Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Winter Park Florida Scenic Boat Tour

The very first full day of our fall vacation to Florida we wanted to do something laid back, relaxing, and local;  so we chose a scenic boat tour of three lakes in Winter Park.

The boats are eighteen passenger pontoon boats.  The tour is an hour long and cruises through three of seven lakes and two man made canals.  Each boat has a tour guide who tells you fun and fascinating stories of the history of the area and all the beautiful multi-million dollar homes on the lakes.

The canals were our favorite part of the trip (that and seeing a big white bird eat a lizard, but we didn't capture a picture of that!).   The narrow openings were so lush and full we felt we were on the Amazon river at times instead of a lake in Florida!

The homes and the stories behind these homes were amazing.  There is a lot of history of wealth in this area.  Our guide told us one of the owners of these homes was Margaret Mitchell, author of "Gone with the Wind".  He also said "Mister Rodgers" lived in one of these houses when he attended Rollins College nearby.

Winter Park is a very affluent area in Florida.  These homes are certainly a reflection of that wealth.

Rollins College (which I will show more pictures and stories of in a later post) is also located right on this lake.  That is their boat house in the picture (they have an Olympic rowing team) and a spire of one of their buildings in the distance.

This house had an interesting story.  I hope I re-tell it correctly for I am going only by memory.     Our guide told us that a man had to move to Winter Park for his work but his wife would not move with him because she loved her home back east so much she couldn't bear to leave it.  So to get his wife to come to Winter Park, Florida, the husband built an identical house on this lake.  I thought, either that was one really spoiled wife, or, the husband was deeply and madly in love with her.  I prefer to think the latter.

We had the pleasure of going through two canals on this boat trip.  See the pretty stone bridge in the background of the picture?

Most of the homes had boat houses on the canals.  I can't even imagine maneuvering a boat through this narrow canal and into that tiny boat house!

Whenever I see homes this big, I always wonder "What do they do with all that space?"

We found it so interesting that these trees were growing right in the center of the lake!

And finally, I leave you with a picture of my two beautiful children Jordan and Ashley.  Jason had to work this day so that is why he is not pictured.  It was also a chilly morning, only 66 degrees, and these two are so use to hot and sultry temperatures that they were bundled up trying to stay warm!  The boat tour did provide nice fleece blankets to cover up with while on the boat, as it does get cold when the boat goes fast!

The cost for the tour was only $12.00 for adults and $6.00 for children under 12.  You can learn more about the boat tour HERE.

Have a great day!  Linking Up with these Fabulous Blogs HERE and Travel Tuesday!


  1. This looks like so much fun. The canals do look great.

    Amy Ann
    Straight A Style

  2. That tour looks incredible, but I have some serious house envy while looking at those pics
    Dresses & Denim

  3. Lucky you! We did that a few years ago, and so enjoyed it. Our tour guide had oldies playing, and we all had a blast. Have fun!!!

  4. Oh that looks lovely. We've been to Florida a few times but not done that

  5. What a delightful place, Amy! The more I see of Florida, the more I wish to visit it...
    Many thanks for taking part in the Travel Tuesday meme. Happy New Year and lots more travels!

  6. Looks like a great tour. We are always looking for things like this to do and it's close enough we could easily accomplish that. Thanks! Glad you had fun in Florida and the weather cooperated.
    Your kids are adorable.

  7. What wonderful houses--especially, the story of the duplicate home but all I can think of is how much work it is to keep it clean and the yards looking good :)


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