Kayaking In Oleta River State Park
One of the best reasons to visit is to kayak.
We were surprised to find beautiful mangrove tunnels on the kayak trail that weaves through the park. The trail took us less than an hour to complete, but we couldnt paddle to Sandspur Island in the Intracoastal because it was a very windy day. The parks lagoon open out to Biscayne Bay and if you head to Sandspur Island , Oleta would provide a couple of hours of good kayaking. Kayakers sometimes see manatees and dolphins.
Sandspur is also known as Beer Can Island and is one of the largest spoil islands in Biscayne Bay. It is a 15-acre island with a sandy beach facing Oleta and it takes about a half hour to reach by kayak. There are no facilities there and it is densely wooded. It is also a popular destination for power boaters on weekends.
The park has a large and active kayak concessionaire that offers canoes, kayaks and stand up paddleboards, and also offers full-moon kayak tours and Friday night sunset tours. Heres a link to the concessionaire, Oleta River Outdoor Center.
If you want to launch your own canoe or kayak, you must launch from parking lot four or five, not the concessionaire launch site.
As of 2021, a second kayak option is available. The concessionaire has re-opened the historic Blue Marlin Fish House. It is situated on park land but is located outside its main entrance at 2500 NE 163rd St., North Miami Beach.
If you bring your own kayak there is a small fee to launch here.
Mountain Biking At Oleta River State Park
South Florida is flat, but Oleta River State Park has over 10 miles of intermediate mountain bike trails that have been built to be hilly and challenging. Oleta is, in fact, locally famous as the best mountain biking site in the region. Be warned, though: The roots will get you here. They require constant attention as you pedal through the off-road biking trails that wind throughout the park. If you kayak, cyclists are often visible from the kayak/canoe trails.
Oleta River State Park bike rental: The park concessionaire rents mountain bikes. Heres advice we were given: If you plan to rent, test out the bike you are given to make sure it is in full working order before you head out on the trail.
The park also has three miles of paved trails, which can be ridden by bike or used by roller bladers.
Camping And Cabin Rentals
Oleta River State Park does not have regular camping options for tents or RVs, but it does offer rustic camping cabins which can be rented.
The park has fourteen cabins available for rent.
These cabins are air conditioned, but are otherwise very basic and rustic, and offer limited amenities.
The cabins have simple beds, porches and outdoor picnic tables. The cabins do not have kitchen facilities. Restroom facilities are located in shared bathhouses, used by all of the cabins in the campground.
Campers must bring their own linens and towels. At the time of this writing cabin rental rates are $55 per night, plus taxes and fees.
Reservations are required and can be made by visiting: www.reserve.floridastateparks.org
There is also limited primitive camping available, but only for organized youth groups.
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Your Favorite Waterfront Bar & Eatery Is Back With An All
RESTAURANT HISTORYThe newly opened Blue Marlin Fish House Restaurant & Adventures is located on the grounds of the original Blue Marlin Smoke House. Owned by the Diefenbach family circa 1938, the former smokehouse was also a trading post where fishing captains could dock their boats along the Oleta River and barter their catch.
In January of 2005, Florida Parks reopened the site as Blue Marlin Fish House. Guests were able to dine on local delicacies while enjoying the flora and fauna of the Oleta River.
In 2020, the Blue Marlin Fish House Restaurant & Adventures reopens its doors once again, under the management of BG Signature. As a significant part of our local history, offering breathtaking water views, fresh food options, and top service, Blue Marlin Fish House Restaurant & Adventures will soon become a beloved Miami landmark.
ABOUT THE CUISINECalling all seafood and American-style food lovers! Blue Marlin Fish House Restaurant & Adventures will offer a diverse menu of local favorites with picturesque views of the Oleta River. You can enjoy a smoked blue marlin, salmon, or mahi-mahi served as a sampler, sandwich, or on a salad. There will also be plenty of delicious chicken and vegan options, all of which can be paired with our microbrew beers, domestic beers, and wines. Come visit and choose from our wide selection of dishes, while relishing in the beautiful scenery.
Existem Jacars No Rio Oleta
Já em 500 aC, o rio abrigava os índios tequesta que acamparam ao longo da costa do rio. O estuário lhes proporcionou uma dieta rica e variada. Quando os espanhóis visitaram pela primeira vez a área que encontraram urso, veado, pantera, lince, lobos, jacarés, peixes -boi e numerosos pássaros e animais pequenos.
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Resources For Visiting Oleta River State Park
Oleta River State Park400 NE 163rd St, North Miami Beach, FL 33160305-919-1846
Day use entrance fee is $6 per vehicle , and public showers are available for day visitors. Pedestrians can access the park for $2, and single-occupant vehicles or motorcycles are $4.
- Oleta River Outdoor Center
- Yelp reviews of the park.
To reserve a cabin: Go to reserve.floridastateparks.org or call , Monday-Friday, from 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. up to 11 months in advance. Minimum stay is two nights. Maximum stay is 14 days. Editors Note: Readers are reporting security issues blocking access to the new web site. In that case, try again with another web browser or make your reservations by phone.
