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

Gators And Eagles And Birding! Oh My!

Alligator Alley is popular with international nature photographers.

— Tabitha B

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.

A trip wouldn't be complete without an alligator sighting, which is quite common and can be safely done from the preserve's pier, shoreline, or the infamous Alligator Alley.

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
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Contact Info

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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.

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Circle B Bar Reserve Events in March


5 Star Rating

My wife and I visit often to see the wildlife and enjoy a pleasant walk. Also has a nature center with programs to learn more about the area, the flora and the fauna. Read Full Review

5 Star Rating

Of the many wildlife preserves we visited during our monthlong visit to Florida Circle B Bar stands head and shoulders above the rest. Wonderful wildlife with wonderful opportunities to photograph a... Read Full Review

5 Star Rating

Excellent place to enjoy nature and all sorts of wildlife. Lots of trails to navigate. Great place to spend a couple hours while being in the middle of all of nature's beauty. Read Full Review

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