12 Dog-Friendly Activities in Haines City, Florida

Posted: April 28, 2023 | Categories: Communities | Communities>Gracelyn Grove | Pet Friendly Homes & Communities
By Sunny

White Highland Terrier on a Table

Woof, woof! Sunny here, the official Highland Homes pet mascot. I’m here to share some paw-some dog-friendly activities, as well as a bit about new homes in Haines City, FL at Gracelyn Grove, the best place for pets and their humans searching for a new home!

If there’s one thing we furry friends love most is an ample green space to roll around in while enjoying the beautiful Florida sunshine! Haines City is a community rich with dog-friendly activities close to home, for you to explore with your best pal.

1. Poinciana Community Park

Dog Park at Poinciana Community Park in Poinciana, FL
Courtesy of BringFido.com


First up, the Dog Park at Poinciana Community Park is one of my fave spots for off-leash playtime with separate areas for large and small dogs, water fountains, agility equipment, and shaded benches for pet parents to sit and watch their furry friends play. When you're done at the dog park, Poinciana Community Park itself welcomes leashed dogs throughout most of the park and has trails. sports fields, picnic areas, a playground, and more.

2. Allen David Broussard Catfish Creek Preserve State Park

The Allen David Broussard Catfish Creek Preserve State Park is a go-to spot for my owner and me! We love exploring the 5.5 miles of hiking trails along Lake Wales Ridge, offering the perfect vantage point to see wildlife, rare plants, and unique habitats. Remember to bring lots of water and snacks; the trails are sandy and can be tough in areas, and you'll work up an appetite. There is also fishing, horseback trails, and a small picnic area.

And, the Catfish Creek Preserve is directly adjacent to my next favorite spot...

3. Lake Kissimmee State Park

Lake Kissimmee State Park in Lake Wales, FL
Courtesy of FloridaStateParks.org


Lake Kissimmee State Park, just outside of Haines City in adjacent Lake Wales, is an even larger park with over 13 miles of hiking trails where you can spot natural wonders including sandhill cranes, bald eagles, deer, turkeys, and more! You can also enjoy fishing, kayaking, canoeing, and boating on Lake Kissimmee, horseback riding, mountain biking, picnics, camping, and even stargazing thanks to the dark skies in this location.

With both of these state parks, don’t forget to keep your furry friend on a leash to ensure everyone has a paw-sitively safe time. 

4. Posner Park

This one is a different kind of park - it's an outdoor shopping "park!" Posner Park Shopping Mall features several shops in its directory, from Ashley Furniture to Bath and Body Works, Target, Books-a-Million, Marshalls, and more. PetSmart and Banfield Pet Hospital are open to furry friends, and I love joining my human for a scrumptious bite to eat at one of several dog-friendly restaurants.

5. Auburndale TECO Trail

Lake Myrtle Dog Park

The Auburndale TECO Trail in nearby Auburndale offers an excellent spot for biking, walking, and jogging with your dog. The 6.6-mile trail features asphalt and concrete paths and connects to the General James A. Van Fleet Trail. It also passes by the Auburndale Dog Park, a great spot to stop and play.

6. Northeast Regional Park

Dog Park at Northeast Regional Park in Davenport, FL
Courtesy of BringFido.com


Located in nearby Davenport, the Northeast Regional Park is yet another pet-friendly park we love to stop by. Leashes are required in the main park, but the Dog Park at Northeast Regional Park offers off-leash space to run and play with fenced-in areas for small and large dogs, a shaded picnic area, and water installations to keep cool and hydrated.

7. Krush Brau Park

OK I'm really excited to share this one. Do you like German food? Biergartens? Lederhosen? Hanging out and enjoying all of these things with your best friend?! Krush Brau Park in Kissimmee is a nine-acre German-inspired amusement park and cultural destination that is pet-friendly in outdoor areas! Eat, drink, play games, and they even have dog beer - yes, dog beer - a non-alcoholic treat we can enjoy together.

8. Old Town Kissimmee

Old Town Kissimmee
 Courtesy of Visit Orlando


Old Town Kissimmee is a local-favorite amusement park and entertainment district known for its unique lineup of shops, restaurants, rides, and events, including weekly car shows and a Saturday classic car cruise. Events here are free, and it's a regular spot for my human and me to hang out, watch people enjoy the carnival-style rides and games, drool over cars in the cruise and car shows, enjoy live concerts, and more!

