Today I drove up with my daughter and my mom to go to Weeki Wachee Springs in Spring Hill, Florida. Weeki Wachee is located about an hour or so north of Tampa. If you’ve never heard about it, it’s an amazing, super unique place. There was SO much to do at this road side attraction! You can go on a riverboat cruise, swim in their crystal clear spring water, slide down the water-slides or relax on the lazy river. But, the most exciting part of Weeki Wachee is the mermaids!
What is most unique about Weeki Wachee is that they train their swimmers to hold their breath for long periods of time underwater and to take breaths of air from a tube under the water. Their swimmers are dolled up and wear pretty mermaid costumes and perform an amazing underwater show that is complete with singing, dancing and music. It’s so hard to describe, so you just have to see it to believe it. My six year old daughter was mesmerized by seeing these girls dressed up to look like real mermaids. It’s as close to the real thing as you’re going to get!
The girls who work as mermaids in the park are trained for 3-6 months to master becoming an expert mermaid. They spend time learning breathing techniques and preparing themselves to be underwater for up to half an hour! What’s not typically known is that the spring water is a bit on the chilly side of 74-76 degrees naturally. The mermaid’s body temperatures are lowered as they stay in the water for the show. When they make their return to land they warm up in a sauna to raise up their body temperatures.
While the mermaid show was amazing, there were so many great things about the park! The riverboat tour was a bit on the short side, but was informative and offered great information about the area. We saw turtles, native Florida birds (herons and egrets), fish, and so much more! We learned about “monkey island” and how the island used to be used for trading with the Native Americans of the region. There was also a wildlife show immediately before the mermaid show that showed a snake and discussed native species.
The spring itself was beautiful and the park has kept the natural, historical beauty of the area. There are plenty of opportunities for swimming and going down the “lazy” river in a tube. The park is fun and entertaining and you can spend all day there. The only downside is that the water is, as mentioned before, very cold! Be prepared for the cold water, because it’s chilly no matter the season. Also, get to the park early, as soon as they open, if possible. The park is very busy and they do have a limit on how many people can be admitted inside the park and into the mermaid shows. Other than that, this was a fun, super affordable trip for our family!
If you’re interested in Weeki Wachee, check out their official site here: https://weekiwachee.com/ . We are not associated with Weeki Wachee in any way, but did have a great time at their park!
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