Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Winter Park Scenic Boat Tours

Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour: Celebrity Homes

Winter Park’s Biggest Attraction of Scenic Boat Tours

The scenic boat tour begins at their headquarters in Winter Park at the end of Morse Boulevard on Lake Osceola.

The tour will have you relaxing in one of six 18-passenger pontoon boats. Your tour guide will begin by showing you some famous structures in Winter Park history along the lake shore..

You will leave the boat house on Lake Osceola and head south into Lake Virginia through a beautiful narrow canal canopied by ancient oaks, banana, cypress, and palm trees, ferns and just about anything else that grows in this part of Florida.

The northern shore of Lake Virginia is home to the picturesque campus of Rollins College.

After touring Lake Virginia, the boat heads back north through the same canal and into Lake Osceola for a leisurely cruise along the shoreline and a glimpse into the many historic mansions and exquisite estates.

Another beautiful winding canal takes you north into Lake Maitland where you will see Kraft Azalea Gardens and the breathtaking views of opulent private homes.

Many of the grand homes are on the Isle of Sicily, a man made peninsula that juts into the center of the lake.

The tour guides are locals who know the area well and make the one hour cruise interesting.

Along with the beautiful scenery, many times nature cooperates in the tour by showing you large cranes hunting for fish or a lazy alligator swimming along the shoreline.

How Do I Book A Ride On The Winter Park Boat Tour

Tours leave the dock every hour on top of the hour starting at 10 am. The last ride is at 4 pm. They do not take reservations unless you have a group of 12 or more, in which case youd call ahead to make arrangements at 407-644-4056.

It is a first come, first serve basis. So, if you know you want to make a certain time slot, be sure to arrive nice and early to put your name down.

Tours are NOT rain or shine.

If there is lightning within 10 miles, the trip is canceled and you will be bumped to the next available boat, or will have to return another day. If youre from Florida you understand that lightning is NO JOKE and they do this out of the safety of riders and their staff.

Location Of Winter Park Scenic Boat Tours

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How Long Is The Winter Park Boat Tour And Where Does It Go

The hour-long boat ride is narrated by locals that really make the tour. They know who has lived where, the history of the area, and have some funny jokes up their sleeves.

They cruise three of the seven Winter Park chain of lakes and squeeze through a couple IG worthy canals. Its always a nail-biter when a kayaker or SUP boarder shares the canals, but the friendly guides always make sure to make room for their water-loving allies.

What Can You Expect To See On The Ride

Winter Park

Florida is known for its swaying palms and sandy beaches, but theres more to marvel at while cruising the shorelines of Winter Park. While youll see your fair share of palms and lakeshore beaches, you also get a hefty dose of towering cypress trees, grand oaks, lush ferns, and a variety of pretty sub-tropical flowers.

Its fun to imagine what it must be like to own one of the many opulent mansions and estates dotting the shores. Lusting over their expansive gardens and impressive architecture is a fan favorite on this tour.

Critter-wise you can expect to see anhingas, great blue herons, egrets, osprey, red-shouldered hawks, barred owls, ibis, other water-loving birds, and the occasional gator. Alligators are not big fans of the amount of action on the lake, so the chance of seeing one is slim.

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Come Sail Away: Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour

All photos by Kelsey Walters

Orlando and the surrounding areas have no shortage of things for tourists and locals to explore. In fact, it can be pretty overwhelming when deciding what park to visit, where to dine and what to do in between to maximize your vacation, or staycation. Given its close proximity, Orlando loves to flock to our beaches, and in turn, Volusians spend just as much time in the central Florida area at major attractions.

One of the most stressful parts about being on vacation is, well being on vacation. Planning and the hustle of getting from place to place usually falls on one persons shoulders and the stress of it all can be very taxing. The exhaustion of visiting theme parks and more can make you second-guess your entire visit. There are, however, plenty of things you can do to actually relax and take a break during your time away!

Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour is just 10 minutes outside of downtown Orlando, but it feels like a world away. This one-hour lake and canal cruise is the ideal way to relax, where the only thing you have to do is sit back and enjoy the scenery. Whether youre looking for a break from your trip, or a quick afternoon getaway before dinner downtown, this tour is lauded by Floridians as a must do in central Florida. Plus, its a great, cost-conscious, activity to have on-hand when you have visitors in town.

When Is The Best Time To Take The Winter Park Boat Tour

As you might have guessed, winter is the busiest time of year for the Scenic Winter Park Boat Tour. Especially the time right before Christmas.

The cooler months are popular among the snowbirds and people wanting to enjoy the lower temps, so be sure to show up early to claim your spots.

The least busy day of the week is typically Monday unless its a holiday.

The busiest slots tend to be any time after lunch, so the early bird gets the worm!

