Circle B Bar Reserve

There was a time when cattle and cowboys roamed Circle B Bar Reserve, but what was once a functioning cattle ranch is now recognized by USA Today Travel as one of the 51 Great Places to See Wildlife.

From Cattle Call to Call of the Wild

It is considered one of the best places for birding in Central Florida as a result of the Banana Creek marsh system. In a nutshell: don’t visit the reserve without your camera, your Instagram followers will thank you.

Remnants of the cattle ranch days, such as pens and barns, still remain on the property and serve as a rustic backdrop for many a family and senior portraits.

Circle B Bar Reserve
Circle B Bar Reserve

Something For Everyone

If you like options, or have picky traveling partners, you’ll be relieved to know that Circle B Bar Reserve offers options for everyone in your family. Bicycling, horseback riding, fishing, hiking, birding and picnicking are all encouraged. And you can’t go wrong with a simple quiet walk.

Circle B Bar Reserve
Circle B Bar Reserve


Don’t forget your logbook and binoculars - it’s nothing to spot an osprey feeding its young, eagle soaring, or Anhinga dive-bombing a fish when out and about at Circle B Bar Reserve. The 1,267-acre property features several diverse habitats including freshwater marshes, hardwood swamps, oak hammocks, creeks and lakes, which are home to a wide variety of ducks, shorebirds, wading birds, native and migrant landbirds, ospreys, bald eagles, and to more than 45-species of butterflies.

If Your Shoes WEREN’T made for Walking

Look, there is no shame in not having the desire to hike the beautiful, wilderness of Circle B Bar Reserve, whether it be a physical disability, Jet Lag or summer heat that’s ailing you. Thankfully, there is a way to enjoy the beauty of the reserve AND gain a little more knowledge while you’re at it: a free tram tour. Yep, you can sit while a staff member discusses the unique habitats you encounter, and still get ample wildlife sightings and photo opportunities. As a bonus, the moving tram provides a gentle breeze that is oh, so relaxing.

Nature Discovery Center at Circle B Bar Reserve
Nature Discovery Center at Circle B Bar Reserve

Polk Nature Discovery Center

Circle B Bar Reserve isn’t your run-of-the-mill reserve. The air-conditioned Polk Nature Discovery Center is loaded with a life-size ecosystem and animal reproductions that entertain, educate, and engage young minds.

The Discovery Center is also the hub for information about the preserve. Stop in for trail maps and information about the best wildlife viewing areas before heading out for your adventure, and you'll be sure to impress your friends and family.

Important Note: Circle B Bar Reserve is a nature reserve. Please help protect the resident wildlife by following some basic rules while visiting. NO pets, NO Balloons and NO Music. Enjoy what nature has to offer on its own.

Address / Location

4399 Winter Lake Rd
Lakeland, FL 33803
Get Directions

Contact Info

Visit Website

Hours of Operation

Open Daily Dawn - Dusk
Discovery Center: Tuesday - Saturday 9:00 - 4:00 p.m.
Discovery Center: Sunday Noon - 4:00 p.m.

Latest Article


Circle B Bar Reserve Events in March


5 Star Rating

a gem in polk county. great trails into recovering habitat. all the usual water birds, quiet, good parking. need more benches of any type , to rest a bit while on trail. Read Full Review

5 Star Rating

A natural setting in Florida with numerous birds, alligators and other wildlife. This is NOT a Zoo, no commercialization and its free. No fences, no bars, just you and Mother Nature. Miles of... Read Full Review

4 Star Rating

So, I was very surprised when we arrived at all the cars! I took a look at the people that were whizzing by us and I knew theses were not visitors , but locals! Please don't get the wrong idea : this... Read Full Review

Loading map...