Day trips from Cedar Key
Most people come to Cedar Key to relax and enjoy the laid-back lifestyle. If you are itching for something else to do there are a wide variety of things to do nearby. Here is a short-list of activities that can enhance your visit to Cedar Key…
Each title is a link that will take you to their site. I have also included directions from Cedar Key at the end of each title line.
Boat Tours – right here in Cedar Key!
There are a number of boat charters on the island. From charter fishing, to air boat rides, to rides up the Suwannee river, to drop off and pick up services to the various keys, they are very enjoyable trips!
Shell Mound – 15 minutes from Cedar Key – Directions
Just a short drive from Cedar Key, the Shell Mound Unit of Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge is adjacent to Cedar Keys National Wildlife Refuge. This unique feature was created by archaic period Eastern Woodland Indian cultures by discarding oyster and clam shells they used as a food source. The area was inhabited by this culture for at least 1,000 years from about 450 to 1,800 years ago.
Atsena Otie Key – 20 minute paddle from Cedar Key
Whether an experienced paddler or a newbie, paddling over to Atsena Otie Key in a kayak or canoe is a very easy and enjoyable trip. If you aren’t up to paddling over to the island, there are drop-off and pick-up boat services available too.
While on the water it is not uncommon to experience the resident Bottle Nose Dolphins up close. On more than one occasion they have been within a few feet of our kayaks. Once on the island it can be explored via groomed walking paths. This is a must-do trip!
Chiefland Golf and Country Club – 40 minutes from Cedar Key – Directions
I have played the course a few times… It a nice golf course with a pretty setting. They do not take reservations and have leagues on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s…
Manatee Springs State Park – 45 minutes from Cedar Key – Directions
The first-magnitude spring at this park produces an average of 100 million gallons of clear, cool water daily. In winter, West Indian manatees swim upriver to the warmer waters of the springs. Popular for snorkeling and scuba diving, the headwaters of the spring are also a great spot for swimming. The spring run forms a sparkling stream that meanders through hardwood wetlands to the Suwannee River. Canoe and kayaks can be rented May through September. Children enjoy the playground in the picnic area. Hiking and bicycling are available on the north end trail system. The full-facility campground is surrounded by red oak woods.
Florida Museum of Natural History – 1 hour from Cedar Key – Directions
Museum researchers investigate bird extinctions on Pacific islands, excavate shell mounds on the Southwest Florida coast, document shark attacks worldwide, monitor endangered and threatened species such as the Florida panther and the manatee, and explore the genetic codes relating families of tropical orchids. Their findings are shared through scholarly publications, university courses, public lectures, museum exhibits and K-12 education programs.
Goethe State Forest – 1 hour from Cedar Key – Directions
Goethe State Forest was named for Mr. J.T. Goethe, from whom most of the land was purchased under Florida’s Conservation and Recreation Lands (CARL) Program in 1992. The Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Florida Forest Service, was given lead management responsibility for the Goethe State Forest. Using sound forest management, the Florida Forest Service provides for multiple uses of the forest resources which includes timber management, wildlife management, outdoor recreation and ecological restoration.
Rainbow Springs State Park – 1 1/4 hours from Cedar Key – Directions
Archaeological evidence indicates that people have been using this spring for nearly 10,000 years. Rainbow Springs is Florida’s fourth largest spring and, from the 1930s through the 1970s, was the site of a popular, privately-owned attraction. The Rainbow River is popular for swimming, snorkeling, canoeing, and kayaking. Canoes and kayaks can be rented at the headsprings. A picnic area at the spring includes tables, grills, and pavilions. For large gatherings, private pavilions can be reserved.