Fort Gates Ferry
ECO TOURS / EXCURSIONS
The Fort Gates Ferry is an auto ferry that crosses the St. Johns River downstream of Lake George and just upstream of Little Lake George, at Fruitland Cove. The oldest operating ferry in Florida.
The historic Fort Gates Ferry carries cars, pickup trucks, motorcycles, bikes and their passengers across the St Johns River.
Fort Gates, on the eastern edge of the Ocala National Forest near Salt Springs, was an army stockade during the Second Seminole war (1835-1842).
The ferry's eastern terminus is Gateway Fish Camp near Fruitland Cove, and its western landing is in the Ocala National Forest at the end of FR-29 (Forest Service Road) probably near where the old Seminole War stockade was located.
The ferry route is part of the ''Florida Black Bear Scenic Highway'', a national scenic byway that meanders over this part of Florida.
This ferry saves some motorists who live near either side of the ferry route almost 50 miles of driving if they want to go from one side to the other. Without the ferry they would go north to Palatka and across the Memorial Bridge there, or down to Astor and cross that bridge