• The Florida panther's steely gaze - NPS/RALPH ARWOOD

    Big Cypress

    National Preserve Florida

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  • Annual 60-Day ORV Closure for Wheeled Vehicles

    Beginning at 12:01 am Monday, June 2, the annual 60-day recreational ORV closure for all units of the Preserve that allow for wheeled ORV access will begin. The closure will be lifted on Friday, August 1. More »

  • Secondary Trail Closure

    Effective 8/1/2014, following the 60-day recreational ORV closure, only the designated primary trails in the backcountry will be open to recreational ORV use and access. All secondary trails will remain closed on an interim basis for an additional 60-days More »

  • Campground Closure

    All campgrounds but Midway and the loop in the Bear Island Campground are closed through August 29. More »

  • Interstate 75 Mile Marker 63 Closure

    Beginning summer of 2013, the rest area and backcountry access at Mile Marker 63 will be closed due to construction. More »

Filming & Photography Permits

Filming/Photography Permits are issued for photography, filming, and associated sound recording to ensure protection of resources, to prevent significant disruption of normal visitor uses. Permits are required for access to areas normally closed to the visiting public.


Generally, permits are not required for:

  1. Visitors using cameras and/or recording devices for their own personal use.
  2. Still photography when it doesn't involve props, models, professional crews or set dressings.
  3. Sound technicians, and film or video news crews at breaking news events. In these cases, the superintendent will still be required to protect national preserve resources and the rights and safety of visitors. News media wishing access for entertainment or scheduled purposes may require a permit.
  4. National Park Service filming or photography, Department of the Interior Audiovisual Center filming or filming/photography done pursuant to a cooperative agreement or contract.

A request for a filming or photography permit may be denied if:

  1. the proposed filming or photography would conflict with the visitors' normal use of the Preserve.
  2. the permittee fails to obtain insurance/bonding, or does not agree to pay assessed cost recovery.
  3. in the opinion of the superintendent, or designee, the filming activity requested represents a potential for harm or impact on the Preserve's natural, cultural, or recreational resources, may create health or safety risks, or disrupt visitor use and enjoyment.
  4. it is determined that supervisory requirements for the proposed project will place unreasonable burdens on Preserve staff, regardless of the applicant's willingness to pay supervisory costs.
  5. the request includes entry into areas closed to the general visiting public, or which would allow activities not permitted to the average visitor.

Filming Permit Application
To apply for a filming permit, download an application, fill it out, and send it to:

Big Cypress National Preserve
33100 Tamiami Trail East
Ochopee, FL 34141
Attn: Film/Photography Permit Coordinator

Special instructions are listed on the filming permit information sheet; please read carefully. A completed application must be accompanied by a non-refundable application fee of $100 in the form of a cashier's check or money order made payable to National Park Service.


All costs of evaluating the request will be billed to the applicant, whether a permit is issued or not. In compliance with the requirements of the Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996, the applicant must submit their social security number or Federal tax ID number when filling out the application for permit. Applications will not be processed if submitted incomplete or are received without payment.

Did You Know?

Hunters entering the Preserve on a swamp buggy. Photo courtesy of Jack Moller.

Big Cypress National Preserve was one of the first national preserves within the National Park System. As a preserve, Big Cypress manages for a broader range of recreational activities, including hunting and off-road vehicle access.