Biscayne National Park

The best way to explore Biscayne National Park – 95% of which is under water – is by boat. Start at the Dante Fascell Visitor Center, about an hour north of Miami, where you can book all types of tours to explore the largest marine sanctuary in the United States and the 3rd largest offshore coral reef in the world.

Even better if you get into the water: Kayaking in Adams Key, Stand Up Paddleboarding on Jones Lagoon, snorkeling above Florida’s protected coral reefs, and snorkeling around sunken ships on the Maritime Heritage Trail are all top choices. Stingrays, turtles, sharks, eels, and a variety of outrageously colored fish are amongst the creatures that await you.

If you’d rather stick to land, consider making your way to one of the park’s islands, which are part of the northernmost Florida Keys. The most popular are Boca Chita Key with its iconic 65-foot lighthouse and Elliott Key, the largest of Biscayne’s islands, with camping, hiking, and other recreational activities.