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red pine lily in a field at Wingate Creek State Park

Multi-use trails spread across Wingate Creek State Park’s 614 acres of undeveloped scrub, flatwoods, and wetlands attracting nature lovers and bird enthusiasts.

This gorgeous area, located near Myakka City, is just 13 miles east of Lake Manatee State Park, and 62 miles south of Tampa. Guests enjoy hiking, mountain biking, and bird watching.

This Florida state park is named for its previous owners, the Wingate family, who once happily resided here, having arrived in this peaceful area during the 1890s. Today the park is managed through nearby Lake Manatee State Park which also offers overnight accommodations and a chance to swim, fish, kayak, hike, picnic and more.

Activities

Discover this peaceful area as you wander (or ride) through flatwoods, scrub, marsh and along the creeks and river. Bring a picnic and take it with you as you explore the trails. At the end of the day head over to nearby Lake Manatee State Park and spend the night in their campground located along the lake.

Here are a few activities that you can do during your visit to Wingate Creek State Park:

Hiking at Wingate Creek State Park

Hike (or mountain bike) through 4 miles of undeveloped areas of hardwood hammock, pine flatwoods, prairie, baygall, scrub, freshwater marshland and open fields. A visit to Wingate Creek State Park is like a portal back in time. The area is much the same as it was when it was settled during the 1890s.

Birding at Wingate Creek State Park

This peaceful undeveloped area is ideal for bird watching. So bring your binoculars, cameras and bird lists and see what you might discover. Both native and migratory birds may be seen throughout the area. Some you may see during your visit include: Bald Eagles, ospreys, egrets, herons, cormorants, ibises, anhingas, ducks, Mourning Doves, Brown Pelicans, Roseate spoonbills, wood storks, Red-tailed Hawks, Sandhill Cranes and Swallow-tailed Kite.

Nature and Wildlife at Wingate Creek State Park

Expect to hear and see many different species of wildlife during your visit to Wingate Creek State Park. The park’s natural communities of scrub, marsh, hammock and pine flatwoods help protect and nurture many species such as white-tailed deer, wild turkeys, gopher tortoises, snakes, lizards, alligators, Sherman’s fox squirrels, and Florida mouse.

Colorful wildflowers such as Florida paintbrush, blazing stars, terrestrial orchids and pine lilies brighten up the park during the fall.

Pets at Wingate Creek State Park

Pets are allowed inside Wingate Creek State Park but must be supervised and kept on a hand held leash no longer than 6 feet.

Camping Near Wingate Creek State Park

After you have thoroughly explored the trails, had a picnic and taken in all of the sights and sounds inside beautiful Wingate Creek State Park you’ll want to spend the night somewhere nearby. Here are a couple of popular options:

  • Lake Manatee State Park, located at 20007 State Road 64 East in Bradenton, offers lakeside camping. Their 60 campsites have water and electric hookups, and access to picnic tables, restrooms, a dump station, a playground, beach area, boat ramp and dock.
  • Myakka River State Park, located at 13208 State Rd 72 in Sarasota, offers its guests a variety of overnight accommodations to choose from: modern campgrounds, primitive campsites, group camping areas and rustic cabins.

    Ninety campsites have electric and water hookups, a picnic table, fire ring and access to restrooms and hot showers. Another 6 primitive campsites, located along the trails, have fire rings and a post for hanging items. And the group camping areas, available for youth groups of up to 20 people, are close to bathrooms and drinking water.

    The rustic log cabins have full kitchens, a bathroom with shower, a large common room that sleeps up to 6, a fireplace and a porch. These old cabins were originally built by the Civilian Conservation Corps during the late 1930s. No pets are allowed inside the cabins.

Visit Nearby Lake Manatee State Park

Round out your visit to this serene area by spending a few nights (and days) at nearby Lake Manatee State Park. This beautiful state park, located at 20007 State Road 64 East in Bradenton, lies along the shores of Lake Manatee.

Enjoy a refreshing swim; fish for largemouth bass, crappie, bluegill, speckled perch and catfish in the 2,400 acre reservoir; kayak or canoe along 5 miles of paddling trails; and hike, bike or horse ride across the 6.5 miles of multi-use trails.

Park Location

Wingate Creek State Park
38620 East State Road 64
Myakka City, FL 34251
Phone: 207.768.8341

Website

Map

Video

Here is a short YouTube video showcasing several attractions at Wingate Creek State Park: