Summer is almost here and it’s time to start thinking about summer vacation. Forget beach days, the new craze for Florida families is packing up the car and heading to a natural spring. Most likely, this springs will be less crowded and it’s a chance to get close to some Florida wildlife. Here are 5 springs that are definitely worth the drive from Tampa. If you don’t want to make the trip, here are some springs that are 2 hours away from Tampa (or less).
Many of these state parks are cheaper to visit than a day of parking would cost you on Clearwater beach and are usually less populated, especially if you head there on a weekday. Cool down in the 72-degree water year round, if you’re lucky enough you may even spot some manatees. It’s worth noting that you should try to get to the springs as early as possible. On weekends and peak days they will close down due to capacity.
Travel & Leisure helped us build this list with the most pristine springs in Florida. We condensed the list and added a few of our own favorites. Most of the springs on this list are at least a 2 hour drive from Tampa.