Scallop Steinhatchee

By: Carter Harris + Save to a List

Swim and Scallop in Steinhatchee

What is it? 

The beautifully clear Gulf of Mexico, with its warm water, flowing sea grasses, and abundance of wildlife is an attractive place to snorkel and swim. But, what if you could snorkel with a purpose? Welcome to the world of scalloping. Scalloping, (the harvesting of shellfish known as scallops) involves swimming on top of the water, and looking down on the world below for the small little shells with gleaming eyes, diving down, and adding them to your bag. This activity can provide hours of fun for all ages. All you need is a boat and anywhere from an inch to six feet of water to get started. Since the age of seven, I have been scalloping out of Steinhatchee, and still enjoy it immensely. 

When and Where to do it? 

While I have only scalloped out of Steinhatchee, almost anywhere on the bend of the panhandle has scallops. If you do go out of Steinhatchee, the folks at Sea Hag Marina can outfit you completely, have a few guide recommendations, and have boats for rent. The season varies year to year, but typically it runs from late June/early July, all the way to September, depending on the number of scallops. 

Where to Stay?

Steinhatchee landings is the prime place to stay, however it is very packed during peak seasons. The community features a pool, river access, and tennis courts to keep you entertained while off the water. 

What to Bring? 

1. Sunscreen (being face down on the top of the water creates a prime opportunity to get burned)

2. Snorkel, Mask, and fins 

3. Food for your stay (Steinhatchee has limited resources) 

4. Florida Saltwater fishing license 

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

Do you love the outdoors?

Yep, us too. That's why we send you the best local adventures, stories, and expert advice, right to your inbox.