Sweetwater Cabin

National Forests in Florida

Built by the Civilian Conservation Corps, this classic example of 1930s CCC architecture is perched above a chalky blue spring - Sweetwater Spring - that creates a stream feeding Juniper Creek. It is one of the most popular and secretive getaways in the Ocala National Forest. 

This popular Sweetwater Spring Rental Cabin is a great way to escape from it all, and has its own spring, and canoes. Cell phone service is limited, but there is a landline phone available for local and emergency calls only. 

The cabin is located in the Juniper Prairie Wilderness Area of the Ocala National Forest in the Silver Springs area.  

For active leisure fun, two canoes with paddles and life vests are furnished for guests. Canoeists can negotiate the famous Juniper Canoe Run and egress at Juniper Wayside on SR 19. Or, if you are looking for a more passive activity, you can enjoy nature at it’s finest by sitting on the screened porch, the observation deck, or by taking a leisure walk in the surrounding woods. 

Due to high demand, Sweetwater Cabin rental reservations are awarded through an annual computerized lottery selection process. Reservations are week-long and run from Friday to Friday. Only one entry per household allowed, per year. 

Pets are not permitted on the property due to its sensitive historic and ecologic nature.

Permit & Season Information

This permit allows the permit holder access to the Sweetwater Cabin and Spring for a week-long reservation that runs from the starting date on a Friday at 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 a.m. the following Friday. Early check-ins and late check-outs cannot be accommodated. 

Need to Know

Permit applications are limited to one per HOUSEHOLD per year. Lottery fees are NON REFUNDABLE.

There is NO waitlist for Sweetwater Cabin's cancelations. Open weeks will become directly bookable when available.

Sweetwater Cabin is a historically significant building and site, and is under special protections for its preservation. Pets of any kind are not permitted. 

Several alligators have taken up residence in Sweetwater Spring and the surrounding run. Swimming is extremely dangerous and not suggested. 



Public Property


Vehicle Operation

Fish and wildlife.


 The following are prohibited to the extent Federal or State law is violated:

General Notice

All visitors and users of the National Forests are subject to Federal Regulations. The points of conduct listed here are included and enforceable through Federal Regulations. 

CFR Title 36, Part 261 – Prohibitions , are applicable to all National Forests. Copies of Title 36 are on file at all Forest Supervisor and District Ranger Offices.

Fee Policy

Lottery fees are non-refundable.   

Rental Rate: Payment in full of the following fees shall be due upon receiving a permit through the lottery:

Rental fee: $1,250

Deposit: $350

Taxes: $137.50 (7% FL Sales Tax, 4% FL Tourist Tax)

Total: $1,737.50 


The deposit is for security and shall be refunded within 60 days of the Check-out Date, provided the following has not occurred:

Cancellation Policy

Cancellation Policy

If Guest wishes to cancel the reservation, the payments will be refunded as follows:

100% if canceled 28 days prior to the Check-in Date

Less than 28 days prior to scheduled stay: Refund of payments will be contingent upon filling reservation with an alternative customer.

Contact Information

Mailing Address

26701 East Highway 40 Astor FL 26701

Phone Number

(352) 625-3147

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