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Jefferson County

Jefferson at a Glance

Coastal Cities

None

Popular Spot

Florida National Scenic Trail

Sandy Beaches

0 miles

Public Accesses

0

Great Florida Birding & Wildlife Trail

0 sites

State Parks & Lands

Acres

Letchworth-Love Mounds Archaeological State Park

188

St. Marks River Preserve State Park

2,590

Aucilla Wildlife Management Area (Taylor)

47,622

Big Bend Seagrasses Aquatic Preserve (Wakulla, Dixie, Levy, Taylor)

982,000

Middle Aucilla Conservation Area (Madison, Taylor)

9,129

Upper Aucilla Conservation Area (Madison)

2,864

Wacissa Conservation Area

1,060

Federal Lands

Acres

St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge (Wakulla, Taylor)

69,215

Bays & Inlets

Apalachee Bay

Rivers & Paddling Trails

St. Marks, Aucilla & Wacissa rivers, Big Bend Saltwater Paddling Trail, Florida Circumnavigational Saltwater Paddling Trail, Gulf Intracoastal Waterway

Jefferson County, named for President Thomas Jefferson, has the state's shortest coastline, no stop lights and is the only county that touches Georgia and the Gulf of Mexico. Its one incorporated city, Monticello, is 23 miles east of Tallahassee. Its five-mile coast is wilderness, sanctuaries and salt marsh - with no beaches or paved roads.

The primary water recreation is canoeing on the Aucilla and Wacissa rivers. The swift Aucilla, a moderate-to-strenuous canoe trail recommended for the experienced, shapes most of the county's eastern boundary. It flows in and out of underground sinkholes several times before joining the Wacissa, a clear, spring-fed river, inviting to beginners. Dense woodlands border its sides where wading birds can be seen searching for food.

Other popular water activities include fishing the many sinkholes and river rises, hiking along the Florida National Scenic Trail and bird-watching.

More than 250,000 people visit St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge annually. Established in 1931, it is one of the oldest national wildlife refuges, covering 69,215 acres of coastal marsh, islands, tidal creeks and estuaries in three counties. It is a wintering habitat for migratory birds and home to a diverse community of plants and animals. The annual October Monarch Butterfly Festival showcases the four-inch orange and black butterflies that migrate from the Midwest to central Mexico.

The state's largest aquatic preserve, the Big Bend Seagrasses Aquatic Preserve protects seagrasses, a wide variety of sea and shore birds, and important commercial shellfish - clams, oysters, pink shrimp, blue crab and the most stable population of bay scallops in Florida. It is a popular destination during scallop season. The vast Aucilla Wildlife Management Area, mostly in Jefferson County, protects 200 coastal miles of conservation lands, wildlife habitats and fisheries.

Other things to do in Jefferson County include bicycling, hunting, the annual Watermelon Festival, guided tours of the Historic District of Monticello, visiting the 1858 Lloyd Railroad Station (the oldest brick railroad station in Florida) and the Jefferson County Historical Museum in Monticello with archaeological replicas from the Aucilla River Prehistory Project.

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Last Modified:
June 12, 2018 - 11:01am

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