Great sporting events require great venues. Only Ocala/Marion County, Florida offers award-winning facilities for golf tournaments and other team sports in the international epicenter of equestrian competition. We’ve hosted a variety of prestigious competitions from the National Golf Association’s Professional Tour and NCAA events to the Fishers of Men National Tournament Trail and Hero Rush. When the games are done, the fun has just begun and you can enjoy hiking, biking, kayaking, swimming, zip-lining and more.
Florida Horse Park
The 500-acre facility is a celebrated venue for equestrian events, including international-level equine competitions as well as adventure racing. It hosts competitions in virtually every equine discipline, from dressage to polo to versatility challenges, and is an official training site for the U.S. Olympic equestrian team.
Ocala Equestrian Complex
This premier complex features include three outdoor arenas, a 250’ x 140’ covered main arena, 225’ x 90’ covered warm-up arena, electronic scoreboard and 400 stalls for short- or long-term stabling.
Ocala Rotary Sportplex
The 80-acre facility includes 11 lit baseball fields, two lit and three unlit soccer fields, one multi-use field and 13 batting cages. In 2010 and 2013 it hosted the 10 & Under Cal Ripkin World Series and each year hosts district, state and regional baseball and soccer tournaments.
The 72-acre facility is well equipped for events, and includes two lit softball fields, three lit baseball fields and one soccer field.
Ocala National Golf Club
This Rees Jones-designed course, with a route that bends through century-old oak trees, has hosted the US Women’s Mid- Amateur Championship, National Golf Association Professional Tour, American Junior Golf Association, Florida State Golf Association and Florida High School Athletic Association State Finals.
This venue boasts an Olympic-size pool hosts year-round outdoor swimming events.
Big Sun Youth Soccer Complex
The complex features all grass fields including two full-size championship fields, five youth pitches, and two small fields and two mini fields for pee-wee or warm-ups.
Belleview Sports Complex
The 87-acre complex includes seven baseball fields/ softball fields, three soccer fields and two football fields.
Ft. King Tennis Center
Perfect for year-round outdoor tennis, there are eight lighted clay courts and four lighted hard courts. A ball machine is available for rent.
Pine Oaks of Ocala Golf Course
The 27-hole, tournament-friendly course, for nine-hole and 18-hole competition, has a full driving range and four-acre short game practice area.
Central Florida Community College
Facilities include indoor basketball and volleyball courts, a college-sized baseball field and softball field, and six hard-court tennis courts.
Attractions & Accommodations
Kayakers and canoeists enjoy paddling on hundreds of fresh-water springs, lakes and the Silver, Rainbow, Ocklawaha and Withlacoochee Rivers. Hiking trails abound in Ocala National Forest and the area’s many parks. Driving through Ocala’s horse country is another popular pastime, and tours of working Thoroughbred farms are available. For high-flying fun, The Canyons Zip Line and Canopy Tours takes guests through an old growth of oaks and pines. Silver Springs, considered Florida’s original tourist attraction, draws guests from near and far with its iconic glass-bottom boats that provide views of fish, turtles and alligators as they glide over springs that are 99.8 percent pure and up to 80 feet deep. Fans of motorsports will enjoy exploring Don Garlits Museum of Drag Racing and the competition at Bubba Raceway Park, which claims one of the largest clay tracks in America. Only an hour or so away are Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando, SeaWorld Orlando and other themed attractions. Beaches on Florida’s west and east coasts are just an hour away from Marion County.
Getting Here and Around
Ocala/Marion County, located in Central Florida north of Orlando, is an easy reach from anywhere along I-75. Driving times: Orlando and Tampa, 1½ hours; Jacksonville, two hours; Tallahassee, three hours; Miami, five hours; Mobile and Atlanta, six hours.
The Ocala-Marion Visitors and Convention Bureau works with right holders from the beginning of the process to the end, whether it’s securing referees, tents and porta-potties to helping with advertising or budgeting. The staff can assist in designing banners, e-blasts and other materials. The weather also cooperates—the county’s inland location shields it from bad weather coming off the Atlantic and Gulf coasts, and the area gets more sunny days during the year than many of the Sunshine State’s coastal resorts. Sports events held in Marion County have included the 23rd Annual U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Golf Championship, Florida High School Athletic Association District Bowling, Florida State Golf Association, Crappie USA Fishing, AAU Golf, as well as various regional soccer, baseball, softball, golf and other events. Plus, the county has received international acclaim as a preeminent location for equestrian events.