Vero Beach, Florida

Kayak Round Island

Originally added by Lucas Boland

This easy-to-access spot is beautiful, a perfect combination of nature, wildlife, and exercise. Enjoy one of the well-kept secrets of the Florida coast! 

Florida receives plenty of attention from tourists, but rarely is it for its outdoor recreation. However, the intercoastal waterways that run up and down much of the state are fantastic places to grab a kayak and hit the water on a sunny afternoon (they get a lot of those). Round Island Beach Park is one of these places - accessible and offering plenty of fun. It's less than 2 hours from Tampa and 15 minutes from the middle of Very Beach. If you're in south-central Florida, it's a worthy excursion for the day.

To get there from Vero Beach, or anywhere north, you simply have to get onto Highway A1A at any convenient point, and follow it down until you see the sign for Round Island on the right side of the road - easy as that. You'll pull off there and enter into the park and follow a loop into the parking lot. The park is free to access, and allows for boat usage or walking on a fair amount of trails through the woods. When you reach the far side of the loop you'll find a beach area for launching canoes and kayaks, use whichever of these you prefer. Once you park the car, hop in your boat and paddle to any place that looks interesting. There are a series of islands that you can explore, weaving in and out of them and finding little beaches to land the boat. Feel free to step off and explore some of them.

The great part about kayaking here is that the water is almost always very calm, as it's surrounded by landmasses and consists of a network of smaller waterways. The water is shallow (only a couple feet in many spots), and so you won't have too hard of a time if you happen to tip over. This area also has a ton of wildlife - fish jumping out of the water, herons and pelicans, sting rays, and my personal favorite: manatees. It's a great place to spend a sunrise or sunset, as the obstructions on the horizons are low, and take the time to slowly paddle around, taking in the details and activity of all the animals. Although the area might seem prime for a swim, it's not permitted, due to the amount of wildlife activity, and unfortunate uncleanliness of the intercoastal waters.

When your arms are tired, paddle back to the launch area, always being sure to work your way eastward. Pull up the car to the beach, load up, and enjoy the rest of your day! Cheers! 

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Tags

Canoeing
Chillin
Kayaking
Bathrooms
Beach
Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
Forest
Groups
Picnic Area
River
Scenic
Wildlife

Reviews

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about 1 year ago

Epitome of Florida

Great place to see manatee, bring some charcoal for a grill-out after

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.

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