A scene at Dixie Lake, one of the small lakes at Lake Louisa State Park
A scene at Dixie Lake, one of the small lakes at Lake Louisa State Park
A view across Lake Louisa at Lake Louisa State Park

Lake Louisa State Park is a 4,500-acre property only a few minutes from Orlando. The park is noted for its scenic landscapes, rolling hills and six beautiful lakes, Lake Louisa being the largest one. Lake Louisa is actually the largest of thirteen lakes strung out like a string of pearls along the Palatlakaha River, a designated Outstanding Florida Waterway.

The most accessible lakes at Lake Louisa State Park are Dixie Lake, Hammond Lake and Lake Louisa itself. All three lakes have access for fishing, kayaking and canoeing (gasoline-powered boats are not allowed).

The twenty cabins for rent at Lake Louisa State Park all overlook Dixie Lake. The cabins will each accommodate up to six people with two bedrooms, two baths and a full kitchen and full dining/living room. Everything is waiting, just bring your food and personal items. There is generally a two-night minimum stay in the cabins on weekends and holidays. Two of the cabins are universally accessible.

Between Dixie and Hammond Lakes is where you'll find the 60-site full-facility campground. The campground is new and the trees are only newly planted so there isn't a lot of shade available, but the sites do offer good lake views and open vistas. The campground also offers full, ADA-compliant restroom and shower facilities.

The park also offers a primitive equestrian camp with a four-horse paddock, water hookups, fire rings, picnic tables, grills and a composting toilet. The equestrian camp is under a longleaf pine canopy and has plenty of pasture land for the horses.

Hikers and backpackers will find almost 30 miles of trails devoted to foot traffic. Equestrians will find more than 15 miles of trails for horses (just make sure to bring your proof of a negative Coggins test with you).

For day-use visitors, Lake Louisa State Park is open from 8 am until sunset, every day of the year. Campers who plan to arrive after sunset need to call the day of arrival and get instructions and the gate combination.

To get there: Lake Louisa State Park is located about seven miles south of State Road 50 on US Highway 27.