1. Jules' Undersea Lodge, Key Largo
Your student group can enjoy the only under water hotel on the planet for an unbelievable senior trip! While you’re here, you may as well get your Open Water certification for diving, or scuba your way 21 feet below the surface of Emerald Lagoon for lunch! Educational programs for students are also available and introduce individuals to neutral buoyancy, underwater behavior and the relationship between astronauts and aquanauts. Explore the history of marine habitats and discover the power of water as a regenerating source for every day necessities.
2. Miami Seaquarium Sea Trek Reef Encounter
Listed as a must-see and do as part of any trip to Florida, the Sea Trek Encounter varies in experience from kissing a dolphin to walking through a 300,000 gallon tropical reef in a diving suit and helmet. If your students have ever wished to swim with a seal, feed a manatee or work side by side with animal trainers, this is the attraction they deserve! On land, you will find all sorts of snacks like pizza, chicken fingers, sandwiches and cotton candy for starters, as well as gift shops where they can pick out souvenirs, stuffed animals, Crocs shoes, home décor, apparel and more!
3. John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, Key Largo
70 nautical square miles of the first U.S. underwater park belongs to those adventurous enough to seek it. Glass bottom boat tours take your group to shallow reefs teeming with aquatic life, while alternate tours include scuba diving or snorkeling. Back at the Visitor Center, guests will enjoy a 30,000 gallon saltwater aquarium along with educational videos. A 2.5 mile stretch of mangroves invites canoers and kayakers to further explore everything the park has to offer.
4. Weeki Wachee Mermaid Show, Spring Hill
This is exactly what it sounds like: special performances by underwater actors and actresses like The Little Mermaid and musical numbers! The mer-people must undergo rigorous training and a final audition to participate in the mesmerizing ballet. The spring in which they perform has a bottom so deep that no one has ever seen it, and the subterranean caverns continue to produce strong currents that not just anyone can look majestic and beautiful in!
5. Florida Keys Shipwreck Trail
A marine sanctuary, student divers will find a long line of historic demise along the coral reefs and sea life beneath the theme parks and beaches of Florida. Under water guides are available to discuss the story behind each vessel. Some sites require being anchored to submerged buoys in order to fight the deep currents where many of the wrecks have found their final resting places. See the oldest shipwreck on the trail, the San Pedro, where treasure is said to still exist.