Cabin Fees: In addition to the base rate, which varies from park to park, campers will pay state and local taxes, a $6.70 booking fee and a new $7/day utilities fee for cabins with water and/or electric power.
Cancellations and Changes: Cancellation fee is $17.50, up until the day before the reservation begins. If you cancel on the first day of your reservation, you will also sacrifice your first nights fees. Cancellations are not permitted within 18 days of making the reservation. Any other changes to your reservation will cost $10.
Pets: Not allowed in state park cabins or cabin areas.
So I Have A Confession To Make:
I have this annoyingly dramatic fear of being out in the open water without being able to see whats under me . If Im in a decent sized boat, Im totally fine. A canoe pushing it. A kayak!? Yikes.
But, praise the Lord there were NO sitings of any of those things so, if you visit here with a similar fear, you should be fine.
Kidding! You will be fine. Itll be great. Going through certain areas of the water may seem a little sketchy, but Ive never heard of anything bad happening or scary monster sightings. Ive been kayaking there four or five times now, and each time my fear is beginning to fade awayslowly, but surely.
Once you make your way through the mangroves, and out into the bay youll find the beach and the open water with a pretty view on the other side. If youre out on a Saturday or Sunday early-mid afternoon, the water will likely be a little choppy due to people out on their boats just an FYI.
So, again, I suggest going early to beat the crowd.
But, youll still have fun either way!
Oleta River State Park, youre pretty great! I think Ill be back
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Is Oleta River Freshwater Or Saltwater
The Oleta River was once a freshwater river. Freshwater was fed by the sensitive Biscayne Aquifer. Human alterations, including dredging, canals and other destructive modifications, have changed the natural water flow systems. Today the Oleta River and its wetland communities are saltwater and brackish
Oleta River State Park: The Complete Guide
Historically, Oleta River State Park was a favorite place for early settlers. By the 1890s, pineapple and vegetable farms started popping up all along this fertile river that connected the Everglades to Biscayne Bay. Located only 30 minutes from downtown Miami, Oleta River State Park provides an outdoor oasis for those who want to flee the city and connect with nature.
Mountain bikers, anglers, paddleboarders, and swimmers flock to Florida’s largest urban park to spend a day with family and friends, exploring all the outdoor wonders South Florida has to offer. The park is also a convenient stop for long-distance paddlers tackling the 1,515-mile Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail.
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A Peaceful Natural Oasis
Oleta River State Park is surrounded by cities and concrete, but its surprisingly natural in many ways.
Visitors can almost feel like theyve escaped the city, but not quite. Tall condos are visible on the horizon, and airplane noise, traffic and other city sounds are noticeable throughout the park.
Oleta River State Park is largely waterfront, and sits on the banks of Biscayne Bay and the Oleta River.
Visitors mostly enjoy the state parks natural atmosphere, nice beaches and the calm water.
Oleta River State Park is designated as an Outstanding Florida Waters location.
Features Of The Oleta River Park
A large river flows through the park called Oleta, along its banks there are mangroves, which provide natural parameters for the life of unique plants and animals. In the Oleta River park, all representatives of the flora and fauna that are characteristic of the climate are collected.
Tourists are waiting for exciting walks, but not only! For example, you can rent a long canoe or kayak, rafting in it along the river, admiring the inside of the beauty of mangroves. Sea fishing and swimming are two other leisure activities that Oleta River Park offers. Here is a sandy beach, characterized by excellent decoration and constant service. Drinks, snacks, deck chairs for rent – all this is available here. The total area of the beach is more than 1000 feet.
On the beach square of Oleta RiverPark, you can also prepare a juicy barbecue and have an unforgettable picnic by renting a special house with the necessary communications.
The main feature of Oleta River State Park is the opportunity to ride on an off-road track created specifically for bicycles! On the territory of the special routes are organized with different complexity, the total length of which is 10 miles. For beginners, tracks are made up to 4 miles long. Refined tracks are also provided, which are also suitable for roller skating.
Important! Rescuers do not work on the beach of the park, so you should carefully monitor the children and their loved ones!
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Kayaking At Oleta River State Park
Oleta River State Park is a hidden Miami gem that Nate and I found early last year, tucked away off of Biscayne Blvd . Who knew such a gorgeous park where people are kayaking and canoeing down the river could be hiding on the other side of a busy city boulevard? So happy we found this place and even happier that its a less than 20 minute drive from my apartment and campus.
When Nate and I first visited the park during the semester with our friends Aiden and Audrey, we somehow missed the memo that kayaks and canoes were available to rent there. To be honest, we really didnt know what to expect from this park at first especially since its literally less than a mile off of Biscayne.
Nate and Aiden both have always had a thing for reptilesfinding them, catching them, etcso Audrey and I are always down to tag along on new adventures and finding new places .
This has been the best one so far, hands down.
