Homosassa, Florida is a small fishing community in Citrus County. The population was 2,578 in the 2010 census. Old Homosassa is the historic area of Homosassa on both sides of the Homosassa River. There are several resorts, waterfront restaurants, fishing charters, scalloping charters, and two State Parks: the Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park and the Yulee Sugar Mill Ruins in Old Homosassa. There is a boat ramp to access Homosassa River at the end of West Yulee Drive, a boat parking area, and a Veterans Memorial in the Old Homosassa area. Florida Senator David W. Yulee lived in Homosassa until the Civil War.
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On a quiet corner of the Homosassa River two local families have banded together celebrating “Old Florida” with a goal of preserving the tradition of Southern gentility, a culture of kindness and grace that has been disappearing all too quickly in America. Just a few miles west of U.S. 19… Read More
Originally published in 2010. Feature image by Robin Draper. Monkey Island is one of the most unique sights along Florida’s Nature Coast. A small island in the Homosassa River, easily seen from the Homosassa Riverside Resort, Monkey Island began as a solution to a sticky problem in neighboring Weeki Wachee,… Read More
Folks who love snatching up live, fresh bay scallops from the Nature Coast’s abundant waters are making reservations for the 2021 bay scallop season. Slated July 1 through Sept. 24, Citrus County’s bay scallop harvesting season brings in waves of snorkelers from all over, searching for the tasty treat that… Read More
Is your Rottweiler rambunctious? Is your poodle depressed? Perhaps they just need to “paws” and reflect. Dogs put on a happy face for their owners, but experts say they are actually more vulnerable to mental or emotional stress than humans, triggering any number of physiological ailments. One method of… Read More
Darkened waters have made some tough conditions for late season scalloping. There is a band of semi clean water that is just west of the Bird Rack and runs south to the Chassahowitzka Tripod that is holding some big scallops for those looking for one of the last trips of… Read More
Starting September 1, you can legally harvest snook on the Big Bend and north of the Anclote River. Anglers must have a snook stamp (endorsement). The snook slot is 28″ to 33″ and one per angler. If you are on a for-hire charter, the captain and crew do not count. Read More
Dark waters have given up good numbers of trout. The fish are in 3 to 5 foot of water and hitting on popping cork rigs with a MirrOlure LiL’ John in watermelon red flake on a 1/8 oz. red jighead. The bite is better on a out going tide and… Read More
Tropical rains have cooled the Gulf waters for some good trout fishing. As we move toward fall, look for the trout bite to be best on the outgoing tide, and popping cork rigs are the best way to go. Some of my favorite colors are watermelon red flake, glow gold rush, golden… Read More
Darkened waters from last week’s rain event have made it a little harder to see the scallops and dropped our water temperatures about 5 degrees. On a recent scallop trip we were out west of the St. Martins Keys with limited success, but I believe heading out deeper would have given better… Read More
In August there are two things that I expect, rain and heat. Sorry, forgot one thing, good fishing for species that enjoy hot water. On the Big Bend, I’ve talked with guides all the way north to Steinhatchee and snook are a targeted fish. That was unheard of 7… Read More
Not much has changed from last week except the tides. Look for some great mangrove snapper fishing on the nearshore rocks in 10 to 12 feet of water. High-profile rocks nearshore will hold some good fish but this past week some of my best mangos have come from areas I’ve… Read More
Citrus County Animal Services (CCAS) is seeking community support after receiving a large number of animals from a local cruelty case. On Wednesday, July 14, 2021, the Citrus County Sheriff’s Office (CCSO) and CCAS recovered twenty-one dogs, twenty-seven cats, six various species of birds, five rabbits, one turtle, and one… Read More
Homosassa River Alliance Urges Citrus County to add Needed Deputies to patrol its Waterways Hello Citrus County Commissioners., It is hard to believe that the Commission turned down the Sheriff’s request for additional funding to add needed deputies to patrol our waterways, yet the T.D.C. will continue to spend thousands of… Read More
Coming up on this weekend’s full moon is a good bite from one of my favorite fish to catch. The Big Bend’s inshore mangrove snapper don’t grow as big as our offshore snapper, but there are days I’ve been surprised on light tackle. Mangrove snapper can turn on into a… Read More
One of my favorite ways to stay cool and harvest one of my favorite meals happens during the summer. Scalloping has been better than last year and people have had no problem getting their limit of them just west of the St. Martins Keys in Homosassa – and I’ve heard good… Read More
As I write this report, we are on the cusp of a Tropical Storm that may do a little dance along the Big Bend. From past weather events like this one, I’ve found that the fishing can be very good after the storm when it is safe to head back to the… Read More
Nestled in heavy forest between US 19 and the Gulf of Mexico is a magical area of Citrus County: Old Homosassa.
Watered by several spring fed rivers, Citrus County residents enjoy the area’s great natural beauty, small town charm and myriad of outdoor activities.
Homosassa is the home of the Yulee Sugar Mill State Park, Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs State Wildlife Park, Monkey Island, and Old Homosassa. A delightful fishing village, Homosassa has been considered a sports lover’s paradise since the early 1900s.
It was a destination for wealthy and prominent Americans such as Grover Cleveland, Thomas Edison, John Jacob Astor and Winslow Homer.
General resorts, B & Bs and RV parks make Old Homosassa a fun and easy weekend getaway for NatureCoasters™.
Not only are the land and sea beautiful and bountiful, but the people are also friendly and accomodating. There is great food, from pressed Cubans to fresh locally caught seafood, all-you-can-eat crab and Cajun delights at reasonable prices.
Several talented artists reside here, creating and selling their wares in quaint “cracker” homes converted to gift shops, studios and resort lobbies.
Potters, glass artists, copper sculptors, painters, and carvers seem to be drawn to this natural area with its abundance of native flora and fauna.
From the last part of June to the last partof September each year, you can go “scalloping” with a charter and hunt for these tasty morsels with a snorkel mask and a bag for your bounty.
The healthy seagrass beds of this area provide a home to Bay Scallops, a simple, delectable, aquatic bivalve. (See our feature article on Scalloping here!)
Fishing is plentiful on the Homosassa River, as are manatee sightings, kayaks, pontoons, and airboat rides.
Several big fishing tournaments are held in Homosassa throughout the year!
There is often live music on the weekends at several Old Homsassa locations, including MacRae’s Shed, the Florida Cracker Monkey Bar, and Crump’s Landing.
Oh, and did I forget to mention the Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park?
For a small admission ($13) you will be treated to a boat ride down the river (canceled during COVID-19 precautions – check with the Park for current information), see manatees and a vortex of thousands of native Florida fish, bobcats, panthers, alligators, snakes, river otters and birds, birds, birds – including American Bald Eagles.
The whole community seems to volunteer at the Wildlfie Park, which adds to the warm feeling I get every time I visit. You will too.
Homosassa’s community is a joy to visit, so plan to take a little trip off the beaten path of US 19 and enjoy this thriving enclave today.