Kayaking Blue Springs State Park in the winter is a great chance to get up close to the amazing Florida manatees. while enjoying a beautiful kayaking tour in this little wildlife paradise. Our Blue Springs manatee tours allow you to sit back and relax as we slowly kayak up beautiful Snake Creek where Alligators, turkeys, deer, bald eagles, owls and a vast array of marsh birds call this manatee winter sanctuary their home.
The peak migration for the manatees is usually Nov 15 through March 1 or when the water temperature in the river drops below 68 degrees. Manatees are wild, and unless the air and water temperature are low, there is no guarantee to see them. The manatees require the warmth of the 72 degree year round water temperature in the spring to survive the cold weather. The record count in the spring is over 550. Even in the off season, it is very possible to see some local resident manatees, as well as epic water birds, alligators, turtles. otters and other and amazing Florida wildlife. The crystal clear spring is open during the spring, fall, and summer months, which is beautiful to explore in a kayak or paddle board.
We offer tandem and solo kayaks for this tour. This is a family friendly kayak tour. Kids 6-15 years old must ride with a tandem kayak with a parent. Sorry, because of the distance and safety…no kids under 6 on our public tours. Kids under six are allowed on our private tours.
Your professional and knowledgeable guide will also take pictures of your adventure for you to keep and cherish forever!
So what are you waiting for? Step out into the Wild Florida, with an informative and just plain fun, kayaking manatee tour in Blue Springs State Park today!
We are COVID compliant. Our staff and guides wear face covering while on land and social distance while on land and water. No mandate for customers
Book your Kayaking Tour Online! It’s Easy and fast.
Call or Text 904 – 315 – 8442
Public Group Blue Springs Kayaking Tours
Public Kayak Tour Price: $75.00 for solo/single kayaks & $120.00 for tandem/2 person kayaks. This is a slow paced, beginner friendly tour.
This is a public tour and we require a minimum of 6 people total to go out. If you have less than five in your group, you may still reserve. In the rare event the minimum number of reservations is not met, you will be notified 24 hours prior to your tour time, at which time you have the option to reschedule or a full refund.
Our guides are great, please don’t forget them! Gratuity is not included in the price. Just let us know at the end of the tour if you would like to add a tip to your credit card.
Tour Time: 9:30 a.m. We begin this tour early because the park and river get very crowded with people and boats during the manatee season and it’s just not the same experience. The mornings are much quieter and we see more wildlife.
Tour Distance: About 1.5 – 2 miles
Tour Duration: 3 hours No hurries..No worries! Slow paced.
Tour Location : Blue Springs State Park 2100 W French Ave. Orange City FL. 32763
What to Bring: Wet shoes or shoes that can get wet, (flip flops are fine) hat, sunblock, lunch/snacks, change of clothes (in case your butt gets wet) camera, water, tip for our wonderful guides and most of all smiles!
Lunch: Bring a lunch and explore the beautiful Blue Springs state park after your tour. There is a long boardwalk that runs along the springs so you can view the manatees. Bring your camera.
Tour Includes: short paddle instruction clinic, kayak, PFD, paddle, dry bag, and a friendly, local Florida native and UF master naturalist guide equipped with a camera to capture lasting memories for you to keep and cherish. We offer tandem or solo kayaks for this adventure. Kids 15 -6 yrs old, must ride in a tandem kayak with an adult. We suggest you bring drinking water in non disposable bottle.
Private Blue Springs Kayaking Tours
Private Kayak Tour Price: $85.00 per person. Five people minimum charge. Kids under six are allowed on our private tours.
Tour Location : Blue Springs State Park 2100 W French Ave. Orange City FL. 32763
Reservations for this tour must be made and prepaid 24 hours in advance online or by phone – 904-315-8442. Credit card is required. Must be 18 yrs old or accompanied by an adult. Kids under 16, must ride in a tandem kayak with an adult.