Although we came unprepared for our first visit, luckily the park has more to offer than just kayaking. The views, the trails, the water, the parties, and a private beach are what make Oleta so great. The park has a few short trails leading to several picnic areas where there are almost always parties/cookouts going on.
Plus, theres a cute little private beach you can go to, which is awesome! You can access it from the trails, or kayaking around to it.
Downsides Of Oleta River State Park
Oleta River State Park is a great spot, but there are some downsides.
The most common complaint about Oleta River State Park are about crowds and traffic, especially on the weekends. Many visitors become especially annoyed when they are barred from re-entering the park after it reaches maximum capacity.
Visitors are advised to arrive early and avoid crowded weekends and holidays, if possible, and if you enjoy peace and quiet!
Another downside of Oleta River State Park is that its waterways, along with all of south Florida, suffer from serious man-made pollution. Sewage leaks are unfortunately common, and water quality can be dangerous at times.
Visitors are advised to always check the most up-to-date water quality notices before swimming, and to remain aware of the local pollution problems.
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Mountain Biking In Oleta River State Park
Oleta River State Park has more than 15 miles of bicycle paths and mountain biking trails.
The bike trails range from mild paved roads to challenging offroad mountain biking trails for any skill level.
There are more than 10 miles of dirt mountain biking trails inside Oleta River State Park. There are routes and trails for beginners, and also advanced trails.
One mountain biker describes the more difficult mountain bike trails in Oleta River State Park as being very technical.
There are many narrow spots with trees on either side, narrow wooden boardwalks, rocks, tree roots and other obstructions to avoid.
There is a surprising number of jumps and elevation variance on the trial system, especially for being in Miami.
Bike rentals are also available through the Oleta River Outdoor Center. Some visitors say that their mountain bike rentals were issued in disrepair visitors are advised to thoroughly inspect rental equipment before using.
The Beaches At Oleta River State Park
The saltwater lagoon at Oleta River State Park offers a relaxing spot to lounge on a nice sand beach, swim, or snorkel in the calm waters.
Note: Visitors should be aware that the beach at Oleta River State Park is located on the waters of the intracoastal waterway, and not in the Atlantic Ocean.
The beach is shaped like a crescent moon and has relatively nice white sand. Other sections of beach in Oleta River State Park can have large amounts of rocks and pebbles on the beach, in addition to sand.
The beach at Oleta River State Park is quite large. The beachfront stretches for approximately 1,000 feet, or approximately 300 meters.
The beach does get crowded during busy times, but most visitors say theyre happy with the overall beach experience.
The water tends to be shallow just off the beach, before descending into deeper water. Small fish and crustaceans can be seen darting about under the water.
The water is usually relatively clear, but can be murky depending on local water conditions.
Overall, the beach at Oleta River State Park is relatively modest compared to other beautiful ocean beaches in Miami.
On the upside, the water at Oleta River State Park is almost always calm because it is protected from waves, unlike other ocean beaches in Miami.
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O Parque Estadual De Blue Springs Tem Jacars
Há sinais para tomar cuidado com jacarés em Gilchrist Blue Springs, mas eles estão principalmente na primavera além da barreira de natação ou em outras partes do parque. A principal área de natação em Gilchrist Blue Springs geralmente está ocupada com pessoas nadando e espirrando, e nenhum jacaré quer estar por perto!
How To Get There
Just 30 minutes from downtown Miami, Oleta River State Park is accessible by car. taxi, bus, or carshare. From the south, take the I-95 Express route to FL-826 East in Golden Glades and follow this route straight to the park. From the north, take Exit 12B off of I-95 North.
It’s best to confirm the most seamless route to Oleta River State Park the night before your visit. Plan your trip accordingly so you miss both bouts of rush hour, as you won’t want to be stuck on the highway before or after a fulfilling outdoor expedition.
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Oleta River State Park Is Open
- Park hours are from 8:00 am until sundown. This park frequently reaches capacity, especially on weekends. If the park closes due to capacity issues, it will not reopen until the following day. Please consider this when planning your visit.
- The main concession building is open
- All of the Bike Trails are open except for the Dragon’s Tail and Gilligan’s Island bike trails.
- The Fishing Pier is closed
- Kayak, Canoe, SUP, pontoon boats and bike rentals are open. Recreation attendants will place rental equipment in the area for guests to pick up after signing rental agreements but no direct contact will be made. Rental equipment will be cleaned with either soap and water or EPA-approved disinfectant containing a minimum of 60% alcohol after each use
- Visitors are expected to maintain distances of at least six feet apart and limit group size to 10 or fewer people
- To reduce risk, cash transactions are limited to exact change.
Kayaking at Oleta River State Park is a great and fun way to explore the park’s amazing natural habitat and see the native Florida vegetation and wildlife.
Either by kayak, canoe or paddle board, even if you have no prior experience, it is a very enjoyable activity and a great way to soak in some nature.
You can paddle the river, the many mangrove-lined creeks within the park, the lagoons as well as the surrounding area that opens up into the Intracoastal Waterway and gives you great views of the skyline and the inlets just accross. See Oleta Park Map here.