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“Experience the REAL Florida”

Ichetucknee Springs State Park
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Fort Myers, Florida
Level Contributor
62 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Experience the REAL Florida”
Reviewed June 17, 2013

I've been tubing the Ichetucknee since I was a UF student back in the 1980s. It's funny to think that so many people visit Florida or even reside here and never experience what I consider to be the "real" Florida attractions. This is one of them. Pack a cooler (you can't take them on the springs but there are picnic tables in the South entrance throughout) with a Publix sub, some chips and drinks and you're ready to go. Rent tubes from the numerous vendors along the country roads leading to the park. They'll help twine the tubes to the roof of your car or truck.

We've brought our daughters since before they could swim. They're all high school and college aged now and still love the river. If you have little ones who can't swim all that well bring a life jacket for them. They're going to want to swim around in the river - and although it is a "lazy" river the current can be deceivingly swift. I am a good swimmer (triathlete) and have to work some days to make progress upstream depending upon the volume that day. But by no means is this river like rapids you find in the mountains. On a tube the current appears lazy and relaxed.

I wear those Keen water shoes so as to protect my feet - especially when exiting the river. There are logs and such that you might bump into as well. But we've all gone barefoot many times without incident. Flip flops no good unless you tie them to your tube - (bring the twine from your roof rack on the river and tie your tubes together so your family stays together and you can hop off the tube for a swim without worrying where it might go on it's own).

Don't be afraid of gators or snakes. I've tubed this river dozens of times and have only seen a gator two times. And they were a good distance away on the banks. Have seen a snake or two but again, very uncommon as they stay away from people. You mostly see fish and turtles.

The tram will take you back to the parking lot (South entrance) once you are done. If you want to eat lunch then go again you can or there are drop areas for your tubes - you don't have to bring them back to the vendor. They pick them up from the drop area inside the park.

Visited June 2013

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
4 Thank GatorCraig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Fort Myers, Florida
Level Contributor
62 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“Come here for the REAL Florida experience”
Reviewed June 17, 2013

I've been tubing the Ichetucknee since I was a UF student back in the 1980s. It's funny to think that so many people visit Florida or even reside here and never experience what I consider to be the "real" Florida attractions. This is one of them. Pack a cooler (you can't take them on the springs but there are picnic tables in the South entrance throughout) with a Publix sub, some chips and drinks and you're ready to go. Rent tubes from the numerous vendors along the country roads leading to the park. They'll help twine the tubes to the roof of your car or truck.

We've brought our daughters since before they could swim. They're all high school and college aged now and still love the river. If you have little ones who can't swim all that well bring a life jacket for them. They're going to want to swim around in the river - and although it is a "lazy" river the current can be deceivingly swift. I am a good swimmer (triathlete) and have to work some days to make progress upstream depending upon the volume that day. But by no means is this river like rapids you find in the mountains. On a tube the current appears lazy and relaxed.

I wear those Keen water shoes so as to protect my feet - especially when exiting the river. There are logs and such that you might bump into as well. But we've all gone barefoot many times without incident. Flip flops no good unless you tie them to your tube - (bring the twine from your roof rack on the river and tie your tubes together so your family stays together and you can hop off the tube for a swim without worrying where it might go on it's own).

Don't be afraid of gators or snakes. I've tubed this river dozens of times and have only seen a gator two times. And they were a good distance away on the banks. Have seen a snake or two but again, very uncommon as they stay away from people. You mostly see fish and turtles.

The tram will take you back to the parking lot (South entrance) once you are done. If you want to eat lunch then go again you can or there are drop areas for your tubes - you don't have to bring them back to the vendor. They pick them up from the drop area inside the park.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
10 Thank GatorCraig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ontheroadagn7
Level Contributor
572 reviews
180 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 165 helpful votes
“Lots of fun”
Reviewed June 16, 2013

This state park is fun. Make sure you visit both the South entrance (where all the tubing takes place) and the North entrance. At the North entrance it's a short walk to the spring head and it is set up like a natural pool.

South area is more focused on tubing. Some picnic tables near parking areas. You rent a tube or raft from any of the many vendors in the area. They tie them to your car and a tram takes you to the put in spot. Another tram brings you back where you can keep your tube, have a picnic meal (they also have a decent snack bar) and go back for another float. If you've had enough with one trip down the river (abut an hour and a half) you return your tube to the area for your vendor, return to your car and go (or tail gate, etc....)

Pretty crowded on summer weekends, but everyone seems to get along.

Really beautiful. Water is cold, but you get used to it.

Note: If you lock up your stuff in your car (trunk of course) they will keep your keys at the snack bar for a charge of $2. No water bottles allowed near the river at either location.

Note: You pay the outside vendor to rent the tube and then you pay to enter the park (different charge whether you are tubing or just visiting...)

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank ontheroadagn7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
High Springs, Florida
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Beautiful!!”
Reviewed June 10, 2013

Went tubing down the river recently, I have got to say the clear water and secluded feeling made everything worth it. I Will definitely go again!

Visited May 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Andnister
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gainesville, Florida
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Nice water experience”
Reviewed June 4, 2013

View fish and fauna as you tube down the river and pass through natural surroundings and run into other tube riders.
Fun for the whole family.

Helpful?
1 Thank Loretta M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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