5 Excellent Places for Beginners to Kayak in Florida

5 Excellent Places for Beginners to Kayak in Florida


The diverse range of waterways throughout the Sunshine State make for a satisfying experience for any kayaker! But for those just starting out, it’s best to find an area with calmer waters, rentals, and potentially safety courses and lessons to learn the basics. From cool lagoons to large lakes, you’ll find something great for those picking up a paddle for the first time. Here are five great spots to find your footing in Florida! 

1. Rainbow River, Dunnellon, FL

This is a prime spot to hone your kayaking skills. Kayaking, canoeing, and tubing are popular activities on Rainbow River. The waters are calm and easy to explore, so beginners will soon feel comfortable on their adventure. Rentals are available on site, too. Kayaks and canoes go for $8 an hour and double kayaks for $10 an hour.

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2. Indian River and Mosquito Lagoon

This kayaking tour will be unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. Join A Day Away Kayak Tours for their Dino Bio Kayak Tour. On warm summer nights, A Day Away invites guests to witness a stunning phenomenon. Indian River and Mosquito Lagoon glow with single-cell microorganisms called dinoflagellates. Any movement in the water, with your boat or paddle, lights up the waters with bioluminescence. The sight is truly breathtaking. 

3. Suwannee River

Take a trip with American Canoe Adventures for an easy and affordable exploration of the Suwannee River near White Springs, Florida. American Canoe Adventures offers day trips all year round, six days a week from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Trips range in distance from three miles to 12, depending on how strenuous of a trek you can handle. 

4. Lake Worth

Try out Lake Worth’s locally-owned Kayak Lake Worth for an easy and convenient kayaking adventure! Guests will mostly be exploring the Lake Worth Lagoon area in Palm Beach County. This lagoon is the largest estuary in the county. The waters are very easy to navigate, making for a relaxing trip that beginners will love. You’ll even get to spot some stunning wildlife, which may include the occasional manatee or dolphin! 

5. Key Largo

There may not be anything more stunning than exploring Key Largo on a kayak. Florida Bay Outfitters' location “is the perfect starting point to begin your tropical adventure,” according to its website. For rentals, the selection is huge. Choose from sit-in kayaks, sit-on-top kayaks, clear bottom kayaks, paddleboards, and much more. Their eco tour bring guests through the Florida Keys and Everglades National Park. Choose from three-hour tours or five-day backcountry tours. Florida Bay Outfitters has something for every level of skill. 

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