Lake Monroe County Park
Lake Monroe Park is one of my favorite spots to explore nature and I actually found it by accident when I was hiking the trail from Gemini Springs. The park is beautiful, well maintained with something for everyone. At the entrance there is a kid's playground, picnic pavilion, volleyball court, grills and tables.
Fishing is excellent from the piers and the boat ramp along the river is set back a bit and doesn't seem near as crowded as some other boat ramps I've seen. It's real easy coming and going here. You can't miss the pier---it's guarded by a large concrete alligator which provides a terrific photo opportunity.
Further into the park there is another parking area with restrooms and a bike rack. This is where the trail head is that leads to Gemini Springs Park, and boy is it a beautiful trek!
My joy is birding ever since I got hooked four years ago. The experience at Lake Monroe Park is really nice, and with so much to see and hear (tip#1), birds tend to be more vocal in the morning it's a great sensory trip as you walk along the paved trails and boardwalks over the marsh and through the woodlands.
My wife and I really enjoy camping and love to find new places to explore. Camping is an inexpensive way to be really close to nature while having the bonus of park amenities whether it's local or cross country. Lake Monroe Park has really nice sites for tent and RV camping with electricity and water hookups so you don't have to rough it too much.
Whether you're camping, fishing, or planning a family outing, this is a place the entire family can enjoy. And, (tip#2), don't let the booth at the entrance fool you, it is free to get in!