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Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour & Park Avenue

The Scenic Boat tour offers an hour long guided cruise through three of the seven pristine lakes and the narrow, man-made canals on the gorgeous Winter Park chain.

On any given tour, participants may observe large cranes swooping waterside to snag a large fish or a lazy alligator languishing on a nearby bank. An occasional water skier or racing shell full of crew members from the areas private liberal arts college, Rollins, are also enjoyable sideshows for tour goers.

Every tour, however, guarantees plenty of swaying palms, towering cypress trees, lush ferns and a variety of flourishing sub-tropical flowers. Breathtaking views of opulent private homes and exquisite estates sprawling along the shores are also a key feature of the scenic cruise.

The dock, is less than 5 minutes from Park Avenue, Central Florida´s popular, upscale shopping district. We will enjoy time there after the boat tour, dining at one of their many delicious restaurants and shopping. Also within walking distance is The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art houses the worlds most comprehensive collection of works by Louis Comfort Tiffany. Admission is only $6 and $5 for seniors age 60 and older.

Itinerary:

Scenic Winter Park Boat Tour

Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour

Yesterday, my husband and I took the scenic Winter Park boat tour. We decided to do this for the morning of our 26th anniversary. Winter Park is a great area to go for restaurants, so we figured we would get lunch after the boat tour, and that’s what we did.

The boat tour takes you on the Lake Osceola, which is located in the middle of Winter Park. It takes you through the beautiful canals, which have a canopy of trees over them. Those are the best part of the tour, but they only last a few minutes here and there. The rest of the boat tour is taking you out on the lake, where you get a look at some of the expensive homes that line the shore.

The captain of the boat tells you about some of the homes, including their values, what famous people owned/own them, or detail about their size, etc. He also pointed out numerous birds that we saw. It was interesting to hear about the homes and area. You also get to see the beautiful expansive campus of Rollins College. Some of the famous people who have had homes around the lake that you get a look at include Fred Rogers.

When we were finished with the boat tour, we went over and had a great lunch at the Winter Park Biscuit Company! Below are pictures and a video from our scenic boat tour. To get more info, .

– Jacqueline

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Where Exactly Is The Winter Park Boat Tour

The dock where you pay and check in is conveniently located just steps from the bustling Park Avenue of Downtown Winter Park. East Morse Road leads right up to Lake Osceola where the boats await.

There is 3-hour street parking available however, if you show up later in the day, parking tends to fill up so you may have to find a spot anywhere in the Park Avenue area and walk over.

Old World Winter Park With Boat Tour Includes:

  • Round-trip transportation from your hotel
  • Parking and admission ticket for a one hour boat tour and guided cruise of Winter Park
  • Choose a walking tour: Peacocks, Presidents & Puzzle: The Winter Park Walking TourorHello Neighbor The Mister Rogers Walking Tour
  • Shopping/Dining time on your own on Park Avenue
  • Assortment of cold drinks
  • This tour is not wheelchair accessible

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Take A Scenic Boat Trip In The Heart Of Winter Park

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. â Central Florida has plenty of historic spots and attractions of but of the longest running ones you can find right in Winter Park. Spectrum News hops aboard the Scenic Winter Park Boat Tour to celebrate their milestone 85th year in business in this week’s Florida on a Tankful.

With the turn of a key, a journey across the glistening waters of Lake Osceola begins. A journey that might be a first for you, but one that Captain Tom here has taken many times.

Tom is a seasoned veteran at Scenic Winter Park Boat Tours. He’s been giving them multiple times a week for the last 12 years, which means he knows quite a lot about the history and how to put a smile on your face, something he attributes to his previous career.

Before picking up this job in his retirement he owned operated and managed restaurants and bars in and around Orlando and Winter Park, something he says lends itself well to this job as a tour boat driver.

âI was always in hospitality and this is pretty hospitable, isn’t it?â

While Tom started driving boats for the scenic boat tour 12 years ago, his love of boating and the Central Florida area started long before that.

âI have lived in the same place here in Winter Park for the past I think 48 years and I’m fortunate enough to have a boat dock right on Lake Virginia.â

How Much Does The Winter Park Boat Tour Cost

Winter Park

There are fun boutique shops and eateries close to the docks where you can grab a bite before or after your tour. If youre shopping in the upscale district before your ride, be sure to save $16 for your boat fare. Children 2-11 years old are $8, and kids under 2 are free.

That said, there is no shade and you have to be seated throughout the entire one-hour ride. Also, kids under 5 must wear a life jacket the entire time so use your best judgment on whether your kid can handle those conditions.

They used to be cash-only, but now accept major credit cards and even Apple Pay.

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Canal Boat Ride In Florida

What are the most well-known canals in Florida?

