Wekiwa Springs State Park, near Orlando
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Wekiwa Springs is like nature's solution to the need for a beach when you're nowhere near the coast! Here you can get out of the congestion of the city and come get your fill of nature. Year-round you can swim in the refreshing, but not too cold, water which stays at 72 degrees no matter how cold it is outside! I visited in February on a 50 degree weekday and there were a dozen people enjoying the crystal clear water! What happy faces!
These springs are lovely because there is a hill that leads down to the springs. You can sit on the lawn and have a picnic with a view. Or you can sit on the concrete edge of the springs right next to where the headspring is bubbling up. What joy!
There is a boardwalk that circles the spring, over a bridge. Past the bridge is a small path that leads to kayak rentals, and here you can paddle on the river that leads out of the spring and see alligators!
If you bring a snorkeling mask you can look down at the spring and see how cavernous and deep it is! There isn't much else to see below the surface, except an occasional fish or turtle. The river leading to this spring is too shallow for manatees to pass through. If you want to see manatees in winter, go to Blue Spring State Park, 37 minutes away.
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Wekiwa Springs State Park is located at 1800 Wekiwa Circle, Apopka FL 32712, 30 minutes from downtown Orlando.
Entrance is $6 per car and there is plenty of free parking close to the spring. On weekends it fills up quickly though.
This is an interactive map, you can zoom and move it.
Overall Visitor Rating: Unrated.