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Blue Spring

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3651870blueSpringsBy Water 28.941846, -81.342397

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The largest spring on the St. Johns River, Blue Spring is a designated Manatee Refuge and the winter home (mid-November through March) to a growing population of West Indian Manatees. For centuries, the spring area was home for Native Americans. In 1766 it was visited by Colonial American botanist John Bartram, but it wasn´t until 1856 that it was settled by Louis Thursby and his family. The Thursby house, built in 1872, remains standing. The spring´s crystal clear, 73 degree water can be enjoyed by swimmers, snorkelers, and certified scuba divers with a partner. Swimming or diving with the manatees is not permitted; this rule is strictly enforced. The river is popular for fishing, canoeing, and boating. River boat tours are available; for reservations, call St. Johns River Cruises at (386) 917-0724. The park has plenty of picnic areas and a hiking trail. For overnight stays, air-conditioned cabins, a full-facility campground, and primitive campsites are available.

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Hontoon Island State Park

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HNI-Cabin-parksjr

By Water  28.974678, -81.357816

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This island, located in the St. Johns River in Volusia County, welcomes visitors to enjoy nature and history in quiet solitude. The island is accessible only by private boat or park ferry. Evidence of Native American habitation over thousands of years can be witnessed as visitors hike through the park. Stop in and walk through the impressive visitor center to learn more about the many inhabitants and uses of Hontoon Island over the years. Boating, canoeing, and fishing are popular activities and canoe rentals are available. Picnic areas include tables, grills, and a playground. Overnight boat slip rentals are also available. The park's ferry operates daily from 8:00 a.m. to one hour before sunset. Located six miles west of Deland off State Road 44

Hontoon Island State Park offers overnight boatslips, which are available on a "first come, first served basis" . Reservations are not required–advance reservations are not accepted.

 

 

 

 


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