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Airboat Adventures - Orlando / Florida Guide

Florida Guide > Days Out

Florida is famous for it’s thrill rides at Disney, Universal, Sea World and Busch Gardens, but there are other ways to get your pulse racing, whilst getting a taste for the real Florida away from the theme parks and the madding crowds.

We’re talking about airboat rides!

On a weeks’ holiday in Naples we booked ourselves on a trip to the Everglades which included a blast on one of Florida’s’ famous airboats.

Most people have seen these on TV and they look like fun. Well they are! A whole lot of fun.

What is an airboat? Well at some stage, some idiot must have decided to mate a tea tray with an aircraft engine, and the end result came out as the airboat. When it comes to power to weight ratios, there can’t be much to compare.

And the noise when they get moving, well…… It’s a good job you get earplugs.

Don’t let this put you off, we took our six month old on with us, and he loved it.

It’s hard to describe the feeling of riding an airboat. What you see on TV doesn’t come close to the real thing.

First of all, no other machine moves like an airboat. It’s so smooth over water and reeds that you can be having the most serene experience out in the middle of nowhere, then the next minute you’re turning. But you don’t just turn in an airboat.

You’re heading in one direction at speed, when the driver will spin the boat to face back where you were coming from – trouble is you’re still going in the same direction – but now backwards!

Then with an almighty roar of the engine, the propeller starts to push against the momentum and you’re away again. This is how it goes, swaying your way over one of the most beautiful areas of wilderness you’ll ever see.

It’s not all noise and power. A lot of the time you’re just coasting gracefully along.

There’s little but swamp and sky when it comes to scenery, but there’s plenty of wildlife, including the toothy kind, and some how getting so far away from human contact is a breath of fresh air. Makes you realize how big Florida really is.

We had an absolute blast that day and saw some really beautiful sights. We got some great photos too and slowed down a bit from the pace of Orlando.
This is a great way to get an alternative look at Florida, and you don’t have to go all the way to the Everglades. Out on central Highway 192, there’s Boggy Creek Airboat Rides. Why not add them to your to do list whilst you’re out there!

Tips – hats don’t mix too well with propeller blades, and the mosquitoes out there can be ferocious, so splash out on some good repellent. Other than that, it’s plain sailing.

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Page added on: 19 April 2005
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