If you enjoy historic towns with southern charm, you should spend some time in Micanopy, Florida’s oldest inland town, circa 1780. Micanopy, located 6 miles off of I-75 and 12 miles south of Gainesville, is a great place to relax and get off the beaten path. The town is also accessible from S.R. 441, the fabled road on the Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ American Girl, which runs right through the middle of Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park.
Cholokka Boulevard, Micanopy’s main street is Old Florida at its best, lined with huge oak trees draped in Spanish moss and historic storefronts. We recommend beginning your day with coffee and baked goods from Mosswood Farm Store and Bake House then working your way up the street, making sure to take the time to treasure hunt for unique gifts, books, antiques and more.
Bonus: Find plenty of Instagram worthy spots during your adventure #micanopyflorida
After strolling Micanopy’s main street, check-in to a room at the circa 1845 Herlong Mansion Bed & Breakfast. Conclude your day with mouthwatering food from the original Blue Highway Pizzeria or from one of the top BBQ eateries in Florida as featured in Southern Living Magazine, Pearl’s Country Store and Barbecue. And after a good night of rest and a 3-course breakfast from the Herlong, venture out into the great outdoors and explore all that Micanopy has to offer.
Pro Tip: Micanopy main street establishments begin to open around 10 a.m. and close around 5 p.m.
The list of restaurants is small but mighty. They are quaint, welcoming, and affordable, and serve food that is both comforting and delightful.
Blue Highway Pizzeria, Coffee and Cream, Mosswood Farm Store and Bake House, Old Florida Café, The Pearl Country Store and Barbecue in Micanopy, or explore The Yearling Restaurant in nearby Cross Creek and the Island Grove Wine Company in Hawthorne.
Antique City Mall, Antiques Plus, Cottage Antiques, Dakota Mercantile, Delectable Collectibles, Emmerson’s Antiques Books and Collectibles, Gallery Under the Oaks, House of Hirsch, Lost Ark Antiques, Lotus and Buddha Art Collective and Coffee House, Micanopy Outpost, Mott-May Gallery, Stage Coach Stop, Swamp Lily Mercantile, The Shop, The Market, The Shady Oak Gallery & Studio, Wren Wood Antiques
State Parks and Trails
Paynes Prairie has an abundance of wildlife, including bison, wild horses, alligators, and 300 species of birds. You can visit the outlook or observation tower, enjoy one of the eight trails, or bike the 16-mile Gainesville-Hawthorne Rails to Trails paved path.
Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park is the 1930’s homestead of the author of “The Yearling.”
Just north of Micanopy’s main street, you will find two beautiful and easy trails to hike, the Native American Heritage Preserve and Tuscawilla Preserve. And a few miles out of the town is Barr Hammock Preserve, offering 5,719 acres of vastness and enjoyable hiking trails.