Kayak & Canoe

Hontoon Island is an island in the St. Johns River.

Hontoon Island: Camping, cabins, great kayak trip in wild setting

Hontoon Island is a terrific refuge for camping or a stay in a rustic cabin and as a base for a kayaking or canoe trip. The paddle around the island is 10 miles filled with birds and wildlife, past ancient cypress and oak trees. This Central Florida state park is near several other great parks, too.

Turkey Creek in Palm Bay at Turkey Creek Sanctuary

Lovely Turkey Creek in Palm Bay combines kayaking & hiking

A scenic kayak outing on Turkey Creek takes you to Palm Bay’s Turkey Creek Sanctuary, where you can explore 3.5 miles of trails. Along the way, see dolphins, manatees and other wildlife.

Our picnic site amid cypress trees and knees on the Ocklawaha River.

Ocklawaha River: Kayak or canoe a river that was saved

Environmentalists have won a few battles in Florida and paddling the Ocklawaha is a good reminder. This is a wild, untouched river that was once destined to be lost forever. Today, it is a beautiful spot to explore.

Lazy Day on the beach at Panther Key

Beach camping in the wild Ten Thousand Islands

EVERGLADES CITY — One of my favorite Florida getaways is to boat out to the outer islands and camp for a weekend on a remote, pristine beach fronting the Gulf of Mexico.

Canoeing on the Tomoka River

Tomoka State Park: Gateway to the Ormond Scenic Loop

Hidden among tidal marshes, Tomoka River State Park offers a shady campground, miles of paddle trails, biking and hiking, productive fisheries, launch ramps and a well-stocked park concession with music on weekends.

Campsite at Kelly Park/Rock Springs.

Cool Camping Near Orlando: Kelly Park/Rock Spring

Kelly Park is best known for the hugely popular Rock Spring, but it also has one of the best campgrounds anywhere in the state. Summer visits require a bit of planning because of the crowds, especially on weekends.

Spruce Creek watercolor by Stewart Jones

Spruce Creek paddle: A diamond in the rough

Development is creeping up on Spruce Creek and Strickland Bay, but enough has been preserved — for now — to enjoy an awesome day of kayaking. (Watercolor by Stewart Jones)

Fort Jefferson and Bush Island (Photo by Ron Yeany)

Getting way away: Dry Tortugas National Park

This isolated cluster of islands 70 miles west of Key West is accessible only by boat or seaplane. But treasures await you, especially if you camp over for a few nights. Yes, you can camp here! Snorkeling and kayaking, too!