For many Canadians, winter is the time to hunker down and hibernate, but the Sunshine State takes an “Outdoor Everything” approach to winter, offering a never-ending supply of new and unique experiences that take full advantage of the mild temperatures enjoyed this time of year.
From air boat rides and dolphin discoveries, to hiking, biking and paddling galore, winter in Florida is all about getting outside and taking it all in. Here is just a snapshot of how you can spend winter this year:
On the Gulf coast, the Bradenton Area boasts exquisite nature preserves, mangrove tunnels and hidden creeks that visitors can explore on guided or self-guided eco kayak tours. Top locations include Robinson Nature Preserve, Emerson Point Preserve, and the gentle waters in and around Anna Maria Island. Happy Paddler Kayak Tours & Ecoventures is among one of the many companies that offer tour options.
In northwest Florida, Lagoon Pontoon in Panama City Beach is one of the companies that takes visitors to picturesque Shell Island, an approximately 11-kilometre-long undeveloped barrier island that runs between the Gulf of Mexico and the St. Andrew Bay. Bask on the unspoiled white sands, snorkel in the clear waters, spot wild dolphins as they play next to your boat… it is Florida at its best.
For mountain biking enthusiasts, enjoy 700+ miles of snow-free, in-town trails in Tallahassee. Offering varying terrain (the Tallahassee Mountain Bike Association’s motto is “Not all of Florida is Flat”), trail connectivity and an extensive tree canopy, the riding experience here is unmatched anywhere else in the State.
Fishing, of course, is another popular pastime, and best of all, no cutting through ice required! Down in Islamorada, in the Florida Keys, the winter brings with it the opportunity to catch Sailfish, Barracuda, Grouper and Yellowtail Snapper, among others, making this a great time of year for anglers.
For more on the Sunshine State, go to www.VISITFLORIDA.com .