Ridin’ the Waves in Florida
Florida boasts of having over 8,000 miles of coastline as well as 4,500 miles of inland waterways. With this much water for cruising, it is no wonder that boating is such a popular sport in the state. Many boaters often find themselves cruising over Florida waters and its waterways for the sheer beauty of it. Many types of boats have graced the waters of Florida ranging from mega-yachts to wooden skiffs. In Florida, owning a boat is as normal as owning a car.
The wonders of boating in Florida are further enhanced with its waterways, passages where boats can pass through for maximum boating experience. There are many waterways maintained by the Florida Inland Navigation District, the two most common and popular are the Intracoastal Waterway or ICW and the Okeechobee Waterway.
The ICW is also known as “the ditch” and is a natural but dredged channel. This channel extends 500 miles down the east coast of Florida to the tip of the Keys. This is a very popular boating route because it runs through rivers, creeks as well-dredged canals, giving boaters an extremely great variety in boating experience.
The Okeechobee Waterway, on the other hand, is composed of 135 miles of boating route. Extremely popular during the summer, this waterway runs along the St. Lucie Canal from Stuart, across the lake, then on to Sanibel Island via the Caloosahatchee River.
Best Places to Anchor Out
Just as cars park in a parking lot, boats do so as well but in ports. Boats aren’t just anchored anywhere. There are many great places to anchor in Miami including across Baker’s Haulover Inlet in front of Florida International University; in front of Watson Island; the anchorage in Boca Chica Harbor; and the bayside by Sand’s Cut. Palm Beach County also has a great place to anchor such as Peanut Island across Lake Worth Inlet.
Boating Rules and Regulations
It is recommended that before purchasing a boat or even before boating in Florida, especially for those new in the area, to get acquainted with the state’s boating rules and regulations for a safe and legal boating experience.