The Two Best Places to Commune with Nature in Carrollwood and Citrus Park FL

In Tampa, Florida it's usually hot and sunny. For many, that means time to enjoy the beautiful weather and the famous Florida sunshine. The question often is where to go? There are many local parks and trails to enjoy the natural surroundings near your chiropractic office in the Carrollwood and Citrus Park area of Tampa.

One of my favorite natural landscapes to enjoy is the Upper Tampa Bay Trail. It is a 14 mile long paved trail winding through Lutz, Odessa, Carrollwood, Citrus Park, and Town and Country. The trail is well maintained, accessible all year long, and available for pedestrians, bikes, and dogs on leashes. It's also great for strollers and groups of walkers.

In my opinion, this is an amazing trail in the west part of Tampa. It makes for an excellent hike and allows you to escape the city without having to drive a long distance. There are several parks along the trail that provide opportunity for further exploration. The trail is perfect for walking, running, cycling, or roller blading. It has a mix of sun and shade, which provides cool relief in the Florida heat. There are a few places with water available along the trail.

Most of the trail is flat with the exception of a bridge that crosses Citrus Park Drive and Gunn Hwy. This is a nice lookout spot for kids or those young at heart whom may want to watch the world pass by below.

There are a few parking areas available that have access to the trail and some have a small fee to park.  There is a small lot just south of Alonso High School on Montague which is the start of the trail. There's another larger parking lot on Waters Avenue that offers picnic tables and restrooms. Here you will find a small underpass along the creek which is a nice fishing spot. Other small parking areas are dotted along the trail through Citrus Park. If you're looking for a getaway from the city while not actually leaving the city and you want a nice smooth path, this trail is for you.

My other favorite natural landscape in the area is Lake Rogers Park. Located in the northwest side of the greater Carrollwood area, this is a pristine escape into the natural world. Lake Rogers is one of the largest lakes in Hillsborough county and this park offers well-maintained trails that wind through the forest and around the lake. Often considered one of Hillsborough County's best kept secrets, this park is visited by adults and children who enjoy getting away from the city and finding peace in nature.

These trails are unpaved so this area is best for hikers, trail running, mountain biking, and families that can walk on uneven surfaces. There is a lovely loop around the lake that takes you through open fields and shady forests. The lake views on this trail are amazing. There are also picnic tables here and there along the trail with a few water stations. There is also a canoe launch which makes it easy to go for a relaxing canoe or kayak paddle on this beautiful lake. There is a well-maintained parking lot with a $2 fee. Well worth it to enjoy this gem of a park!