John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park
4.5
8:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Monday
8:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Wednesday
8:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Thursday
8:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Friday
8:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Saturday
8:00 AM - 8:30 PM
Sunday
8:00 AM - 8:30 PM
About
Check out the living coral reefs around Molasses Reef at the country’s first undersea park. If you're a strong swimmer, join a snorkeling or scuba diving tour to get close to the corals and marine life. Otherwise, enjoy the underwater scenery from a glass-bottom boat. The park also has designated spots for camping, fishing, swimming and barbecuing—fun activities to round out a great vacation. The adventurous traveler might also enjoy exploring the mangrove swamps on a guided tour and hiking the Wild Tamarind Trail. For thinner crowds, visit on weekday mornings. Reservations are recommended, especially during the holidays. – Tripadvisor
Duration: More than 3 hours
Meets animal welfare guidelines
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  • Quest38071852055
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great snorkeling
    Great snorkeling trip! We saw beautiful corals, a stingray searching for food, large barracuda, rainbow parrot fish, and many others. The captain and first mate were great! Provided plenty of pointers and kept us safe getting back to the dock before a storm.
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 22 June 2023
  • Nomad20446456884
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Excellent customer service!
    We could have missed an excellent tour b/c we never did read that we should have been there to sign the waivers plenty of time ln advance before the boat's departure time. But Kim at customer service did her utmost to call us and let us know that we had to hurry up. We didn't miss the wonderful experience of swimming and looking at those awesome coral reefs. TY, Kim!
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 24 June 2023
  • Eric W
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    First time kayaking
    Very easy process, everyone was friendly and helpful. The trails were great, you could see straight to the bottom. We could see fish swimming under and around us while paddling. The kids will never forget it.
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 24 June 2023
  • Ella D
    3 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing time!
    We had such a great time! Even though we weren’t able to see the Christ of the Sea statue due to the weather, the snorkeling was amazing! We saw so many cool fish and got to swim up close to the coral. This was my favorite part of our recent trip to the Florida Keys!
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 25 June 2023
  • Krwilson09
    9 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Glass bottom boat tour!
    Booked the glass bottom boat tour since I didn’t want to snorkel by myself (husband was at a conference). Water was beautiful, crew was great - friendly and entertaining. We saw spotted eagle stingrays and a sea turtle (and of course lots of fish and coral). Great way to experience the reef if you don’t want to snorkel. If prone to motion sickness take something before you get on board - it helps a lot. Also if you’re doing the 9:15 tour like I did you really don’t have to be there at 8:00 unless you just want to wander and look at all the lizards for an hour. For the later tours arriving early would be necessary as there was a line to get into the park gate backed up to the main road as I was leaving.
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written 26 June 2023
  • Cindy E
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Highlight of our trip
    We loved our visit! We spent quite a bit of time at the park. Lounging, snorkeling, Kayaking, picnicking and viewing the Aquarium. We took a snorkeling tour (at the recommendation of Aquarium staff) and really enjoyed the trip. The boat staff was great and was the highlight of the entire vacation. kayaking through the mangroves was awesome too. We even spotted a couple of manatees. If you visit on a weekend, be aware that the line to get into the park can be LONG. If you have a tour booked , you may be late. Luckily, we were getting dropped off so we could make a run for the boat and we just made our 8:30 boarding. Just go earlier thank you think. It's worth it. There is a food truck inside with your basic grill food. It's sustenance but may want to bring your pic nic.
    Visited June 2023
    Written 26 June 2023
  • Maytrix007
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great snorkel experience!
    We saw the state park signs as we drove by and thought it would be a good place to snorkel. Looking at the website it wasn't clear how good the snorkeling was without doing a tour so we booked a tour not really knowing what to expect. The tour ended up being perfect and was a great time! We saw some Turtles as we took the boat out to the site and saw dolphin's on the return. The snorkeling was great, we saw a variety of different fish and had a great time! We didn't take advantage of the other areas of the park but would plan on it if we do a trip in the future.
    Visited June 2023
    Written 28 June 2023
  • Andrea W
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Fantastic Snorkeling Trip
    The park was a beautiful place to visit. We found a picnic shelter to have a shaded lunch. The visitor center had a small aquarium and a junior ranger program for my daughter. The beach was nice and encouraged guests to keep it clean. The snorkeling staff was great and made instructions clear. When my daughter’s snorkeling mask wasn’t working they lent her one to make sure she had a great experience. The visibility was great and we saw lots of fish on the reef after a 30 min boat ride .
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 29 June 2023
  • Suzy G
    1 contribution
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Kayaking in Mangroves
    Rented kayaks to explore the mangrove area. It was awesome- staff was friendly and we had a blast! Directions as to where to go were clear and a laminated map was also provided. Will be back for a longer rental next time.
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written 29 June 2023
  • FishingwithScotto
    Hervey Bay, Australia208 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Like snorkeling without getting wet
    We did the glass bottom boat tour to experience the reef while visiting Islamorada. The John Pennekamp State park appears to be well managed and is naturally lovely. The crew were entertaining and had a witty humour. It takes approx 25 minutes to get out to the reef where other dive boats were also. The weather and water clarity was great for visit and you could clearly see the bottom in 20ft of water. The reef isn’t as colourful as the great barrier reef back home - but it is well worth visiting. The glass bottom design of the catamaran is well designed and it really is as good as snorkelling with out getting wet. Thanks Scott & Katrina
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written 30 June 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles14,468 reviews
Excellent
10,549
Very good
2,618
Average
876
Poor
275
Terrible
151

