Escape the Mousetrap
Instead of: The Summit Plummet
Try : Snorkeling at Blue Spring State Park
Dragging the kids away from the resort swimming pool (not to mention the lure of another day at Disney's Blizzard Beach water park) was a tug. But once we arrived at Blue Spring State Park, the whining stopped.
Blue Spring boasts a historic house, nature trails, and a boardwalk leading from the St. John River to the head of the spring. We scurried straight to the spring, picked up snorkel gear, and ventured into the water. Each day, the 12-foot-deep spring gushes out 104 million gallons of 72-degree water that's so crystal-clear it makes Disney's pools look like, well, a theme park.
With flippered feet, frogman masks, and snorkels, we floated the spring as thousands of fish darted about. If we'd timed our trip for January or February, we might have glimpsed the West Indian manatees that come to feed and rest in the warm springs. (Who needs virtual reality and techno-wizardry when you have this magical world?)
Families that are feeling ambitious can hit the Blue Spring Backcountry Trail. The 8.8-mile round-trip winds through dense flatwoods, cypress swamps, marshes, and large oak and sweetgum hammocks before reaching an overlook on the St. John River.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication