With gas prices so high, we realize that going on a summer vacation could cost an arm and a leg, but we don't want you to miss out on summer fun, so we came up with "one tank trips."
This series focuses on local vacation spots that will cost a family of four less than $100, gas included.
We take you to Wakulla Springs State Park. This is total relaxation, and guess what? It's found close to home.
"Our most biggest attraction is our boat tours. We have a riverboat tour. It's about a 40-minute trip. On the river you get to see wildlife like you wouldn't see anywhere else in the country."
The glass bottom boat gives you an amazing glimpse into Wakulla Springs’ amazing underworld. When the water is clear, you'll see an abundance of fish and even a few fossilized mastodon bones.
Meet Don Gavin. He's worked at Wakulla Springs for nearly 30 years. The fish know this tour guide so well, they come around when he calls.
"I've done hundreds and thousands of tours. Every one's a little different."
Another attraction is the water temperature.
"The water stays a constant 70 degrees year round. No matter if you're here in the middle of January or July, the water temperature is the same."
Making the swimming area the perfect spot for a summer cool down, but wait! There are alligators in there!
Cook says it's a safe place to swim and lifeguards are always on the lookout.
"Alligators have a natural fear of people as long as that fear is maintained and people don't feed them they won't want to come around people," says Cook.
Let's talk some dollars and cents. With this trip being within 100 miles of your home, with 10 gallons of gas at $2.00 a gallon = $20. The entrance fee into Wakulla Springs Park is $4 per carload up to eight people. Boat tours are $6 per adult and $4 per child. The total amount for two adults and two children? Less than $100.
What a deal!
Park hours are 8 a.m. until sundown, 365 days a year. You can bring your own food, or eat at the lodge. There is so much more I can tell you about Wakulla Springs, but I don't want to give it all away, you have to explore for yourself.