Please let us know. We require a 24 hour cancellation notice for any and all refunds Any and all cancellations by Kayak St Augustine due to weather or for any reason, the customer will receive a full refund of all charges. You will be notified by phone of weather updates and in the event of a cancellation of this tour.
About Blue Springs
Blue springs State Park is an amazing area for kayak tours with crystal clear water, rich in old Florida steamboat history, and abundant wildlife. The head spring is capable of pumping up to 102 millions of gallons of water a day, qualifying it to be a first magnitude spring. A first magnitude spring is a qualification of springs that pump a minimum of 100 cubic feet per second, however that flow is compromised by all the development in the area which causes a decrease in flow.
During the summer, blue springs is a great place to cool off and take a swim. You may even have resident manatees swim by, however swimming with…. or chasing manatees is not permitted. The temperature of Blue Springs stays 72 degrees year round. Swimming is not allowed during manatee season.
History of Blue Springs
Louis Thursby was a New Yorker turned gold prospector. Thursby purchased blue springs in 1856, and built a large plantation style home on a Indian midden, which still stands in Blue Springs today. He became a citrus grower and grew orange groves and shipped them by steam boat to Jacksonville. Before the railroad rolled through in the 1880s, steamboats ran up down the St Johns river, and Thursby’s Blue Springs Landing was a hot spot for steamboat activity, shipping tourists and goods to Jacksonville and beyond.
A hard freeze occurred in the 1890’s wiping out the areas citrus groves, and causing the industry south. Being the entrepreneur he was, Thursby switched to the tourism trade, taking advantage of Blue Springs Beauty, and excellent fishing and hunting opportunities.
The Forgotten Mermaids was filmed in Blue Springs in 1971. The documentary, was an episode from the popular program….The Under Water World of Jacques Cousteau. The documentary brought attention to the Florida manatees, and the importance of Blue Springs as a winter refuge for these gentle giants, greatly influencing the State to purchase the land and the spring. The park was acquired by the state one year later in 1972 and began the manatee protection program.
Jacques Cousteau was a pioneer in bringing awareness of all the sea creatures of the world, and he was the inventor of the popular Aqua Lung underwater breathing apparatus, which evolved into the diving regulator we have today. Jacques Cousteau was responsible for saving our beautiful Florida Manatees. One man can make a difference!
Our manatee kayaking tour in Blue Springs touches base on some of this fun history, and beautiful Florida wildlife, including our amazing manatees!
Join us on our amazing kayaking tours in Beautiful Blue Springs!
Blue Springs Kayaking Tours
2109 West French Ave. Orange City Fl. 32763
Note from the owner
Kayaking Blue Springs with the Florida Manatee
Of all the critters we encounter on our adventures, the Florida Manatee is indeed the most placid and interesting. For me, their presence brings a magical wonder of peace and a deep connection to the simple purity, of nature’s extravagance. Their grace and elegant poise may only be exceeded by their size and phenomenal existence.
As I release the trials and tension of the day, and allow admission of truth, insanity has found a new degree, in a perfect memory.
At times, as I gaze at GOD’s magnificent creation, I ask….will you be here tomorrow?
As I listen in quiet serenity, the wind whispers in reply….you tell me?
Did you know?
Manatees are not territorial, and do not have complex predator avoidance behavior. In other words, No fear of anything!
Although we see scars on almost every Florida Manatee, they have made a comeback. Which given the growing population of Florida, is a great humane accomplishment, and a miracle in itself. Thanks to a great human being and love of nature, Jacques Cousteau, for bringing the initial awareness, and private, local, and state governments, following suit. Of course, lots of caring folks, called the general public, for which the credit is due. This just shows that we can all make a difference, for the sake of our kids and grand kids, and this place we call home.
Keep up the good work!
The need for speed will always be one of man’s greatest accomplishments. I guess we need to try to get it all in. In a day? In a lifetime?
Just remember. As in life, the journey is just as fun, and important, as the destination.
Slow down and Enjoy!
Owner/Guide, Florida Native & UF Master Naturalist