Grand Haven is a premier gated community in Palm Coast. Bounded on one side by the Matanzas River and by a 4,000-acre nature preserve on the other, it makes the perfect location for those who prefer a quieter community with a buffer between their homes and the rest of the world. This is yet another Palm Coast community built around a golf course. This one, in particular, is a Jack Nicklaus Signature golf course rated as one of the top 100 in North America.
Homes here are moderate in size and within driving distance of several restaurants, dog-friendly parks, pet supply stores, and vets. With winter lows in the mid-40s and summers in the 90s, you can walk most days of the year. However, the area does get approximately 52 inches of rain each year. The good news is that you can always plan your walks around the rain showers as they never last for very long.
While most golf communities have sidewalks running through the housing areas, Grand Haven and the Golf Club have gone one step beyond this. There is a hiking trail that runs through the entire golf course that you can walk along. The path offers some slight ups and downs to add a little variety to your walks. Beyond this, the community as a whole is pretty much flat and, while not the most interesting of walks, does at least give you and your pup a safe place to walk.
Keep in mind that at 80°F ambient temperatures, the sidewalks, streets, and dry sand can easily be in the 135 to 145°F range which can severely burn and injure the pads of your pup's paws. During the hottest months of the year, you might want to think about going for your walks in the early morning after the pavement has had time to cool down and your pup's paws are safe.
If you happen to be looking for a more challenging hike with your pooch, you should try some of the trails through the Graham Swamp Conservation Area. Several trails are running through this 4,000-acre space filled with exposed roots, dips, and uneven pathways that are more for the experienced hiker. This doesn't mean that the less experienced shouldn't hike on them, it simply means that if you and your dog are not experienced hikers, you need to take extra precautions as you stroll along.
On the eastern side of the community is Herschel King Park which covers 20 acres. This is a pet-friendly park with a boat launch, grills, and a fishing dock for you to enjoy. The waterfront park in the northern section of the community offers access to the Matanzas River trails for you and your pup and has a water fountain with a 'doggie bowl' for your four-legged hiking companion.