Jocelyn W
9 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
Snorkeling and exploring the shipwreck at Cannon Beach was so cool! I hope that next time we visit we’ll finally get to go out on the snorkeling boat. Weather keeps cancelling us. Park is very nice though.
Written 21 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Janice R
4 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Family
The actual experience was great and affordable. Guides were helpful. Some confusion about boarding almost boarded wrong boat.
Written 20 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

LaDonna A
24 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Couples
Very good Snorkeling and a great crew to help us prepare & experience the beautiful corals & many aquatic life. Highly recommend this company to take out out.
Written 19 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Rachel F
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
Captain Ed and First Mate Lucas were awesome. It was a great adventure out to the reef. We saw so many beautiful fish, barracuda, a ray. Ed and Lucas helped my 16 year old daughter, who was a first time snorkeler, get the courage to go in. She had a blast. Thank you both so much for a great trip!
Written 19 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Manuel B
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Couples
Captain Ed and Lucas were very thorough and caring with all passengers. The waters were very rough due to weather and winds, yet they still made the experience phenomenal. The reefs are beautiful and very safe to snorkel. The care given to maintain the reefs intact is emphasized, rightly so. Very good experience.
Written 19 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kristin R
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
We had great experiences. The kayaks and snorkeling were really fun! The staff were friendly and helpful. There were food areas for okay and rest.
Written 18 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Stay05060413564
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Friends
The ride out to the site was smooth. The site was beautiful. We saw some amazing corals, a Goliath grouper, parrot fish etc. The first mate Art was extremely knowledgeable and friendly. He really made my son's 16th birthday amazing. We would 100% go on this tour again! FYI it's Florida in summer in a state park, the mosquitos are in full force make sure you have bug spray!!
Written 18 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

mehl y
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
Loved seeing the vibrant ocean life with friendly and knowledgeable staff. They were informative and funny.

Grateful that they are working hard to preserve and recover the reefs.
Written 17 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Karina R
Pembroke Pines, FL1 contribution
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
First time going to this State Park. We rented some kayaking and had a great time. They were comfortable and each "seat" included back support, making the rowing much easier. The beach is small and full of rocks, so I would recommend using water shoes. It was a nice experience overall.
Written 16 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Leigh Ann C
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2024 • Family
Staff gave us all the info we needed to have a terrific time in a beautiful and unique setting. So much fun for our family of young adults and middle aged folks with a mix of some to no experience.
Written 16 June 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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JOHN PENNEKAMP CORAL REEF STATE PARK: All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

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