Florida’s Mount Dora is surrounded by so much water that it’s as easy to reach by boat tour as it is by road.
For anybody who knows Florida well, waterways and lakes are a common thing. So when a small city like Mount Dora is located in a region known as Lake County, you can certainly imagine that people who dislike the water would be pretty put off. For those who love the rambling canals and patchwork of lakes however, there is a range of excellent boat tours in Mount Dora to make exploring the unique wilderness nearby a comfortable and safe experience. There’s even a freshwater lighthouse here.
Mount Dora Shoreline Tour
Rusty Anchor has practically copyrighted boat tours in Mount Dora, so complete is their range of watery excursions. Among the best value is their shoreline tour, which sees guests ride a pontoon boat, keeping close to land to provide first-rate glimpses of central Florida’s abundant bird, mammal and reptile life. Look out for various species of heron, egret, and raptor, as well as alligators, raccoons and otters in and around the waterways. Between two and four shoreline tours depart every day. From $24 per person.
Mount Dora Sunset Cruise
For a balanced mix of waterborne experiences, take the hour-long sunset boat tour from Mount Dora. Not only is much of the wildlife more active as the daylight fades, but the colors of the sky and water change minute by minute at sunset, making for a wonderfully photogenic trip. Your crew will also be on hand to point out sites of interest as you pass by, filling the blanks with local historical knowledge for a deeper appreciation of the area. From $27 per person.
Dora Canal Cruise from Mount Dora
Dora Canal in nearby Tavares is a spectacular ride, where the dense vegetation encroaches on either side of the water, reflecting on the glassy surface and practically dripping in mosses and lichens. During the two-hour tour you’ll be able to gain a deeper understanding of how humans and nature have interacted in these parts, from the digging of new waterways to building waterside oyster shacks and homes amid the trees. As ever, wildlife is the central star of the tour, so keep a keen eye on the shore for turtles and ‘gators. From $37 per person.