicans, gulls, osprey, egrets, terns, herons, Black skimmers, sandpipers, plovers, American Oystercatchers, warblers and buntings.

Nature and Wildlife at Orman House Historic State Park

While walking through the grounds and gardens at Orman House Historic State Park guests will have the opportunity to see birds, butterflies, snakes, frogs and lizards. Inside the surrounding area raccoons, deer, squirrels, tortoises, coyotes and many sea creatures may also be spotted.

Pets at Orman House Historic State Park

Pets are allowed at Orman House Historic State Park, but only in designated areas. Pets must be supervised and remain on a hand held leash no longer than 6 feet.

Camping Near Orman House Historic State Park

Tour the historic house and gardens inside Orman House Historic State Park and then head over to nearby St. George Island State Park to spend the night.

St. George Island State Park features modern campsites, primitive campsites and a group camping area inside a 1,962 acre barrier island paradise. Nestled among the pine flatwoods, 60 campsites have water and electric hookups and are located near restrooms, hot showers, a playground and a nature trail.

The primitive campsites are only accessible by foot, along the Gap Point Trail. There are no restrooms, showers or drinking water near these sites. The group camping area can accommodate organized groups of up to 25 people and has picnic tables, a campfire circle, restrooms and cold water showers. Hammocks are allowed at all campsites throughout the park.

Activities Near Orman House Historic State Park

Nearby St. George Island State Park features 9 miles of pristine beaches along the Gulf. Amenities include a beach, kayak and canoe rentals, star gazing opportunities, fishing for flounder, redfish and sea trout, and trails that spread throughout pine forest and along the coastal scrub.

Park Location

Orman House Historic State Park
177 5th St
Apalachicola, FL 32320
Phone: 850.653.1209

Website

Map

Video

Here is a short YouTube video showcasing several attractions at Orman House Historic State Park: