This is your first step in planning adventures for the coming cooler weather. We’ve paddled dozens of Florida waterways and here’s our pick for the best places to kayak by region plus a few “unsung” favorites we recommend you discover.
Kayak & Canoe
With more than 1,700 islands, it is not surprising that the Florida Keys have ample abandoned history to explore. Humans may have called them home since at least the height of Greek civilization, some 3,600 years ago.
Telegraph Creek, a tributary of the Caloosahatchee River near Fort Myers, is all the things I love about kayaking destinations – out-of-the-way, uncrowded, scenic, full of wildlife. It’s located within a half hour of Fort Myers and is ideal for a shaded two- or three-hour kayak outing.
We’ve spent several great days kayaking the waterways along the St. Lucie River in the Treasure Coast. Here are three kayak trails we like: St. Lucie south branch , St. Lucie Inlet Preserve and Ten Mile Creek.
Once the site of a luxury resort for the rich and famous, Long Key State Park is a terrific place to spend a few hours hiking, beachcombing, swimming, snorkeling and kayaking in the Florida Keys. While most of its highly prized beachfront campsites are closed, a few tent sites are open.
The Lido Key Mangrove Trail is a well-known scenic kayak trail in Sarasota. Guest contributors Ed and Deb Higgins love paddling with friendly cormorants and weaving in and out of mangrove tunnels.
Just 45 minute from Tampa/St. Pete, the beautiful river, state park and region is a natural haven that can keep you busy exploring for days. There’s an outfitter to make trip-planning easy, plus it offers cabins and camping.
You’ll discover a natural world without traffic and crowds when you’re kayaking Deer Prairie Creek in North Port. This tributary of the Myakka River is quiet, off-the-beaten track and not widely known outside its neighboring area.