Floridian Nature

Learn about Florida's beautiful and unique nature.





Florida Nature: Falling Waters State Park
Falling waters waterfall found near Chipley FloridaFalling Waters State Park is located 3 miles south of Chipley, Florida. In this quaint town you’ll find antique shops, restaurants, and almost anything you will need to make your stay a pleasant one.

From the park you are a short drive from Ponce De Leon Springs State Park, Florida Caverns State Park, and some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Only a few miles south of I-10, the park provides travelers with a quiet, serene stop on their journey. Visitors can see beautiful native and migrating butterflies in the butterfly garden, take a dip in the lake, or have a family picnic.

Hikers can experience the verdant, gently sloping landscape of North Florida. Huge trees and fern-covered sinkholes line Sink Hole Trail, the boardwalk that leads visitors to Florida's highest waterfall. Falling Waters Sink is a 100-foot deep, 20-foot wide cylindrical pit into which flows a small stream that drops 73 feet to the bottom of the sink. The water's final destination remains unknown.
 
Falling Waters State Park has three short nature trails. One trail will take you past the butterfly garden as you stroll toward the waterfall sinkhole. Once there, you can actually walk down into this sinkhole and get a breath taking view of Florida's highest waterfall. Then take an elevated boardwalk around a series of sinkholes under a canopy of southern magnolias and other hardwoods.

There are self-guided tours and information kiosks throughout Falling Waters State Park. A guided tour by a Park Ranger of Falling Waters State Park is available to groups by prior notification (call the park). As always, if your curiosity has gotten the best of you, and you want to know why we burn the park, have sink holes, or even have parks at all, just ask a Park Ranger.  

Falling Waters State Park has a two-acre lake with a white sand beach. It is a great place to relax and get your feet wet. The swimming area of the lake is sectioned off for safety, and has a sand bottom. There are picnic tables, benches, and restrooms under shade trees. You can fish at the lake in designated areas with a Florida Freshwater Fishing License.



Falling waters state park in Florida has fern covered sink holesDepending on what time of year you visit Falling Waters State Park, you may or may not view a cascading waterfall into a 100-foot deep ancient sinkhole, as the waterfall is dependent on the ground seepage from rainfall. However, if you are a nature lover, don’t let the lack of a waterfall deter your interest in visiting this 173-acre State Park, as the geological wonders of the gigantic sinkholes are perhaps the most interesting feature this park provides. A boardwalk path wraps around several ancient sinkholes with huge magnolias shooting up from the bases of the fern and moss-covered holes along Sink Hole Trail.

During the 1778 British occupation of Florida, Native Americans were still living on Falling Waters Hill and the surrounding area. Though they left no written records, artifacts are often found whenever a field is tilled.  In 1919, one of the first oil wells in Florida was drilled at Falling Waters. Indian legends and a wildcat stock promoter’s claim of oil, helped get the project going. A Tall, wooden derrick and steam driven rigs were used to drill for oil, but the drillers had little luck. When a depth of 3,900 feet was reached, a blow of gas released from the drill site temporarily excited area residents with a false report of a gusher. Promoters continued to drill the oil well to a final depth of 4,912 feet. When all was said and done, no oil of commercial quality was ever found. The well was capped in 1921.  The terrestrial caves of the park are documented roosting sites for the southeastern bat.

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Falling Waters State Park is located 3 miles south of Chipley, Florida. Falling Waters State Park has three short nature trails. One trail will take you past the butterfly garden as you stroll toward the waterfall sinkhole. Once there, you can actually walk down into this sinkhole and get a breath taking view of Florida's highest waterfall.
Beautiful Floridian nature awaits you at Falling Waters State Park. Hikers can experience the verdant, gently sloping landscape of North Florida. Huge trees and fern-covered sinkholes line Sink Hole Trail, the boardwalk that leads visitors to Florida's highest waterfall. Falling Waters Sink is a 100-foot deep, 20-foot wide cylindrical pit into which flows a small stream that drops 73 feet to the bottom of the sink. The water's final destination remains unknown.
Falling Waters State Park
Date published: 10/22/2013
4.5 / 5 stars