During the spring and summer months, the spring run is open to kayaks and paddle boards. Resident manatees and even save the manatee club adoptees may still be seen as well as tons of wildlife including bald eagles, alligators, otters, deer, wild turkeys, several beautiful water birds and more. Blue Springs and the St. Johns river is a bird watchers' paradise. The Blue Springs run is beautiful, crystal clear, and full of huge fish and more.
The St Johns River is the longest river in Florida with several tributaries that run off the river, like snake creek, named for its winding route, not for the reptile. Snake creek runs through Hontoon Island and is only about a mile paddle from Blue Springs, and waiting to be explored. This area of the St Johns River, Blue Springs State Park, and Hontoon Island State Park is old Florida at it's best, truly a wildlife paradise, and one of the best places for kayaking in Florida..
After your rental of tour, you can visit the swimming area and go swimming, in the crystal clear water of Blue Springs. Swimming in the spring is much more than just refreshing. it brings a breath of fresh air and awareness of the beauty that surrounds you in this old Florida treasure. Don't forget your mask and snorkel, there is plenty to explore in the spring.
The Florida manatees are extremely protected under federal law, and it is against the law to touch, chase or molest these wonderful creatures. Manatees are curious, so if one comes up to you, pull your paddle out of the water and get your camera ready, however, don't touch.
Learn to Paddle Board!
We offer 3 hour paddle board and kayak rentals with a full lesson for beginners in this wildlife paradise. Our paddle board instructor and University of Florida master naturalist will teach you to paddle board with a full lesson that will have you up and paddling in no time, of course, you can also sit rather than stand if you are more comfortable. Your instructor will also enlighten you on how to interact with the wildlife of the area safely, as well as explain some fun facts about these magnificent animals. Your instructor will go with you until everyone is comfortable on their boards. We also offer guided tours for this adventure.
Interacting with manatees on a paddle board is truly a lifetime, memorable experience, and you get a birds-eye view of all the fish in the crystal clear water of Blue Springs. Please keep in mind that there is no guarantee to see manatees here this time of year, however, resident manatees and some that are just passing buy and save the manatee adoptees may be seen frequently.
Paddle Boards- $50.00 for three hours. Ages 13 and under must ride on a board with an adult. / Max weight 250 pounds
Solo Kayaks: $50.00 for three hours Ages 14 plus / Max weight 300 pounds
Tandem Kayaks/two people: $60.00 for three hours / Max weight 550 pounds These kayaks also have a third sitting area for a small child between the legs of the rear paddler.
Rental Times: 9:00 & 10:00 A.M. | Mornings are best to see more wildlife and usually calmer winds. Winds can mean the difference between a nice casual easy paddle and a workout. We will not send anyone out in high winds or bad conditions. The state park also closes half the spring run to paddling after 11:00 so you must be out of the swimming area with your kayak or paddle board before 11:00 a.m. The three hour rental allows you plenty of time to explore the spring and the river and all the amazing wildlife that lives there.
We offer a 2 hour guided wildlife tour at 9:00 A.M. & 12:00 P.M. This tour offers kayaks and paddle boards and explores the beautiful spring and the St Johns river. The tour includes - a short lesson, paddle boards, solo and tandem kayaks, a life vest, paddles, dry bags, and a professional, naturalist guide. Bring your camera!
Tour Prices - Solo Kayaks & paddle board $70.00 Tandem Kayaks $ 130.00 ages 6+ only. Kids 6-13 must ride in a tandem with an adult. Kids younger than 6 are welcome on our private tours.
Private Tours - 4 person minimum $80.00 per person
Beginner friendly! All our tours & lessons come with lessons.
You must be 18 years of age or be with someone who is to rent paddle boards & kayaks
We only use real newer epoxy paddleboards, not plastic or blow-up inflatables, with carbon fiber lightweight paddles. Our kayaks are sit-on-top with integrated padded back seats for your lower back comfort and we also use carbon fiber lightweight paddles for kayaks that are easy on your shoulders and arms.
Our equipment, service, knowledge, and attention to detail is second to none, so you can rest assured that you will have the safest and most fun, fun, fun, you can have on the water. Location: French Landing located at 2398 W French Ave. Orange City 32763 just past the entrance of Blue Springs State Park at the dead-end of the road. No restroom facilities. The last public restroom facility is located at Valentine Park located about 1 mile west at 1511 W French Ave.