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Silver Springs

Trip Planner USA  /  Florida  /  Silver Springs
(2.9/5 based on 1,200+ reviews for 5 attractions)
Things to do: nature, wildlife areas, theme parks
Silver Springs is a U.S. Unincorporated community and the site of aquatic springs in Marion County, Florida. The springs are one of the largest artesian spring formations in the world, producing nearly 550 million gallons of crystal-clear water daily. Silver Springs forms the headwaters of the Silver River, the largest tributary on the Ocklawaha River, a part of the St. Johns River system. The springs were designated a National Natural Landmark in 1971.One of Florida's first tourist attractions, the springs drew visitors even before the U.S. Civil War. Glass bottom boats have been a popular way to see the 242 acre complex. A small amusement park with various animals, a concert stage, carousel and exhibits also developed. As the land around the springs developed, fertilizer and septic tank runoff carrying nitrate pollution has caused brown algae to cloud the springs, reducing visibility and fish populations. Declining attendance and profits have led the operators to drop their lease and end the amusements at the park. Plans for the Adena Springs Ranch nearby and its water pumping proposals are also a concern.
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