Last updated on June 22nd, 2020 at 05:19 pm
Night-time can be a peaceful or romantic time to kayak . Many parks and outfitters offer full-moon kayaking and canoe trips. Some encourage participants to bring a bottle of wine; others end the night with a campfire and s’mores.
A twist on full-moon kayaking is bioluminescent kayaking, where you paddle on the darkest nights (when there isn’t a full-moon) in order to see creatures that are like underwater lightning bugs. Here’s a Florida Rambler story on bioluminescent kayaking.
Full-moon kayaking in South Florida
Oleta River State Park, North Miami, every month. Visiting this park, in the middle of the bustle of Miami, is like a mini-vacation.
Paddle with the gators at the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge in Boynton Beach. For $10 per person, you can join a group paddle from 7:30 to 9 p.m. though the sawgrass marsh. Reserve in advance; bring a flashlight and bug spray. There’s a $5 per car admission in the refuge. Loxahatchee Canoeing organizes full moon trips. To reserve, call 561-733-0192. Here’s the outfitters’ Facebook page.
Convenient to folks in Palm Beach and Broward counties, the outfitter at Snook Island Natural Area in Lake Worth now offers “Full Moon on the Lagoon” kayak outings.
In Southwest Florida, Kayak Marco Island offers moonlight kayak trips, including a full-moon party that ends at a local restaurant. In the Naples areas, there are full-moon tours from Adventures in Florida and in Fort Myers, from Gaea Guides.
Full-moon kayaking in Central Florida
On the Indian River Lagoon, an outfitter offers moonlight kayak tours regularly. In the summer, if you paddle on a truly dark night, you can experience bioluminescence — when creatures in the water glow like underwater lightning bugs. Here’s more about night-time paddling A Day Away Kayak Tours in Titusville.
Adventure Kayak of Cocoa Beach offers full-moon paddles on Merritt Island and Cocoa Beach.
Twenty minutes east of Orlando in Oviedo, you can do a moonlight paddle on the Little Big Econ with A Day Away Kayak Tours.
Bring wine and explore Winter Park Chain of Lakes. The outfitter Adventures in Florida runs a full-moon paddle trip every month, starting in Maitland. Participants are asked to bring a plastic wine glass — and a bottle to share, if you’d like — plus headlamp/flashlight and two glow sticks or L.E.D strobes. The fee, which includes equipment, is $40. Here are details and how to register.
Near Tampa, Canoe Outpost Little Manatee River, offers full moon paddles, including shuttle service for those who bring their own kayaks or canoes. (The Little Manatee is a beautiful and wild paddle.)
Full-moon kayaking in North Florida
In Northwest Florida near Chiefland, an outfitter runs full-moon trips out of Manatee Springs State Park, including pontoon boat rides.
Near Tallahassee, long-time outfitters T-N-T Hide-A-Way offers full-moon tours on the gorgeous Wakullah. It’s a leisurely one-way downstream paddle with a shuttle.
Note: Many other kayak and canoe outfitters all over the state offer full-moon kayaking, so check with your local outfitter or park. Most, but not all, require you to rent canoes or kayaks from them for the trips. Each outfitter is different, so call ahead. Most require advance registration and these trips do fill up during winter
Most full-moon kayaking activities take place on weekends closest to the full moons. Be sure to call ahead to make reservations.
And let us know about full-moon kayaking events that aren’t listed here so we can update our listings and share them with others.
More Florida kayaking resources: