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“Wonderful scenery but the mosquitos will eat you alive!!!”
Review of Rock Springs Run

Rock Springs Run
Ranked #5 of 20 things to do in Apopka
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Tributary of Florida's Wekiva River is ideal for canoeing, birdwatching, viewing wildlife and foliage.
Orlando, FL
Level Contributor
122 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
“Wonderful scenery but the mosquitos will eat you alive!!!”
Reviewed October 23, 2011

Kings Landing (aka Rock Springs Run) is a great place to rent a canoe or kayak and paddle down river to the Wekiva Island site. It's a very leisurely run as you're going down river the whole time, a trip that averages 3.5-4.0 hours depending on whether you stop for lunch or not. Now (fall) is a great time as you start out a little cool and then the weather warms up as you near the end of your trip. The Kings Landing office has been renovated and now shows alot of stuffed alligators and such. The cost is either $30 to rent one of their canoes which they will then pick up and return you back to Kings Landing (check with office as to when pickup times are scheduled as you can end up waiting awhile if you're the first to arrive) or you can launch your own canoe for $10. We did the latter, leaving one car at Wekiva Island so as not to have to wait for their van, rather returning on our own schedule. The car ride from Wekiva Island to Kings Landing is about 15 minutes. We picked up cans, bottles and trash along the way which lengthened our trip to about 4.5 hours. Although normally not a problem in the past, the mosquitoes were everywhere and we didn't have any bug spray ... so remember to bring bug spray just in case. We were lucky enough to see an otter, a rarety but always fun to watch when you do get to see one as they are generally very playful. No alligators, but lots of birds, fish, and turtles. As of the date of this post, there were 2 downed trees blocking passage on the river (unknown as to when the State will clear them out), one of which we were able to get past through a curve in the tree, the other we had to port the canoe over the tree, although it was shallow so fairly easy to do (mind you the dog wasn't too thrilled with what was going on!). Unless you get an early start right when they open (8am), you're much better served bringing some food and stopping along the way for lunch. We started out around 9:20am and didn't run in to another canoe until we were within about 30 minutes from Wekiva Island and then we started seeing canoes that were heading up river (although generally folks don't get very far going in that direction before turning around and heading back to either the State Park or Wekiva Island, both places at which you can also rent canoes and kayaks).

Visited October 2011
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2 Thank jd50005
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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96 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Brilliant, awesome, best day we had in Orlando”
Reviewed May 25, 2011

My family of three, including a 6 year old, went on a 4.5 hour kayaking tour of Rock Springs Run. We booked our tour with Central Florida Kayak Tours (http://www.centralfloridakayaktours.com/) a few weeks before arriving. Jenny and Kenny were wonderful and easy to work with and the prices more than reasonable. We joined 4 other people in addition to our guides Kenny and Wayne and set out in the morning. The guides were prepared, professional, and very knowledgeable. Our 6 year old son shared a 2-man kayak with Wayne. Rock Springs Run was dead gorgeous - the water was crystal clear and was usually very shallow, the flora incredible, and we saw alligators, river otters, turtles, numerous birds and loads of fish. Half way in we stopped in a shady spot and had a snack. It was so beautiful and so peaceful. At the end of the tour we finished at an incredible swimming spot on the run - our son was in heaven! When we return to Florida, we will definitely be giving Jenny and Kenny a call to arrange for another tour. It was the highlight of our stay.

Visited May 2011
Helpful?
3 Thank 123veo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Winter Garden, Florida
Level Contributor
97 reviews
29 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 134 helpful votes
“natural Florida”
Reviewed July 27, 2009

This is a great place to visit for tourists and locals alike. There is canoeing and tubing(which is rented outside of the park and you must bring it in yourself) take a short hike or walk along the boardwalk or just lazing around downstream. The water is a steady 72 degrees so it's best to go in the summer and not on the weekends as it tends to get crowded.
Bring a lunch and have a picnic. IT will be a wonderful day:)

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3 Thank raisinette
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rochester, New York
Level Contributor
19 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Rock Springs Rocks!”
Reviewed February 4, 2008

This is the real Florida experience. I have canoed Rock Springs many times with and without children and wanted to refute what has been said about it. Of course, if you go canoing you should be prepared to get wet! Thats half the fun. Any physical activity is work and attitude is key. Rock Springs is one of the most magical places left in Florida. It is a bird sanctuary in the winter and all manners of visiting birds can be seen. The alligators won't harm you if you respect them and it is a chance to see them in their native habitat. The current is strong and will carry you leisurely without much effort if you are not in a hurry and want to take your time. As far as branches being down , there must have been a recent storm b/c I have never seen that there. Don't miss this beautiful spot. The end of the run is Wekiva state park which has a beautiful swimming lagoon.

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4 Thank krnll5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Florida
Level Contributor
161 reviews
50 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 100 helpful votes
“Not an easy trip”
Reviewed May 14, 2004

Basic conclusion: it's NOT an easy trip.Don't attempt this unless you have some canoeing experience: and CERTAINLY not with young children.The Rock Springs run is a one-way downstream trip; you put in at one place near Rock Springs park and end up at Wekiwa Marina downstream. They ferry you between the two points by van. I liked the notion of the one-way aspect: if we did the usual rental on the rivers where you go downstream & then have to come back, I could see only too clearly what would happen: “just a bit further, just a bit further” on the downstream leg, and then busting an aorta fighting back up against the current…So anyway, the Rock Springs run is billed as an easy, tranquil downstream trip past stunning scenery and interesting wildlife. All the glowing reports on the Internet agree! Hah!So, we started out, my older daughter & I in one canoe and my wife & younger daughter in the other. First mishap: about 100 yards from starting, we got stuck in the remains of some old dock. No problem, says my daughter, I’ll just hop out and push us off. Unfortunately, she didn’t have an appreciation yet of just how unstable canoes are. Of course, it tipped over, dumping me into the water. I was dressed in street clothes; I wasn’t expecting to get severely wet… all my credit cards, keys, money etc got saturated. The camera went in too; we don’t know yet if it survived, we’re letting it dry out for a day before we try to turn it on.Well, there was no place to beach the canoe and turn it over to empty it, so we had to do the best we could just standing in the water. Which left us with about three inches of water in the bottom. So there I was, in saturated clothes for the rest of the trip with my shoes sloshing in three inches of water. If we’d known what was to come, we would have aborted then and there. The next three miles or so are heavily wooded, and every hundred feet or so there would be a fallen tree branch or trunk across the waterway, constituting an obstacle ranging from difficult to impossible. In the worst case, there was nothing for it but for me to get out of the canoe into chest-deep water, and, struggling for purchase in two feet of mud, manhandle the damn canoe over the trunk. Easy downstream trip, my ***!After a short while of this we were wishing we had never embarked on the venture: but there are no intermediate take-out points. Once you start, you have no choice but to go the whole 8 miles down to the marina.Well, after battling branches for three miles or so, we came to a different stretch where the trees receded and the run turns into a channel (often very narrow) between beds of water plants. My older daughter & I managed to navigate this section without too much difficulty, but my wife had a lot of trouble. Our youngest really isn’t strong or experienced enough to help a lot with guiding the canoe, and every minute or so they would get turned broadside, with both ends of the canoe stuck in the weeds. At which point the young daughter would be crying or screaming, with my wife swearing as she struggled to extricate them from the situation. I tried to help where we could, but there usually wasn’t anywhere we could secure our canoe so someone could get back to them.My wife said this section was the worst part of it for her!What with all the problems, it took us five and a half hours (instead of the supposed four) to get to the take-out point. At which point we were knackered, shot, gaffed, DONE. I haven’t been so bone-weary and stiff in a long time.And, well, I guess the scenery WAS stunning, and we DID see a lot of wildlife. (Apparently everyone else saw three alligators, but I didn’t manage to spot a one of them, dammit.)But frankly we were mostly just too frazzled to appreciate any of it….

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5 Thank xtenkfarpl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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