Located on Paynes Prairie State Park, the La Chua Trail leads visitors by the Alachua Sink where the prairie’s marshland waters descend into the Florida aquifer. The trail takes visitors approximately 1.5 miles into the prairie to an observation tower.

Located in Gainesville, FL this easy to moderate trail is approximately 3.1 miles round trip. Approximately a quarter of the trail is an elevated boardwalk that is handicapped accessible. Along the hike, you'll often see alligators, wild turkeys, wild horses, bison, and various migratory birds.

There is limited shade on the trail. Summer time visitors should be prepared with plenty drinking water, sunscreen, and appropriate apparel. This hike is not dog friendly.

Pack List

  • Water Bottle
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug Spray
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Camera
Show More
RT Distance 3.1 Miles
Activities Chillin, Photography, Hiking
Skill Level Beginner
Season Year Round
Trail Type Out-and-Back
Features
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Groups
Handicap Accessible
Scenic
Wildlife

Reviews

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Overall rating: 

about 2 months ago

So much wildlife!

Great place to see gators, birds, turtles, and if you’re lucky, wild horses and buffalo.

Magical

I absolutely love this place. It’s so magical and peaceful. Right now the trail is closed though, thanks to flooding from hurricane Irma. The water is the highest I have ever seen it. The tradeoff is that there are many birds and other wildlife that you wouldn’t normally see there. (Limpkins!!!) Also, the park isn’t closed- you can still go out on the boardwalk.

Gators Galore

This is a great place to visit for locals or visitors. There are alligators up and down the banks of the creek as you walk along. We have been as close as 2 feet from some of them. There are also wild horses and buffalo near the lookout at the very end.


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

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