Ginnie Springs, Florida: Freshwater Diving

3:13 PM

The crystal clear waters of Ginnie Springs had been calling my name for awhile now and I am so happy I finally got to take the plunge. I love you Ginnie :)

To truly grasp the beauty of these springs check out my short clip here.

There are actually 7 different freshwater springs at Ginnie Springs Outdoors so there is a lot to explore. These private springs and the campground are well-maintained and the staff are very friendly and helpful. This site features a full-service dive center, an awesome tubing/SUP experience down the Santa Fe River, and gear rentals.

If you're an inexperienced/beginner snorkeler I have plenty of tips and advice on my post here.



 We drove around to each spring to check out which spot looked best to swim in and, of course, Ginnie Springs looked best. Children and adults were playing in the blue-green water happily as a group of divers prepared to enter the cave. We grabbed our snorkel/freediving gear and hopped right in. Even though it was winter time, the Florida sunshine and the water itself kept us warm. Watching the scuba divers disappear into the caves below us made me wish I brought my dive gear, so definitely plan ahead or spend the money on the rentals. Be sure that you are cave certified though, they are strict about that and rightfully so.

Ginnie Springs

Ginnie Springs is the main spring at the nature park, it was also the most crowded. It seemed to have the largest swimming area but is definitely suitable for kids as it gets quite shallow. The water was so clear and warm. If you look under the surface, you can see the freshwater bubbling up from underground and lots of fish darting in and out of rock formations. 


The shallow cave in the middle of the pool drew the divers and snorkelers right in, myself included. From inside the cave, the divers would disappear down a dark tunnel in the back, but hanging out just inside the entrance, you can see a pretty view of the spring from underneath.




The deepest part of this spring is the area just in front of the cave entrance. In this photo you can see me coming out of the cave from the other side of the pool. Just above the cave, the water is shallow enough to stand in.



Devil Spring System

The next spring is the Devil Spring System which has 3 different openings leading into the caves below. Little Devil is the very first one you can see as you walk up and this one is a 4 ft wide fracture in the rock below the water. It looks like a tiny swimming pool within the spring.













Down farther, you can see Devil’s Eye and Devil’s Ear openings mixing with the waters of the Santa Fe River. Here is where you'll see the bubbles from the divers exploring the caves below. Be careful where you step, tiny hermit crabs live among the rocks.







Dogwood Spring, Twin Spring, and Deer Spring

These 3 springs are smaller and less crowded than Ginnie Springs or Devil Springs. You can clearly see the river just beyond the small pools where you can tube and canoe. We were lucky enough to have these gems to ourselves for a short time and it was so serene.














I think what I loved most about Ginnie Springs was the scenery. Underwater, you get this completely clear view of the animals and plants living there and just above the surface you can see the greenery of the forest surrounding you. This is definitely a spot that I will be visiting again in the future.



While you're out there I suggest making time to check out the nearby Devil's Den Spring. This spring bubbles up into an underground den, complete with fossils and a cave system. Check out my post on it here to see this prehistoric beauty!














Mahalo and be safe,
Alecia

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