Ever gone kayaking? It is a fascinating adventure that connects travelers to some of the best waterways and a natural environment. Florida is one of the best Kayaking destinations and has a lot in store for travelers. From beautiful waterways to crystal blue waters, and huge swamplands to make a vacation memorable. Visitors have a wide range of kayaking forms to choose from, and every need and interest can be fulfilled in this paddlers' paradise. Florida has diverse ecosystems, and one can be lucky to spot the incredible wildlife in the flourishing landscapes as they kayak in Florida's most spectacular places. Here are the 8 best spots to explore Florida’s waterways, while kayaking.
8 Winter Park Chain Of Lakes
Florida's Winter Park is a perfect spot for kayaking – thanks to the magnificent man-made canals winding throughout the historic city while giving travelers a glimpse of the State's incredible natural wildlife. Along the banks of the canals, there are plenty of plants thriving. The shoreline trees are home to beautiful wading birds. These canals link six large freshwater lakes with different fish species and turtles thriving within them. Visitors exploring this region can enjoy the sightings of nature at its best while kayaking. The shade from these canals offers the most splendid and relaxing cruise and relieves kayakers from the sun and wind.
7 Blackwater River
Blackwater River is located on the Northwest side of Florida and is a perfect spot for travelers looking to kayak on a swifter waterway. The dark tan color of its waters and the white-sandy beaches along its river banks are not just suitable for kayaking but an incredible feast for the eye! Extending 56 miles long, 31 miles are sheltered specifically designated for paddling. The designated paling trail starts from Okaloosa County and ends in the Blackwater River State Forest. Visitors can always rent equipment and have the best experience at this point.
6 Shell Key Preserve
Covering an area of 1828 acres, Shell Key Preserve is a preserve with a barrier island measuring 195 acres and is situated in the Tampa Bay area. The marine environment is mind-blowing, and tourists get incredible chances of spotting dolphins and manatees as they kayak through the stunning mangrove forests. The beaches surrounding this area are spectacular and feature white sand. Being inaccessible to the public except through the water, kayaking is the only option to experience the pristine white beaches. Kayaking in this region also allows travelers to discover fish, crustaceans, starfish, and a bunch of other beautiful sea creatures.
5 Tarpon Springs
Located in Tampa Bay, Tarpon Springs is a perfect place of see some of the manatees, dolphins, stingrays, and tarpon. If one is lucky to travel and explore this rea during the manatee season, seasonal trips are offered, allowing visitors to view these giant creatures up close. Apart from experiencing these waterways, one can also explore the historical sites located here – including the Victorian-styled homes dating back to the 1900s.
4 Myakka River
Located along Florida's popular Coast of the Gulf, and a portion of the Myakka River State Park, Myakka River offers the best kayaking experience. The river's shores are lined with big oaks, and travelers can also view the lush marshes in the area. Combining camping and kayaking in the park with paddling on one of the region's adjoining lakes offers an experience of a lifetime. With 80 camping sites, hiking trails covering 39 miles, and biking trails well paved, there is more than enough to enhance one's kayaking tour in the Myakka River.
3 Suwannee River
Located in North Florida, the Suwannee River is one of the most popular and loved waterways in the state. A portion of the Suwannee River Wilderness Trail, covering 171 miles, Suwannee River is a scenic water trail, offering one of Florida’s most magnificent kayaking experiences. Starting from the White Springs in Jacksonville's west part, at the Big Shoals State Park, the waterway offers a fascinating ride, and kayakers will encounter the largest whitewater rapids in the state. Ending at Mexico's Gulf, kayaking on this water trail can be easy, moderate, and difficult – and visitors must ensure they go for the route they can afford to ride on and check the conditions of the river.
2 Hillsborough River
With over 27,000 years of history, Hillsborough River tops the list of adventure destinations for nature lovers. A bunch of outdoor activities have been developed throughout the long history of this river, and it is considered a haven for outdoor adventure. Covering 60 miles long, this river is easily accessible and be found only a short distance from Tampa. It starts from Polk County, and its downstream reaches Hillsborough Bay – and guarantees an incredible Kayaking experience in Florida. One can go kayak camping and enjoy other recreational opportunities this area has to offer.
1 Crystal River
With incredible turquoise waters, Crystal River is one of Florida's prettiest waterways for kayaking. The place is open for kayaking only from 1st April to 14th November. Kayakers cannot ride on the waters during the rest of the year the manatees' flock to the river and can cause harm to visitors. The river flows into the Hunter Springs, Jurassic Springs, and the Three Sisters Springs and features natural warm waters – the reason why the endangered manatees make this place their winter home.