Life Is Better on the Wekiva River

Designated National Wild & Scenic River

Plan Your River Adventure

Life Is Better on the Wekiva River

The Wekiva River System

The Wekiva River System is located within central Florida, including parts of Lake, Orange, and Seminole counties. The river system is just north of Orlando, one of Florida’s principal metropolitan areas with a rapidly growing population. The system is unique with its second magnitude springs, blackwater streams, creeks, runs, and more. It is a riverine oasis in this urbanized area of central Florida.

National Wild & Scenic River System Designation

The Wekiva River together with Wekiwa Springs Run, Rock Springs Run and Black Water Creek were designated by the United States Congress as a National Wild and Scenic River in October 2000. The Wild and Scenic Rivers Act states that in order for a river to be eligible for designation it must be “free-flowing” and must possess one or more “outstandingly remarkable” values.

Our 5 Outstanding Remarkable Values:
  • Scenic
  • Recreation
  • Wildlife and Habitat
  • Water Quality and Quantity
  • Historic and Cultural Resources

Wekiva River News & Events

No matter which outdoor adventure you & your family are craving, the Wekiva River has something for everyone.


Manatees in the Wekiva River

Documenting manatee sightings is important and provides important data for researchers as they are trying to further understand how manatees are using the Wekiva River. Save the Manatee Club has an online form where citizens can easily report sightings and upload photos or videos. In the summer of 2019 and 2020 several manatees were sighted in the Wekiva River that proved to be known individuals from Blue Spring! Among them were ‘Mata Hari’ and her calf, who made it all the way up to the Wekiva head spring, ‘Peyton’ and her calf who visited Wekiva Island, ‘Marge’ who may have given birth to her calf in a resident’s canal, and ‘Jocie’ with her small calf.


Spring Cleaning at the Wekiva River Aquatic Preserve Office

Spring cleaning work day at the Wekiva River Aquatic Preserve office. We love our volunteers!


Friends of the Wekiva River (FOWR) Paddle Trip- Emerald Cut

Date: October 28, 2021

Join FOWR to paddle Emerald Cut! Reservations are required!
Paddle the section of Rock Springs Run known as Emerald Cut! Together with guides Jim Adamski, President of Friends of the Wekiva River, and Ashley Konon, River Ambassador for the Wekiva Wild and Scenic River, you will travel upstream on the beautiful waters of Rock Springs.


Discover the Wekiva Wild & Scenic River

The Wekiva River system is a nationally treasured landscape and outstanding scenic resource that offers many opportunities to experience a unique part of natural Florida. Please help us to enjoy and protect this resource with our local “Paddle Wekiva” guide to canoeing and kayaking opportunities all along our beautiful river system.

How Do YOU River?

Fishing Areas

Kayaking & Canoeing

Bird Watching

Learning Resources

Hiking Trails

Biking Trails

Picnic Areas

Camping Sites

Wekiva River Management Plan

The Wekiva Wild and Scenic River System Management Plan serves as the basis for protecting a designated river’s values to ensure the river will be protected in perpetuity for future generations to enjoy. The Management Plan was developed by the Wekiva River System Advisory Management Committee (AMC) in collaboration with the National Park Service (NPS) to fulfill this enabling legislation requirement.

Help Us Protect The Wekiva River

River Ambassadors fill critical roles on behalf of the Wekiva Wild and Scenic River System Management Advisory Committee, providing essential visitor services and supporting an “on the water” stewardship program. These vounteer positions include:

  • Education & Outreach
  • River Patrol
  • Promotion of Stewardship
  • Resource Management