Fern Forest


Fern Forest


The Fern Forest Nature Center in Coconut Creek is the last remnant of what used to be a Cypress Creek flood-way and Hammock. The 247.1-acrewilderness land is full of diverse plant communities all influenced by different soil types, differences in elevation and bedrock exposure as well as human activities. In 1979, the land was purchased by Broward County from the Palm Aire Development Corporation, as a new center aimed at preserving the unique botanical features of the site. In 1985, the Fern Forest Park was finally opened to the public as a passive recreation center, an educational center and as a preservative of the natural environment.

The Entrance Boardwalk 

Your walk at the Fern Forest Nature Center in Coconut Creek starts right from the parking lot, which leads up to the shaded benches next to a kiosk having a detailed map of the park. Rising upwards, this boardwalk is surrounded by a thicket of wild tamarind, pond apple and sea myrtle. A high canopy provided by the Laurel Oaks covers the sidewalk. As you head towards the nature center, you will notice a cypress stump, a reminder of the huge trees that once lined in the Cypress Creek.

The Cypress Creek

The entrance boardwalk runs parallels to the Cypress Creek, which is covered by a dense layer of ferns. As you walk down the creek’s boardwalk, you will notice the deeply eroded stony and rocky banks of the creek. Also, you will not fail to see the undercut with small caves.

The Royal Fern Hall

Covering a total of 2,343 square feet, this Royal Fern Hall has an assembly hall with a buffet corner located on the second floor of the building and a warming kitchen. The buffet corner is a perfect spot for holding all your receptions, meeting amongst other events while enjoying the scenic view of the forest.

The Exhibit Hall

This hall has informative displays of the park's natural and historical history alongside an array of live native reptiles.

The Picnic Area

Fern Forest Nature Center has six picnic tables available to the public on a first-come, first served basis. However, grills and fires are not permitted.

The Maple Walk 

This is the final half-mile walk of the Creek and will likely to get your feet wet due to the swamp. Straight ahead of you, there is a slippery slab of limestone, which leads you deep into the muck of the cypress slough. If you are planning on visiting the place during a rainy season, you’d like to avoid this path as it is usually covered entirely by water. During the summer, you may just find mud and a slippery path full of paddles.

Fern Forest Nature Center in Coconut Creek operates between 8am and 6pm with the trails closing at 5pm. Entrance to this beautiful park is absolutely free. The Picnic Shelter at the creek has a maximum seating capacity of 40 people. For tourists, the park has various programs for night hikes, volunteer projects; nature walks among many others.

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