Beyond the scenic boat ride in Florida that takes you through the Winter Park area, there are other well-known canals in the state that are also worth exploring. While canals in Florida serve an important purposedrainage, flood, control, irrigationthey also create beautiful waterways to boat through. A few of the most well-know canals include Tamiami Canal, West Palm Beach Canal, and St. Lucie Canal. Also, if you want to explore other waterways in Florida in a different type of vessel, check out this amazing glass-bottomed boat tour.

What underrated places in Florida should I visit?

There are plenty of things to do in Winter Park that are worth checking out when you visit. But what about other underrated places in Florida? The Sunshine State is brimming with beauty and attractions that you wouldnt normally see on a tourist-must list. Falling Waters State Park in Chipley, for instance, is one of the only waterfalls in the state. Meanwhile, Florida Cavern State Park in Marianna will give you a glimpse of what its like underneath the state. Check out this list of the 13 most underrated places in Florida to explore.

Can I take a canopy walk in Florida?

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Additional Details You Should Know Before You Go

The fine folks at the Scenic Winter Park Boat Tour are always looking out for their guests and put safety first. Their mantra watch your step followed by no standing echoes throughout the day. All boats have life jackets and guides are well versed in how to operate their pontoons.

If youre on the hunt for a different way to spend some time with your friends or family, this is the ticket. Its an affordable way to explore the natural side of Winter Park and get to know her from a fresh perspective. And just remember, watch your head as you pass under those fern-dressed branches!

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Easy Inexpensive And Exciting Winter Parks Scenic Boat Tour In A Natural Attraction

Winter Park, Florida Adventuresome for the first time visitors seeking flora and fauna or savvy Orlando travelers seeking an off-the-beaten-path vacation experience wont be disappointed when they discover the Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour.

Located on Lake Osceola in the quiet suburb less than 10 minutes from downtown Orlando, the boat tour offers hour-long, guided cruises through three of the seven lakes and two, narrow manmade cannals on the tranquil Winter Park chain.

On any given tour, participants may observe large cranes swooping waterside to snag a large fish or a lazy alligator languishing on a nearby bank. An occasional water skier or racing shell full of crew members from the areas private liberal arts college, Rollins, are also enjoyable sideshows for tour goers.

Every tour, however, guarantees plenty of swaying palms, towering cypress trees, lush ferns and a variety of flourishing sub-tropical flowers. Breathtaking views of opulent private homes and exquisite estates sprawling along the shores are also a key feature of the scenic cruise.

The dock, less than 5 minutes from Park Avenue, Central Florida´s popular, upscale shopping district, is conveniently located on the East end of Morse Boulevard on Lake Osceola

The Scenic Boat Tour offers a fleet of six 18 passenger pontoon boats. Admission is $16.00 for adults and $8.00 for children Taxes Incl. under 2 are free. Cash or Check Only! Operating hours are 10am to 4pm daily except Christmas.

Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour

Scenic Boat Tour – Winter Park, Florida!

312 East Morse BoulevardTel: 407-644-4056

By Mike Miller Updated July 30, 2022

The Winter Park Scenic Boat Tour is a one-hour tour you will enjoy whether it’s your first time or hundredth time.

The attraction began its operation in 1938. It’s first trip was led by Captain Tom and dubbed the “Venice of America” tour.

Today it is one of Florida’s most interesting off-the-beaten-path experiences.

What makes it unique is the route the tour boats take through Lakes Osceola, Virginia, and Maitland.

Although its location in Winter Park is only ten minutes north of downtown Orlando in Central Florida, and a quick 5 minute walk from busy Park Avenue, the tour route feels like a completely different world.

It’s one of the best ways to enjoy a taste of both worlds.

You will see tropical trees such as large palm and beautiful cypress trees, lush ferns, tropical flowers and many tropical birds along the route.

You will also see some of the most spectacular mansions in the state along the route.

Some of these mansions have been owned by movie stars or other famous people and the guide will point them out.

The Winter Park chain of lakes includes seven lakes, with the larger five being connected to each other by narrow beautiful canals.

These canals were built by lumber interests in the late 19th century to float logs harvested from the surrounding forests to the sawmill locations.

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What Should You Wear And Bring With You

There are quite a few bridges and low limbs to duck under throughout the tour, so the boats never put up a canopy. That means lots of sun. You should remember to:

  • Wear a long sleeve shirt or sunscreen
  • Put on sunscreen on your face and neck
  • Wear a hat
  • Wear breathable clothes and comfy shoes sandals are fine
  • Dress warm in the cooler months

You are welcome to bring a cooler along as long as its small. Please note that they do not allow alcohol on board. Water, other drinks, and hats are sold at the ticket window.

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