Canoeing and Kayaking
Sea kayaking continues to gain popularity in the Keys. You can paddle for a few hours or the whole day, on your own or with a guide. Some outfitters even offer overnight trips. The Florida Keys Overseas Paddling Trail, part of a statewide system, runs from Key Largo to Key West. You can paddle the entire distance, 110 miles on the Atlantic side, which takes 9 to 10 days. The trail also runs the chain's length on the bay side, which is a longer route.
Coral Reef Park Co.. At John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, this operator has a fleet of canoes and kayaks for gliding around the 2½-mile mangrove trail or along the coast. Powerboat rentals are also available. MM 102.5 OS, 102601 Overseas Hwy., Key Largo, Florida, 33037. 305/451–6300; www.pennekamppark.com. Rentals from $12 per hr.
Florida Bay Outfitters. Rent canoes, sea kayaks, or Hobie Eclipses (the newest craze) from this company, which sets up self-guided trips on the Florida Keys Paddling Trail, helps with trip planning, and matches equipment to your skill level. It also runs myriad guided tours around Key Largo. Take a full-moon paddle or a one- to seven-day kayak tour to the Everglades, Lignumvitae Key, or Indian Key. MM 104 BS, 104050 Overseas Hwy., Key Largo, Florida, 33037. 305/451–3018; www.paddlefloridakeys.com. From $15.