Standard (tent/RV)
Tent Cabin
RV Sites
Tent Sites
Fires Allowed
Pets Allowed
Drinking Water
About Paynes Prairie State Park
Drive In
Walk In
Hike In
Boat In
ADA Accessible
Alcohol Allowed
Drinking Water
Electric Hookups
Fires Allowed
Firewood Available
Pets Allowed
Phone Service
Picnic Table
Sanitary Dump
Sewer Hookups
Trash Available
Water Hookups
Paynes Prairie State Park is located in Florida
29.519 N
-82.298 W
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11 Reviews of Paynes Prairie State Park
Well Kept and Friendly Staff

Definitely one of the more popular destinations in the area because of the buffalo and wild horses, so this park camping and RV parking gets a lot of attention from rangers. The facilities are very clean and staff are courteous, grounds are well-kept and events (like baby alligator educational sessions) are above-par.

Not their fault (the state sets pricing) but primitive campsites are the same price as reserved ones with hookups, $18.

There is plenty of hiking in the park, but it’s also close to other inexpensive trails around Gainesville.

Very nice affordable campground

Very close to the University of Florida. Nice campground recently renovated.


Nice campground. Clean and well maintained. Very shady site, but tons of mosquitoes. We went in late October. Nice preserve to walk or bike to. Observation tower. Saw wild horses in the prairie. Visitor’s Center very helpful with information.

Gorgeous Wildlife

Many opportunities to spot wildlife close by. The camp is frequented by college students. Bathrooms are clean. Plenty of hiking to be found. Buffalo, deer, eagles, alligators, owls….Visit Sweetwater.

My favorite place!

People ask me my favorite place camping and this place is my answer. We got to see so many different animals. The park is a bit different than others, you drive outside the park to different locations within the park.

Our first night camping was difficult to sleep because of our college camping neighbors. They had a great time, but it was an isolated incident. Besides that, we got to see so many animals. The park is still damaged from hurricane Irma.

I highly recommend this state park!

Beautiful. Well kept, plenty of wildlife and trails. Buffalo, wild horses

Well kept, clean bathhouses, bring bug spray

Very peaceful and quiet

This campground is awesome. Every site is shaded with a fire pit. Bathrooms are very clean. However it is extremely dark at night since it is back in the wood. Both RV and tents site are great. Great place for folks that enjoy the outdoor.

A lot of wildlife!

This park has 8 trails for hiking, biking and horseback riding. We were able to see wild horses, bisons, snakes and gators. Great for fishing and kayaking.

Wild Horses!

I would say that most people who go camping like the outdoors and love the wildlife. Well I would say my favorite part was the wild horses that roamed the wetlands. I happened to go when there was a new born calf and oh my goodness was he cute! You can literally walk along the wetland trail and stand right next to a horse! They don"t approach you (and I wouldn't recommend doing so either) but it definitely got my blood pumping being next to such a majestic creature. Wild bison also roam the prairie, but I did not see any while I was there. The visitor center would have an update of what animals were viewed most recently and they had a variety of activities to do inside (for kids to!). I especially like the tower that looked over the wetlands.

The campsites were a good size however unlike a lot of places, you could not park your car directly in your site. There were 4-5 sites in a group and parking was in a "lot" of 7-8 spaces in front of the sites. This was a little inconvenient for unpacking and repacking purposes. Also, if you have a car tent (or sleep in your car), you would not have been able to use it because of this.

There were also good trails that went through the campground for hiking and biking (and like I mentioned above, a beautiful trail along the prairie. Dogs were not allowed on this trail). A nearby lake allowed for fishing and kayaking, canoeing and boating.

Beautiful wetlands

Always amazing. See previous review.