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Hillsborough River State Park
IUCN Category V (Protected Landscape/Seascape)

Hillsborough River
Location Hillsborough County, Florida
Nearest city Tampa and Zephyrhills
Coordinates 28°06′14″N 82°16′41″W / 28.10389°N 82.27806°W / 28.10389; -82.27806Coordinates: 28°06′14″N 82°16′41″W / 28.10389°N 82.27806°W / 28.10389; -82.27806
Area 3,383 acres
Established 1935
Governing body Florida Department of Environmental Protection

Hillsborough River State Park is located in the northeast corner of Hillsborough County, Florida near Zephyrhills. It is a popular park due to its proximity to the city of Tampa.

Popular activities include fishing, canoeing, kayaking, picnicking, camping, birding, and nature photography. The park also has a swimming pool, camping, and a restaurant and gift shop. Canoes and bicycles can be rented at the park.

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Environment

Much of the park is a live oak hammock due to its proximity to the river. Certain sections are swampy, but much of the forest surrounding the river is elevated, so floods are not regular. Land near the entrance of the park consists of pine trees and saw palmettos.

History

Hillsborough River State Park is one of the eight original Florida State Parks created in 1938. The park is cleaved into two halves by a swiftly flowing section of the Hillsborough River. This section of the river is noted for having several clusters of small rapids; it is one of the few rivers in Florida to have a system of rapids.

Also located on park land is a replica of Fort Foster, which was originally built in 1837 during the Second Seminole War. Tours of the fort are given on weekends, with many artifacts on display from Florida's pioneer history.

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