There are plenty of rivers and streams within the US state of Florida with various drainage basins. Most of these rivers drain into the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf Coast, while others drains into the Alachua Sink or Lake Okeechobee.
Longest Rivers in Florida
The Apalachicola River, known outside the state as the Chattahoochee River, has a length of about 430 miles and is the longest in Florida. The St. Johns River is the second longest, with a length of 310 miles, while the Suwannee River is the third longest with a length of 246 miles. The Ochlockonee River and Alapaha River rank as the fourth and fifth longest rivers in Florida, with lengths of 206 miles and 202 miles, respectively. The two shortest rivers in Florida are the Choctawhatchee River and the Withlacoochee River with approximate lengths of 141 miles each.
The Apalachicola River has a massive watershed called the ACF River Basin (Apalachicola River, Chattahoochee River, and Flint River), which drains an area of approximately 19,500 square miles. Eventually, all three rivers that make up the ACG River Basin drain into the Gulf of Mexico. The Apalachicola River begins at the convergence of the Chattahoochee and Flint Rivers, close to the town of Chattahoocheer. The river is only known as the Apalachicola River in Florida, and is called the Chattahoochee River outside of the state. The river links the Gulf Coast and the coastal plains to the Appalachian Mountains. In addition, until it reaches the Jackson River, it serves as the division line between Florida’s Eastern and Central time zones.
St. Johns River
The St. Johns River is the longest among all rivers in Florida that begin and end within the state. The river is also the most important within Florida in terms of recreational and commercial purposes. The river originates from the St. Johns Marsh in Indian River County, and eventually drains into the Atlantic Ocean in Duval County.
Along with the Choctawhatchee River, the Withlacoochee River, also known as the Crooked River, is one of the two shortest rivers on this list, with a length of about 141 miles each. Both rivers are at least three times shorter than the Appalachicola River. Since there is little industrial activity along the Choctawhatchee River, its water is cleaner than most other rivers. Despite its clean water, the river is prone to occasional flooding, including the devastating 1990 floods which caused damages totalling $88 million.