The Stand Up Paddle Guide to Florida by Paddle Logger

Florida, US often referred to as the “Sunshine State,” boasts a plethora of paddling destinations that cater to adventurers of all levels. From the mangrove-lined waterways of the Everglades to the tranquil springs of Central Florida, the state offers a diverse array of landscapes for kayaking, canoeing, and stand up paddle boarding. Paddlers can navigate through winding rivers, pristine coastal estuaries, and shimmering lakes, encountering a rich variety of wildlife along the way. Whether seeking tranquil nature escapes or exhilarating coastal journeys, Florida’s paddling destinations provide an abundance of opportunities to explore the state’s unique ecosystems and soak in its natural beauty. Here is a list of recommended places you need to check out paddling in Florida brought to you by Paddle Logger!

A mnagrove forest in

A mangrove forest in Key Largo


Jupiter, Florida, known for its stunning beaches and outdoor activities, is a lively coastal town on the southeastern coast of the United States. Home to a bustling waterfront district with charming shops and restaurants, Jupiter offers a perfect blend of relaxation and adventure for visitors and residents alike. Jupiter is also known as a paddlers paradise with lots of variety of environments for every single type of paddler. If you’re looking for an escape from the city you can find peace in quiet serene places like Riverbend Park as you paddle through the beautiful palm trees along the winding Loxahatchee River. If you’re looking to be a part of all of the action you can join in on all of the fun by connecting with the famous local surf shop known as Blueline Surf & Paddle Co. Jeramie Vaine, a true community leader, can get you set up to participate in the local race scene known as the Tuesday Night Race League. Races happen every Tuesday night with two launch points either at Guanabanas or Burt Reynolds Park.

Tracking Blueline Surf Series Winter Race #1 / January 2024

Paddling in Riverbend Park, Jupiter Florida / January 2024

Fort Lauderdale

Continue driving (or paddling) further down the south coast of Florida you’ll find the City of Fort Lauderdale, another unique paddling destination in the sunshine state. Fort Lauderdale’s culture is a vibrant mix of art, music, and outdoor activities that reflect the city’s coastal charm and rich history. The city boasts numerous art galleries, museums, and cultural events that showcase its diverse community. With an emphasis on creativity and inclusivity, Fort Lauderdale’s culture thrives on innovation and collaboration. In regards to Fort Lauderdale as a paddling destination there is an unlimited amount of intercoastal waterways to be explored. Whether it’s at night under the lights with a local community group known as the 954 Paddle Crew or through the Stranahan River out into the ocean, there are many ways to enjoy Fort Lauderdale on the water.

Training with the 954 Paddle Training Crew in the inter coastal waterways of Fort Lauderdale / January 2024


Will Smith sang about this place and we’d be shocked if you’ve never heard of Miami! Approximately one hour south of Fort Lauderdale (depending on traffic) is a picturesque seaside city known for its beautiful sandy beaches, marinas, diving sites, and vibrant waterfront attractions. Miami beach, Fishers Island, Virginia Key and Key Biscayne are just a few places not to be missed! With its warm weather year-round, Miami offers a wide range of water sports activities such as diving, kitesurfing, surfing, and of course stand up paddling making it the ultimate water recreationists destination!

Paddling out of Key Biscayne / February 2024

The Florida Keys

The last location we recommend exploring on Florida’s east coast can be found at the south most end of the state, known as the Florida Keys. The Florida Keys are known as an archipelago or a string of tropical islands that stretch about 120 miles off of the southern tip of the state between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. Paddling in the Florida Keys offers a tropical paradise for water enthusiasts. With crystal-clear turquoise waters, vibrant coral reefs, and abundant marine life, kayakers and stand up paddle boarders can explore breathtaking scenery. From tranquil mangrove mazes to open ocean adventures, the Florida Keys provide an unforgettable paddling experience in a stunning island setting. It’s impossible for us to list all of the keys to visit here, but the few places that we can recommend are near Key Largo and Islamorada. You can also find a list of possible routes to paddle recommended by ‘Paddle the Keys’.

Paddling in the Tarpon Basin in Key Largo / March 2024

Tampa Bay

Moving to the west side of the state, Tampa Bay stands out as a unique paddling destination due to its diverse waterways and scenic landscapes that cater to all levels of paddlers. From calm bays and meandering rivers to mangrove tunnels and coastal estuaries, the region offers a variety of settings for kayaking, canoeing, and paddleboarding. Paddlers can explore the intricate ecosystem of Tampa Bay, encountering wildlife such as manatees, dolphins, and various bird species along the way. With a mix of urban and natural environments, paddlers can experience the beauty of the city skyline from the water while also immersing themselves in the tranquility of Florida’s coastal habitats. Tampa Bay’s paddling opportunities provide a unique and immersive way to connect with nature and appreciate the region’s scenic beauty. There are multiple locations to launch in the Hillsborough Bay, Old Tampa Bay, Saint Joseph Sound, Clearwater, St. Petersburgh and more! We recommend visiting Paddle Tampa Bay to learn more about where you can park, and launch your paddling craft.

Image courtesy of Urban Kai / Tampa Magazine / Gabriel Burgos


Sarasota, situated on Florida’s gulf coast just south of Tampa, has a humid subtropical environment, making this location quite a hot paddling destination (no pun intended)! Home to Nathan Benderson park where many iconic SUP events have taken place such as last year’s ICF SUP world cup, and Last Paddler Standing, this location is also where the next ICF World SUP Championships will be held later this year. Outside of this flat water destination, paddlers can also explore many of the Keys that are located along the coastline such as Lido Key, Bird Key, Siesta Key, and Longboat Key just to name a few. Much like Tampa Bay, paddlers can find a diverse range of environments to paddle in, whether that be beaches, coves, bays, and creeks that make Sarasota a must-paddle destination!

Nathan Benderson Park / Tracking two laps at Last Paddler Standing / December 2023

We hope that you check out some of these unique paddling destinations if you get the chance to visit the Sunshine State! Florida truly provides a perfect playground for paddlers seeking adventure, relaxation, and a deeper connection with the state’s remarkable aquatic landscapes. From a mix of urban and natural settings to explore, we hope that you are able to enjoy Florida and all of its natural beauty from the water!

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About the Author

Maddi Leblanc

Maddi Leblanc is a Niagara born, Canada-based stand up paddling athlete for Team Canada, SUP instructor, and lake surfer. Maddi is also the events and community co-ordinator at Surf the Greats. She has been paddle boarding for over ten years, competing in SUP for seven years, and surfing the Great Lakes for seven years. She is also a masters alumni from Brock University in Recreation & Leisure Studies. Find her on Instagram.

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