Added by Dave Miller

Within the small town of Ocala, FL exists one of the world’s largest Artesian Springs that produces over 550 million gallons of water per day. This one-of-a-kind spring hosts a variety of eco-tourism activities, from guided electric powered glass bottom boat rides to canoe/kayak rentals which allow visitors to explore the water way on their own. Located just an hour and a half north of Orlando, Silver Springs is the perfect day trip to one of nature’s best theme parks.

Silver Springs State Park is rich with history dating back to the 1500’s when it was first settled by the Timucua Indians. This area has also been explored by the Spanish and was once a settlement of the Seminole Indians.  Native American relics can be seen at the museum located in the park or when exploring the springs by boat or kayak/canoe;  authentic dugout canoes are currently lying on the bottom of the river.  If you are looking to explore more current history, Silver Springs State Park was utilized in the filming of Tarzan films and other noted TV shows and movies. Several movie props continue to find their home on the river and can be seen during tours and self-guided expeditions.

Silver Springs State Park has a large ecotourism presence as sustainability of the spring and waterways is an important goal of the local community. The park utilizes electric powered glass bottom boats to explore and provide guided tours of the Headspring in an effort to conserve the natural beauty of the crystal clear river.

Along with glass-bottom boat tours, the park offers visitors the ability to rent or utilize personal canoes  or kayaks to explore the springs and tributaries. If visitors desire to explore the headspring without being on the water, there is a large viewing deck that provides access to peer into the beautiful blue depths of the springs. 

Along with beautiful springs, the Silver Springs State Park hosts a list of amenities including camping, a natural history museum, a replica of an old Florida Cracker town, miles of trails, and even an old fashioned ice-cream shop. The park is a great location to bring your family as it features kid friendly activities and a playground.  Wildlife Photographers love Silver Springs State Park due to the diversity of wildlife; alligators, multiple species of turtles and fish, and if you are lucky, the ever popular Rhesus monkeys can be found around the park.  Birders also find the Silver Springs State Park a great location for viewing cormorants, great blue heron, egrets, ibis, and limpkin.

Park admission is $2.00 per person (If you are Service Connected Disabled through the Department of Veteran Affairs don’t forget to ask about your Lifetime State Park Pass)

Glass bottom boat rides $11.00 per person

Kayak rental is $20.00 per person per hour with an all-day rental option.

Self-launch of personal Canoe/Kayak is $4.00

Camping rates are through the Reserve America website like the other Florida State Parks. 

Read More


Stand Up Paddle
Adult Beverages
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Handicap Accessible
Picnic Area


Have you done this adventure? Be the first to leave a review!

Stay Nearby

Silver Springs, Florida

Lake Shore Group Camp

Overview Lake Shore Group Campground sits on the north shore of Fore Lake in Ocala National Forest. It is a favorite for scout, church and civic groups, as well as large families and reunions.Recre...

Fort McCoy, Florida

The Marjorie Rawlings Cottage

The Cottage is one of the oldest in the Fort McCoy area dating back to before the turn of the century in the 1900s. This cottage was once the doctor's office in the small town where Marjorie K. Raw...

From $89/night

Fort McCoy, Florida

Carlie's Cottage

Each of our cottages are completely furnished to meet most, if not all of your needs. The living areas are complete with music with many CD’s. Be sure to bring some of your favorites along as well!...

From $159/night

Fort McCoy, Florida

Line Cabin

At The Griffin Ranch, we have captured the romance and elegance of a by-gone era. Our ranch is set on 30 acres hosting cabins, wooded areas, pastures, and many of the local wildlife. We are a worki...

From $169/night

Nearby Adventures

  • Hike the Bear-N-Oak Trail to Indian Lake

    The adventure begins at the main trailhead and parking area for The Bear-N-Oak hiking trail. Located on the East side of County Rd 35 just north of Baseline and Hwy 326 intersection. Grab everything in the packing list and prepare to enjoy a leisu...

    1.4 miles

  • Kayak Silver Glen Springs

    Silver Glen Springs is a popular recreational area that has many activities for the entire family. Located in Ocala National Forrest this park sits on a spring leading out to Lake George. You are able rent Kayaks on site and are able to rent them ...

  • Snorkel & Dive at Devil's Den

    Located in central Florida, this prehistoric spring is a MUST to add on your bucket list. Devil’s Den is a cave that has an underground spring inside. The spring is crystal clear and is a stable 72 degrees F year round. This spot is well known to ...

  • Camp at Alexander Springs

    Alexander Springs Recreation Area is an incredible natural area that provides something for any adventure seeker to love.  The main attraction here is the beautiful headspring, which is one of the 27 first magnitude springs here in Florida.  This ...

    1 miles 0 ft gain

  • Escape to the Sunshine

    VISIT FLORIDA, serves as Florida's official source for travel planning. What can be discovered beyond Florida’s 825 miles of beaches? How about 320 freshwater springs, 175 state parks, infinite mangrove tunnels and hidden caverns. Let your adventure begin. Follow Your Sunshine.

    Learn More