St. Johns County offers horseback riding on approximately 30 miles of our 41.1 mile coastline. County Government is responsible for abiding by a Habitat Conservation Plan and Incidental Take Permit through the US Fish and Wildlife Service to protect endangered and threatened species like sea turtles. In keeping with that plan, a special permit is required to ride horses on St. Johns County beaches. St. Johns County Special Use Permit.
The Florida Trailtrotter Program
Have you wanted to explore on horseback but haven’t had the opportunity? This is your ticket to a grand tour of Florida’s State Forests. The best way to learn about a state forest is to experience it first hand, and this is what the Florida State Forests Trailtrotter Program is all about.
Princess Place Preserve with its 1500 pristine acres, attracts nature enthusiasts from near and far. The preserve is a popular spot for equestrian enthusiasts. With an equestrian campsite and plenty of riding trails it is easy to embrace nature while enjoying a ride. Visit for a glimpse of old Florida. More Information.
Welaka State Forest
Welaka State Forest is located approximately 17 miles south of Palatka, off of U.S. Highway 17. The forest is on State Road 309, 1 mile south of the town of Welaka. The Sandhill Horse trail was established for equestrian use as well as hiking. All horses must have proof of current negative Coggins Test results when on state lands. Welaka State Forest also manages a 72-horse stable, training arenas and show horse arena, which are all available for rental. More Information.