Blue Spring State Park

Blue Spring State Park, Orange City: Hours, Address, Blue Spring State Park Reviews: 4.5/5

Blue Spring State Park
4.5
State Parks • Parks
Read more
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Monday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Tuesday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Wednesday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Thursday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Friday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Saturday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Sunday
12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Write a review
About
State park offering a variety of outdoor activities including camping, hiking, canoeing, fishing, boating, snorkeling and scuba diving.
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.
What is Travelers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travelers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travelers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.

Top ways to experience Blue Spring State Park and nearby attractions

Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

4.5
2,043 reviews
Excellent
1,582
Very good
369
Average
64
Poor
15
Terrible
13

Nicole
Miami, FL18 contributions
Family
What an awesome time we had here. Entrance wasn’t an issue, but we went on a Friday morning. I did read that the park will close once capacity has been reached. There are two sections of the park, one for kayaking/canoeing, and the other for swimming and tubing. We didn’t go kayaking, so my review is only for the other area.

You’re able to bring your own rafts and floats as long as they’re under 6 feet. We saw people with pool noodles and snorkeling gear. You can also scuba dive here. If you’re bringing your own rafts, make sure to bring them blown up already or bring your own pump to blow them up, although they will blow them up for you for a small fee. You can also rent rafts for a fee.

The swimming area was great, my kids had a blast. The tubing section was small and short but perfect for my kids aged 10, 7, and 10 months (more so for the baby).

To go tubing, you walk less than 10 minutes and enter on your own to slowly float back to the swimming area. It was a lot of fun. Water stays at a constant 72-73 degrees all year. We saw manatees, and a ton of different fish!
Written July 2, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

BenGruda
Potsdam, NY470 contributions
Everyone seems to head here when the weather is cold, and the Manatees are seeking warmer water. Unfortunately, we were there when it was quite hot, so not a Manatee to be found! That did not take away from the beauty of this park. Lots of shade to and places for a picnic lunch. There were Park Rangers everywhere ready to answer you questions. A gift shop and an ice cream shop were also available.

The walkway/boardwalk was easy to navigate, and the water ..... oh my, so clear! You could see quite a variety of fish swimming around everywhere!

Probably my next trip will be to see the Manatees huddled together! I bet it is a sight to see!
Written April 2, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

blackriverwoman
Virginia423 contributions
This is one of the most beautiful places we have been to. We saw @ 14 manatee in blue green clear water from the spring. There is a boardwalk that you can walk the entire length of the spring before it goes into the St; John River. We took the 2 hour boat tour and saw 2 bald eagles, osprey, alligators, turtles, and lots of different birds and plants along with a manatee that came right up to the dock. We also rented a kayak and went into a bay area and a manatee came right up to us. There is a $2500 fine for touching one, so even though we could have petted it we didn't. We stayed in one of the cabins which has a gas fireplace, air conditioning, bathroom, and everything you need except soap and shampoo. When we got there, several of the windows were unlocked and someone banged 3 times on the back of the cabin that night which makes me wonder about the security at the park. Some of the wands are gone from the blinds and we had to twist them by hand and kept the blinds closed at all times. Black mosquitoes were coming up from the bathroom drain and we had to keep a damp wash cloth over it. There is no stopper for the bathtub and the screen was cut or ripped on the porch. There is a hook lock for the screened porch and a twist dead bolt and chain lock for the door. Be sure to take repellant because the mosquitoes will eat you alive on the boardwalk. The Thursby house on the property is open for self tours Wed.-Sun. and is very interesting with exhibits on life in the 1800's. There is a camp store and two places to buy sandwiches, ice cream, etc. and a gift shop. There is a trail, but only walk to the end of the forest because the rest of the trail is in sand and hot open scrub brush.
Written January 19, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

