- John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park and the adjacent Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary covers approximately 178 nautical square miles of coral reefs, seagrass beds and mangrove swamps. The park extends 3 miles into the Atlantic Ocean and is approximately 25 miles in length. These areas were established to protect and preserve a portion of the only living coral reef in the continental United States.
The upland area of the park offers two short hikes: a nature trail located in a tropical hammock and a mangrove swamp incised by a boardwalk.
A large visitor center and marina complex offer sights of a 30,000-gallon saltwater fish tank, an audio-visual program, exhibits, regularly scheduled nature talks, ranger-guided canoe trips, snorkeling tours, diving lessons, glassbottom boat tours, and the newest addition - a sailing catamaran. It is the ultimate in a smooth and relaxed ride with a passenger capacity of only 24 making it ideal for those who are looking for a quieter, more relaxed reef adventure.
Directions: Take Exit 2 from the Florida Turnpike onto Campbell Drive. Follow signs to S.W. 328th Street (North Canal Drive). Continue to the end of the road.
- © NileGuide2013
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