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Ways to Experience A Day Away Kayak Tours
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Reviewed August 20, 2012

The staff and guides are great and really know their stuff. We have done this trip twice, in 2008 and again in 2012. The 2008 trip was better as the bio was really going that night. It was so bright. I know they can not control the quality of what is a wild animal. I will say the only thing that miffed me on the trip was that the delay as we were waiting for one person who was late. My husband and I and may others showed up 15 to 30 minutes early as we were asked so I was upset at having to wait over 20 extra minutes. over all a great trip and I tell everyone that they have to try it.

Date of experience: August 2012
1  Thank Spacegirl64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 8, 2012

We took the night time tour to see the bioluminescence. It was a fabulous adventure! There were two adults and two 13 year olds in our party and we rented two double kayaks. The guides, Justin and Ashley, were great teachers and very informative. Since you are in the dark, it is easy to bump into other kayakers and get them and yourselves wet so just keep a good sense of humor! It's all worth it when you see sparks flying off your oars and fingers. The water is just magical!! Of all the adventures we took with our teens in Florida, this trip was at the very top. Be prepared to get wet, get tired from the rowing but be very impressed! With any luck you will encounter a manatee too! Ships ahoy!

Date of experience: August 2012
Thank BeachcrazyBoston_MA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 1, 2012

Witnessing bioluminescence (the emission of light by an organism, in this case, algae) was amazing. While the level of bio was not very high the night we went, it was still well worth the trip to see this phenomenon and the experience of paddling under a canopy of stars. There was a small gator near us, which was both terrifying and exhilarating in such a dark location. The jumping mullets provided constant entertainment as they stirred up the bio and looked like little fireworks shooting up from the water. We ended up with two of these little fish in our kayak, much to our amusement. Because this is a remote, wild location, listen to the instructions on the tour website--wear a long-sleeved shirt and long pants, and bring and apply more mosquito spray than you probably ever have before. There is a reason this place is called Mosquito Lagoon! Wear aqua shoes, as the launch area the night we were there was full of thick, smelly muck. We ended up throwing our shoes away because of the stench. Bring bottled water just in case you need to cleanup before getting back into your vehicle. Bring a change of clothes, just in case. There are no bathrooms at the launch site, although there are porta-johns at the large boat launch nearby. Since the website said that this tour was appropriate for beginners, I was not expecting the moderately strong current in the canal on the way back from the Lagoon and ended up falling way behind the lead guide and the more experienced paddlers. Even so, I would absolutely take this tour again and highly recommend this experience for those with an adventuresome spirit.

Date of experience: July 2012
Thank Go2Warp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 29, 2012

The bioluminescense kayak tour is a unique experience and if you are in the area during the proper season, I highly recommend going on this tour! People have described it in different ways, but to me it was like holding lots of sparklers under the water. When we got into a pitch black cove, we could make really cool light swirls with the paddles. We also saw dolphin and schools of mullet. At one point, a fish jumped into our kayak, but fortunately my daughter has no problem picking up various creatures, so she tossed it back into the water.

We went on the 8:15pm tour which was very busy and so they divided us up into 3 groups. Our group launched last, so we actually got out at about 8:45pm and returned around 10:30pm. Expect to spend close to 2 hours on the water. Just being out on the water at this time of night is an amazing experience. Also, since you are away from city lights, you can see way more stars than usual.

I agree with the reviewer who said that the early tour attracts less-experienced paddlers and more younger children, so in order to avoid playing bumper boats, we just kept our distance. The winds were relatively calm the night we went and we thought it was an easy paddle for the average person, although it would probably challenge the dedicated couch potato.

Do follow the instructions you are issued by the kayak company in terms of clothing, bug spray, time to reach the launch site and the fact that there is no bathroom other than the bushes. Don't bother bringing a camera unless you want to take photos of your family/friends in the kayaks - the bioluminescent critters are impossible to photograph - you just have to see it for yourself!

A couple of frustrated reviewers suggested that people rent their own kayaks and do this tour on their own - I DO NOT recommend this - unless you are a very experienced kayaker AND you know this particular area very well (and of course never go out alone). It is pitch dark and there are lots of small coves and tributaries, so it would be easy for an inexperienced person to become disoriented. Also, there are manatees in the area and they have been known to inadvertently knock kayakers out of their boats - so you must be able to deal with that possibility in the dark.

If you enjoy outdoor adventures, this is one not to be missed!

Date of experience: July 2012
Thank FloridaMomOfTeens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 27, 2012

A fun and truly unique experience. Leave some time to get to the launch area, because it is very remote. That said, the instructions that the outfitter sends are spot on. There are two trips per evening; one at 8:15pm and one at 10pm. We chose the 8:15pm. We were told that nearly 80% of those who sign up for the early slot are 1st time paddlers, many with small children. It is very dark once the sun sets, so if you are an experienced paddler, stay either at the front or the back of the pack, to avoid getting continually run into. There were 100 people in the early paddle (broken into 3 groups) and 35 in the late paddle. I highly recommend wearing long pants, long sleeves and bringing mosquito repellent. The bioluminescence was beautiful; we could've played in it for hours. Kudos to our super guides -- James and Amy. They were full of information about the biolum and the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, while maintaining their focus on the safety and comfort of the group. A must do.

Date of experience: July 2012
Thank agirlandaglobe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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