BelikinBeer
Bradenton, FL424 contributions
Go here midweek Jan-Mar, get here early (park opens at 08:00), get your 2hour boat tour ticket and enjoy the many viewing platforms off of the 1/2mile boardwalk. There are two Manatee counts, 1 by park rangers and 1 by the volunteers who paddle the creek.. Gift shop, concessions, bathrooms, kayak and canoe rentals...lot's to do and if you do the boat tour a good 4 hours of time is needed. If you get here after 11:00, expect lot's of cars, limited parking and maybe no more seats on the 13:00 boat cruise...
Written February 5, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Robin T
Plymouth, WI5 contributions
Couples
Segway tour it was an hour and a half long. There's a 20-minute training session before the tour. You can opt out if you don't like it. Our tour guide Shane was very knowledgeable. The cost is $55 per person. I need a 24-hour advance notice to make sure they have a guide that day
Written February 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Renee S
Salem, MA167 contributions
We went in January and it would have definitely been warm enough to swim in the spring area. We just saw this on our drive to the panhandle an decided to stop, but next time, absolutely will be swimming, We saw a few manatees off in the distance on the boardwalk and quite a bit of birds and other wildlife. I know you can kayak, but that was not something we had done. The water is a bit darker in some areas so it may be difficult to see manatees depending on where they are, but would definitely recommend this stop.
Written January 9, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Joe G
Vernon, NJ238 contributions
Couples
We visited Blue Spring State Park for the second time in two years. Really great park for all ages. There is camping sites for tents and/or car/campers with fire pits etc. Canoeing, Kayaking, nice hiking trails and the best thing- is the Blue Spring itself which comes out of the ground at its source called “The Boil”. It is an upwelling of absolutely pure (72 degrees year round) ground water that puts out over 1 million gallons daily which eventually feeds into the North flowing St. John’s River. The Boil itself is a large opening in the bottom of the river which goes down more than 150 feet and continues for an unknown distance underground. Since 1973 10 divers (many were very experienced) have died trying to find the bottom of this spring. You can dive there but must have Cave Diver Certification and need to register with the Park Rangers. In summer, you can bring your inner tube (or rent one) and starting at The Boil, drift downriver for several hundred yards, then get out and hike back to The Boil along a nice wooden boardwalk and jump in again for the next float. Canoeing and Kayaking allowed up to a point but not to The Boil itself. There are Huge four to five foot Gar (fish) everywhere you look in the crystal clear water. Also found there are Channel Catfish, Bowfin, Tilapia, Striped Mullet, Largemouth Bass, Tarpon Longear, Bluegill, Readbreast and Warmouth. You can see down at least 20 feet in the crystal clear water from observation decks all along the boardwalk which parallels the river. Oh yes- there are also alligators (not sure how that works with the swimming and tubing in the same river!!!). Last but not least, in Winter (January & February) since the water is a constant 72 degrees, the Manatees come up river to Blue Spring and hang out to stay warm. They cannot survive long at less than 66 degrees. In peak season up to 300 can be seen in Blue Spring. PS: come early as the park fills to capacity by noon as tourists want to see the Manatees. We saw three in the first 5 minutes we were there. There is also a boat tour that leaves the dock at 10:00AM & 1:00 PM. Great place for kids, families and older folks. Snack Bar and Gift Shop. Old Mansion of the original owners of the land were Blue Spring is located is also available for a tour (no charge).
Written January 21, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

sc457mike
Saint Helena Island, SC125 contributions
Friends
We had been here once before a few years ago and loved it. We came back with an elderly friend who lives in the area to take the boat ride on the St Johns River. Here are a few tips:

There is one parking lot for the far end of the park along the River where the tour boat docks (which fills up early) and another a bit closer to the park entrance near the spring. It is a very long walk for anyone with mobility problems to walk from the springs lot to the boat dock.

The boat ride is lovely and the river is beautiful. We tried to make reservations online and it showed both the 10am and 1pm cruises full but when we called the next morning there was space on both cruises. - so don’t depend on the website. Our cruise was eventually filled, so when we boarded we took one of the last empty row of seats for 3 people on the boat which was on the left side. The boat operator, who is also the guide, sits on the right side in the rear so the entire cruise was conducted for the right side of the boat. We cruised down the right side of the river and the guide pointed out and stopped at things he saw on the right side of the boat. People of course got excited when there was a bird, alligator or manatee to see and they jumped up from their seats totally blocking the view of everyone on the left side - so we probably saw about 30% of the guided tour. I would take the boat ride again but only if I could be at the front of the line to get on so I could take a seat on the right side.

Written February 3, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Travel Med Mama
Rocky Hill, CT73 contributions
Beautiful area to stop! Only a $6 per car for entry.
Walk along the trails and observe the beautiful springs. Be sure to bring a bathing suit and jump in! Cold but so refreshing!! High recommend bringing goggles or a snorkel mask. There are tubes to rent which seemed fun.
When the manatees come through they make you get out of the water but guides showed you were they were and explained their "rehab" story. Nothing quite like the view and how clear the springs are. Fun for all ages!
Written October 27, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

SavannahPhotographer
Savannah, GA3 contributions
Couples
Stayed here for four days on the way to Fort Wilderness/Disney. The campground is very wooded so there is great privacy between campsites. We have a 33 ft travel trailer and it took finesse to back into the campsite (#10) because it was at 90 degrees to the narrow one way road. Some of the other sites were set at an easier angle for backing into. The bathrooms looked brand new and we're kept immaculately clean, kudos to the hosts. Had one of the best showers ever, tons of water pressure and unlimited hot water. Pretty much worth the trip just to take a shower here. The springs area is very pretty and just a short walk from the campground. Unfortunately, they were closed to swimming because manatees were still there. The only problem with Blue Springs is trying to get a campsite (the same with ALL Florida state campgrounds).
Written March 25, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Showing results 1-10 of 1,942
Anything missing or inaccurate?
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Frequently Asked Questions about Blue Spring State Park

Blue Spring State Park is open:
  • Sun - Sat 12:00 AM - 11:59 PM
Buy tickets in advance on Tripadvisor. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel at least 24 hours before the start date of your tour for a full refund.

We recommend booking Blue Spring State Park tours ahead of time to secure your spot. If you book with Tripadvisor, you can cancel up to 24 hours before your tour starts for a full refund. See all 7 Blue Spring State Park tours on Tripadvisor