Complete Guide To Visiting Weeki Wachee Springs State Park
Named by the indigenous Seminole tribe of Indians and meaning little stream or winding river, the 538 acre Weeki Wachee Springs State Park was established in 1947. Surrounded by limestone, the naturally occurring spring is 100 feet wide at its surface and the depth is so deep that the true bottom has never been found. Every day more than 117 million gallons of water flow through the subterranean caverns. The springs are located just 12 miles from the Gulf of Mexico connected by the Weeki Wachee River.
It’s considered one of Florida’s most famous roadside attractions for its legendary underwater Mermaid Shows. Today, you can also take a cruise on a river boat, make a splash on water slides at Buccaneer Bay, swim in the spring’s crystal clear waters and embark on a paddle adventure down the river. It’s an incredible attraction to visit year round; but summer (June through August) is best of all when the water slides are open every day of the week.
Located roughly 50 miles north of Tampa Bay, the park makes for a great day. You can access it by heading north on US-41 or I-589. There are plenty of hotels to choose from in popular Tampa Bay areas like downtown Tampa, Clearwater Beach and St. Petersburg. There’s also a Motel 6 Spring Hill directly across the street from Weeki Wachee Springs State Park.
Things To Do In & Around Weeki Wachee:
Weeki Wachee Springs State Park’s legendary Mermaid Show is the top attraction. The shows are performed three times daily inside a submerged 400-seat auditorium where you’ll watch real life mermaids swim through the spring to perform synchronized swimming ballets of shows like the Little Mermaid and Fish Tails.
Kayak, Canoe or Stand Up Paddle Board (SUP)
Embark on kayak and paddleboard adventures through the clear Weeki Wachee spring waters and river. Go on your own or join a one-hour eco-tour led by a guide who will teach you about the local ecosystem and point out wildlife ranging from manatees to dolphins and wading birds. You’ll learn all about the history of Weeki Wachee, as well as river etiquette and useful kayak and paddling tips.
Adventure at TreeUmph!
Conveniently located within a short drive of Weeki Wachee and Tampa Bay, TreeUmph! offers a totally different kind of outdoor activity. Our aerial adventure course in the trees spans 30 football fields. You’ll zip, climb, swing and soar across hundreds of obstacles like floating logs, climbing walls and elevated bridges - all while safely harnessed to the course. It’s an adventure that’s fun for the whole family.
Weeki Wachee Springs
Buccaneer Bay is a waterpark surrounding the natural Weeki Wachee Springs providing swimming access to park goers. The water remains a constant 74 degrees throughout the year making it the perfect temperature for a refreshing dip. There’s a sandy white beach and a lazy river where you can rent floats and enjoy the natural current. To add to the fun, there are four waterslides that flow into the springs where you can really make a splash. There’s also a Lil’ Mates Caribbean Cove, which consists of a wading pool and water play area for children under six years old. The whole area is supervised by lifeguards to ensure safety and fun.
The Gulf of Mexico is a prime destination for anglers whether deep sea fishing offshore or along the bay’s shallow flats. The key is to hire an expert guide who knows the best spots and the fishing season to guarantee a prime catch. You can expect to find snapper, bonefish, wahoo, jack and many other varieties in the waters around the Tampa Bay area. When it comes to finding a guide, head to local marinas or ask your hotel’s concierge.
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