Remote, rural and picturesque, northwest Florida rewards your long drive with sparkling springs, the beautiful Suwanee River and scenic rural roads. Two state parks with cabins and campgrounds make great bases to explore the region.
Kayak & Canoe
On dark summer nights in the Mosquito Lagoon near Titusville, the water glows from bioluminescent plankton. Kayak tours help visitors see the spectacular light show.
A fascinating kayak destination: Mound Key Archaeological State Park, an uninhabited island accessible only by boat near Fort Myers Beach. The ceremonial center of the Calusa people, Mound Key is one of a kind and is surrounding by waters full of wildlife.
The popular Lower Keys park is perfect for kayak outings. You can kayak around the island or head out to tiny picturesque Little Bahia Honda Island.
The new Silver Springs State Park near Ocala gives kayakers their first chance to launch at the famous springhead and paddle an exquisite waterway that has never been open to kayakers before.
Paddle Florida is a non-profit that organizes a few paddling trips each year on Florida’s greatest waterways. Limited in size and carefully researched, these trips are great for solo paddlers or folks who appreciate a little support in undertaking a several day paddling and camping trip.
The St. Lucie River is not a well-known kayaking destination — and it should be. It’s wild and gorgeous — a jungly forest of old live oaks thick with airplants and Spanish moss. After paddling about two hours, you reach a remote area where you can picnic and take a hike.
This cypress-lined Alafia river has an unusual feature for Florida: Rocky shoals that create fun rapids to kayak. It’s near hiking trails, springs and a very nice paddling trail at Little Manatee River State Park.