Parks, Cultural Resources & Recreation

Facilities


The City of Palatka Parks and Recreation Department proudly offers a wide range of parks, facilities, and programs designed to serve the needs of the community. These facilities include:
  • Riverfront amphitheater
  • Four (4) ball fields
  • Fishing piers
  • Transient and day boat slips
  • Playgrounds
  • Riverfront Park
  • Tennis courts
  • Basketball courts
  • Cycling and walking trails
  • Two (2) cultural and environmental education centers
  • Historical Museum
Statue on Guard
In addition to our recreation facilities, Palatka’s central location provides fishermen, kayakers, and boaters safe and convenient access to the beautiful St. Johns River. The St. Johns River winds and narrows to the south of Palatka and passes through large areas of protected natural areas making it easy to enjoy the wildlife of Florida’s Freshwater Coast.


Launching and Mooring Facilities


Access to the smaller undisturbed tributary waters can be found just south of Palatka. The city currently has launching and mooring facilities located within the Riverfront Park at:
301 River St.
Palatka, FL 32177
For more information on additional public launch facilities in the Palatka and Putnam County Area please visit the Putnam County Boat Ramps Page.

St. Johns River Center
The center serves as an educational resource regarding the ecological significance of wetlands, the conservation and sustainability of these areas and the need for a balanced approach to usage among all communities.

The purpose of the center is to:
  • celebrate the unique and varied ecosystems of the St. Johns River and its related wetlands areas;
  • educate the general public, especially students, about the physical characteristics and ecology of the St. Johns River wetlands areas;
  • interpret  the natural contribution of these wetlands areas to ecological diversity in terms of the St. Johns River system’s flora, fauna, lakes, rivers and streams;
  • relate the connection between the river system and its wetlands to the development of the unique history, culture, recreation, commerce and industry of our people.
  • curricula for the center is based on current, peer reviewed science, presented from a point of view which balances environmental protection with private property rights and the needs for commercial, industrial and other economic development.

Located 102 North First Street in Palatka, the center serves as a prominent location for promoting study of area wetlands by visitors, tourists, academics and others interested in our natural environment.

Water Works Environmental Education Center

The Water Works Environmental  Education Center (WWEEC) is owned by the City of Palatka.  The Water Works Committee and volunteers build trails, conduct tours, host field trips and meet regularly to review goals and progress. 


The WWEEC is open to the public every Wednesday (from 8:00a.m. – noon) and the 1st Sunday afternoon of each month (1:30p.m.—5p.m.) with volunteers from the Water Works Advisory Group available at the WW Building to answer questions and give guided tours of the facility.

The WWEEC supports the Putnam County and William Bartram trails network by acting as a trail hub, providing access to WW nature trails, identifying Bartram plants through appropriate signage, and displaying exhibits that describe William Bartram’s contribution to natural history exploration of the St. Johns River area.


Historic Bronson Mulholland House and Putnam County Historical Museum
content coming soon

Bartram Trail


The Riverfront Park also serves as the Trailhead for the Bartram Trail. The Bartram Trail in Putnam County was formed in order to re-establish the sites of William Bartram’s travels in our region and make them accessible via waterway, hiking, biking, and driving routes. William Bartram, a botanist, artist, naturalist, humanist, and author, explored the area along the St. Johns River in Putnam County during his excursions into Florida in the late 1700s.

The heart of William Bartram’s book "Travels" documents our local flora and fauna, and records his colorful encounters with local traders and native tribes. His work has great poetic, historical, and educational value. Our staff is dedicated to providing the best possible activities and facilities for your enjoyment. If you need assistance in locating a particular park, please contact our staff at 386-329-0103.

Other Amenities


Palatka is also home to the Ravine State Gardens, which can be visited year round. In a continuous effort to improve our services, we encourage you to contact us with questions, comments, and concerns.