9. Bok Tower Gardens

Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales, FL


A 250-acre contemplative garden and bird sanctuary, Bok Tower Gardens is another Central Florida attraction that's pet-friendly (in outdoor areas) and Sunny-approved! This national historical landmark and its beautiful gardens are an awe-worthy place to stroll, and the 60-bell, 205-foot-tall Singing Tower Carillon plays daily concerts. If you haven't been there, this one is a must-visit, and if you love it as much as I do, consider a membership so you can come back time and again.

10. Lake Eola Park

Lake Eola Park in downtown Orlando is a great place to be for those of us with wagging tails and loved by both locals and tourists thanks to a packed lineup of restaurants, blooming greenery, a strolling sidewalk circling the lake, and many events – all with a stunning view of the Orlando skyline!

Paws in the Park at Lake Eola Park
Paws in the Park Festival at Lake Eola Park


My fave event is the Paws in the Park Festival, which is full of amusement for humans and pets alike, from live music and a beer garden to a doggie fun zone, dog diving, lure courses, and even a pet costume contest! This annual festival benefits the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando, one of the state's largest animal welfare organizations, and raised over $150,000 to help homeless pets in 2023.

11. Paw-Sitively Delicious Haines City Dining

After all that activity, you and your furry friend will surely be hungry! Luckily, there are several pet-friendly restaurants in the Haines City area where you can grab a bite.

  • The Food Truck Marketplace, a unique food truck paradise showcasing a variety of food options and outdoor seating for you and your furry friend in the Haines City Art Alley. 
  • Tortilleria La Mexicana #5, a Mexican restaurant serving the Haines City community for 20 years and counting welcomes dogs at its outdoor seating area. The trusted menu features mouth-watering staples such as asada, al pastor, barbacoa de res, chorizo, Mexican street corn, and much more!
  • Beef O’Brady’s, a casual dining sports bar with dog-friendly outdoor seating and a menu jam-packed with delicious American cuisine classics. 
  • Ovation Bistro & Bar, the best smokehouse in Central Florida enjoys a location in nearby Davenport and is another excellent option for those looking for a pet-friendly dining experience topped with exceptional dishes and drinks. 
  • Rock & Brews, a rock n’ roll-themed restaurant in nearby Kissimmee featuring plenty of outdoor seating for you and your furry friend and a dynamite menu for humans as well as a dog menu; I love the Bow-Wow Burger!

12. Gracelyn Grove Dog Park

Gracelyn Grove community dog park

This private dog park in Haines City’s Gracelyn Grove neighborhood provides a fun spot for your furry friend to run, play, and socialize with other dogs. Homeowners at Gracelyn Grove enjoy separate areas for large and small dogs, fountains to keep your furry friend cool, and plenty of benches for pet parents to relax and watch their dogs play.

Just how do you get access to this private dog park, you ask?

Become a Homeowner at Gracelyn Grove

Let me tell you a Sunny-certified secret! For those of you in the market for a new home in Haines City, FL, Gracelyn Grove is a fantastic option for humans and pooches alike. In addition to the dog park, Gracelyn Grove also has meandering sidewalks and common areas where I love to strut on a leash, then maybe sit on a shady bench in a gazebo while my paw-ents chat with their friends in the neighborhood. There’s even a park for kids with shaded play equipment.

Gracelyn Grove Amenities Center

And the location! Not only is Gracelyn Grove convenient to all my fave activities in the Haines City area, but it’s also just 20 miles from the Walt Disney World Resort and less than 40 from downtown Orlando making this community perfect for pet parents who want to live in laid-back surroundings while still having access to attractions and all the perks of living in the Orlando area.

Walt Disney World in Orland Florida
Walt Disney World Resort


Another benefit of living in Haines City? It’s affordable! Single-family homes at Gracelyn Grove are priced from $290,000s and feature 1,301 to 3,162 square feet of living space with three to six bedrooms, pet-friendly features, and my favorite – a backyard! Homes also wow with open-concept living space, flexible-use rooms, and a breathtaking private owner’s suite. Most homes include a covered lanai providing outdoor living space (pet owners love the optional lanai screening, for secure, enclosed outdoor living) and select homes are adjacent to open space, providing exclusive backyard privacy.

With options for both a quick move-in or to build your personalized home from the ground up, you’re sure to find the home you’ve been looking for at Gracelyn Grove! To learn more about starting a Sunny-approved life in Haines City, browse available homes online then call or email us to connect with a Haines City New Home Specialist today!

Parker Model Home at Gracelyn Grove

Tags: Pets Dog Park Walking Trails Haines City Relocating to Florida Central Florida Greater Orlando Gracelyn Grove State Parks Auburndale TECO Trail Posner Park Old Town Kissimmee Bok Tower Gardens Lake Eola Park