Ft. Lauderdale’s “Central Park” was gifted to the city by Hugh Taylor Birch for whom this urban oasis is named.
The ocean-side city of Fort Lauderdale has a population density of 4,761 people per square mile. However, residents are fortunate to have their own slice of wilderness amid the highly developed Miami metro area. Hugh Taylor Birch is the city’s own Central Park, complete with gopher tortoises and boat access from the intracoastal waterway. It’s easy to see why Hugh Taylor Birch wanted to preserve his estate for future generations to enjoy—it’s an oasis perfect for relaxation and exercise. The park is a vibrant center for the community of Fort Lauderdale, and residents take pleasure in activities from rollerblading to reading under the shade of palms and oaks.
Visitors can access the beach via the pedestrian tunnel under A1A. Picnic areas overlook the channel; pavilions with water and electricity are available for rental. A group/youth campground is available to organized groups. The Terramar Visitor Center features displays regarding the area's natural and cultural history.
This park is an oasis in the midst of Ft. Lauderdale. There’s hiking, kayaking, beach access, and even a nice little restaurant on premises. There’s some noise of course, but it’s still lovely. The kayaking trail in the lake is short but nice for a quick paddle. Lots of turtles and fish visible in the water. I wouldn’t travel far to visit, but come here often as it’s close to home. There’s camping overlooking the intercoastal waterway, but the sites are wide open with no privacy next to the access road. Get there early as parking fills up quickly during peak times.