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If you enjoy water adventures, you’re in luck when visiting Florida. Whether you want to be on the water or in it, the Sunshine State packs a lot of diverse activities on its vast amount of pristine water spots. Check out some of the best places in Florida to enjoy some of your favorite water activities this summer.
Water Slides - Rapids Water Park, Riviera Beach
Located near West Palm Beach, Rapids Water Park is one of the best water parks in Florida. The park is stacked with a remarkable 35 slides and a 45-degree drop slide called “Big Thunder” that claims to give riders a feeling of weightlessness in complete darkness. Only the truly brave will try the “Brain Drain”, a heart-pounding 70-foot free-fall vertical plunge in an enclosed flume that launches riders up to 35 mph.
Tubing - Ichetucknee Springs State Park, Fort White
Ichetucknee Springs State Park in Fort White is one of the best tubing spots Florida has to offer. With 212 million gallons of crystal clear and refreshing 72-degree waters, it is the perfect spot to enjoy an afternoon of tubing in the summertime. Lasting up to three hours, you will float through six miles of wetlands and shaded lush hammocks through this National Natural Landmark.
Open Water & Cave Diving, Ginnie Springs
Known as one of the clearest springs in Florida, Ginnie Springs in High Springs is the ultimate playground for open water and cave divers. Due to its seven natural springs, you will find some of the most exciting underwater treasures that include massive grottos, diverse and colorful marine life, and 30,000 feet of complex passages sure to impress any underwater enthusiast.
Paddleboarding, Santa Rosa Beach
If you want to find one of the best spots for paddleboarding, head west of Panama City to Santa Rosa Beach. One of the best beach destinations in the Panhandle, you’ll discover a landscape of white sand beaches and emerald waters along its 26-mile shoreline. Its calm waters are perfect for paddlers of all ages. You can paddle through Hogtown Bayou or head towards Choctawhatchee Bay, where you can admire beautiful homes that line the waterways. The Santa Rosa Sound is another hotspot near Okaloosa Island, where unspoiled views of Florida’s natural beauty are best seen from the water.
Parasailing, Siesta Key
There is no better way to see some of Florida’s pristine coastline beaches than from high above. Siesta Key is a perfect spot to fly high in a parasailing adventure because you can’t beat soaking in the breathtaking scenery that includes white sandy beaches and shimmering waters of the Gulf. Parasail Siesta offers tours that last around two and a half hours and include a relaxing boat ride around the area.
Kayaking, Silver Springs
Silver Springs has been a treasured Florida gem since the 19th century and continues to be a local favorite for kayaking. Jump in a kayak and explore the beauty of Florida’s most pristine nature spots along the Fort King Waterway. In a kayak, you can spot diverse wildlife such as fish, turtles, eagles, rhesus monkeys, and alligators on the banks.
Snorkeling - Bahia Honda State Park, Big Pine Key
Consistently referred to as one of Florida’s most exciting snorkeling spots, Bahia Honda State Park is Big Pine Key is a slice of paradise. You will find a range of colorful and exotic corals, tropical fish, crustaceans, and living sponges among the shallow seas. Outdoor adventures are endless, as you can also hop in a kayak and paddle the waters or simply lounge on the soft sands. Water-loving travelers can also sign up for boat trips to the reef to get up close to the area’s most spectacular natural wonders.
If you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at wakeboarding or want to sharpen your skills, Orlando Watersports Complex (OWC) in Orlando is the place to be. OWC has two full-sized cable systems with a boating lake equipped for riders and you will regularly find some of Florida’s pros practicing their tricks. Whether you just starting out or want to go toe to toe with the experts, OWC is perfect for all ages and skill levels.
Scalloping, Homosassa Bay
People from all over the world flock to Homosassa Bay, located an hour away from Tampa, from July to September to search for the tiny sweet morsels of white meat found in bay scallops. Homosassa Bay is an ideal spot in Florida for scalloping due to its sea-grass beds, warm waters, and breathtaking scenery. A perfect activity for all ages, grab your snorkel gear and dive right in for a chance to catch a fresh and tasty dinner.
Canoeing, Alexander Springs
Located in the Ocala National Forest, Alexander Springs is the ideal place to go canoeing in Florida’s summer. What makes this spot special is its gorgeous 72-degree turquoise waters, clear sandy bottom floors, and subtropical surroundings. As you coast through this peaceful forested scenery, you can’t help but soak in and appreciate the nature and wildlife around you.
Banana Boat Rides, Destin
Mobile Sports Banana Boat Rides offers some of the most thrilling family fun activities you can have on the Emerald Coast. Located in Destin, you can enjoy the crystal blue waters of the Gulf as you and your family take a wild ride and make memories you won’t soon forget. Perfect for water lovers of all ages, both kids and those who feel like a kid at heart will have a blast.
Inflatable Water Park, St. Pete Beach
Enjoy one of the most exciting playgrounds Florida has to offer located at St. Pete Beach’s Tradewinds Resort. Available for a small fee if you’re not a guest, the kids will have a blast exploring this unique inflatable water park that includes massive slides and floating trampolines in a similar layout you’d see on Wipeout.
Speed Boating, Miami
If you’re going to get on a speedboat, the ideal spot is in Miami. With a backdrop like no other in Florida, you can feel like an extra in Miami Vice and hop on a 90-minute speed boat tour to get an informational look at Magic City from its stunning azure waters. Miami SpeedBoat Tours offers guests intimate excursions through the Atlantic as you coast by multi-million dollar mansions, yachts, and celebrity homes.