Bio luminescent Jellyfish Kayaking in Merit Island, Florida
You heard me right! An hour away from Orlando, you can literally kayak with bio luminescent jellyfish! (Incredible I know!) Our friend Elizabeth stumbled on a tour that takes you out onto the water during the sunset to catch a glimpse of the jellyfish. The tour was a little pricey but it was well worth the price! Our friend frank, my husband and I were hooked on the idea! We were to meet our kayaking tour guide at 7:30 pm, so we decided to make an evening out of it!
We left Orlando around 2:00 pm straight to Titusville, roughly an hour drive. Our first stop, ICE CREAM (of course). We headed to this Mom & Pop Shop downtown Titusville called Space Coast Ice Cream . A double scoop of mint chocolate chip ice cream cone cost me about $5 and let me tell you it changed my life! Best ice cream I have in a long time!
What’s a visit to Titusville without a pit stop on the beach? A pristine State Park in Titusville called. $10 gets you into the front gate to the park and parking is free. We stopped at the first beach we found and we were not disappointed. During January, the beaches are covered in blue and purple colored jellyfish (watch where you are stepping!).
Nearing 6:00 pm we stopped for dinner at a local fish and chips joint. The dinner was just short of amazing. Powdered sugar covered fried dough waited for us at our table. We dined on the freshest grouper you could ever dream of and the best part yet, the prices were great! Is there a better way to spend an evening in Titusville than putting our feet into the ocean and dinning on fresh grouper? I think not.
As it started to get dark we headed out towards our meeting location for the tour, for a few miles we traveled in the dark on a narrow road. Finally pulling off into another dirt road, we started to see the dim lights of the kayaking team setting up. We made sure to have the wavier forms filled out before we registered, this was a huge help getting checked in! The tour guides strapped us into life jackets, gave us matching glow sticks and paddles then grouped us by the shore. The guide then gave a short how-to kayak and safety in the dark. We then lined up, picked out our kayaks and the guides pushed out into the dark.
Floating in the dark, we were unable to tell where the sky met the land and stars reflected in the water. It was an incredible “rain drop in the ocean” feeling. We floated here a bit until the guide and the rest of the group was ready to move on.
We paddled through mangroves in the dark, hearing the call of the nocturnal birds in the distance. In a clearing, the tour guide had us stop as he passed out small hand nets. He explained to us that the jellies are safe to handle and will light up if touched in the net. Like children at a petting zoo, we were excited! I quickly ran our net through the water and scooped up the jellies; they lit up like small fireworks in my hand.
My husband took over paddling for a bit, as I ran my hands through the water. With each touch of my fingertips the jellyfish and plankton lit up. Even the water pushing on the stern of our kayak was dragging this beautiful light blue light through the water. Not many moments in your life do you truly feel small in the world (Well maybe standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon –see my article on this!), but I truly felt small floating along the water looking up at the Milky Way. What a life changing kayaking trip, a must see!
Please let me know if you have any comments or questions for me about this trip!! I want to hear about your adventures too!