BLUE DISCOVERY ECOTOUR

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From manatees and mangrove forests to pirate lore and modern day mega-ships, Ft. Lauderdale’s waterways are rich with natural, historical, and cultural significance.

Dive deeper into what really makes Ft. Lauderdale so unique. Join local marine biologist and photographer, Paola Espitia, M.Sc. aboard the Water Shuttle for the Blue Discovery Tour.

During this 2.5 hour guided waterway tour on Fort Lauderdale’s New River and Intracoastal Waterway, learn about and experience the positive benefits of time spent on water! Some highlights from the tour include:

  • Scouting for wildlife to photograph
  • Exploring Whiskey Creek
  • Cruising past mega-yachts in Port Everglades
  • Learning tips for living an ocean friendly lifestyle.

TOUR ROUTE

The tour will launch from the Riverwalk at Riverfront Plaza (300 SW 1st Avenue, Fort Lauderdale FL 33301), in front of Briny’s Irish Pub, at 10 a.m., then head south and continue down the Intracoastal Waterway. The boat will travel under the 17th Street Causeway before passing the ocean access of Port Everglades. It will then cruise by the Nova Southeastern University Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography, the Port Everglades seaport and mangrove forests that make up the edges of Dr. Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson State Park in Dania Beach. As a bonus, you’ll stop at the to explore Whiskey Creek inside the Park and enjoy a cold beverage at the BG Whiskey Creek Hideout. The boat will then head back to Briny’s Irish Pub.

TICKET PRICE

The Blue Discovery Tour is $35 per person. Children 4-16 are $20 and children under 4 are free.  

TOUR SCHEDULE

Tours depart at 10 a.m. every 4th Saturday of the month. Upcoming dates: June 24th, July 22nd, August 26th

More than a boat tour, this is a new way to experience and appreciate Ft. Lauderdale’s blue backyard. Connect to your water and click here to reserve your spot with us on the Blue Discovery Tour.

Frequently Asked Questions

What time is the tour?

10am – 12:30pm.  Please arrive 15 minutes prior to departure.  

How often does the tour run?

Every 4th Saturday of the month.  Upcoming dates:  June 24th, July 22nd, August 26th

Where does the tour leave from?

In front of Briny’s Irish Pub (305 S Andrews Ave, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301).  

How much does the tour cost?

Adults = $35 + Eventbrite processing fee ($2.92)
Youth 4-16 = $20
Children under 4 = free

Where do I purchase tickets?

Pre-purchase tickets on Eventbrite:  www.eventbrite.com/e/blue-discovery-tour-tickets-32665493370
Same day tickets can be purchased with cash or credit card aboard the Water Shuttle.

What do I bring?

Camera, reusable water bottle, sunglasses, sunscreen, hat.  Additional water bottles are available on the boat at no cost.  Alcoholic beverages are allowed on-board; no glass permitted;  reusable containers are highly encouraged!

Who is the guide?

Your guide is local marine biologist and photographer, Paola Espitia.  With 10 years experience studying and photographing the local marine ecosystem, she is a wealth of water wisdom.  In 2013, she graduated from the Nova Southeastern University Oceanographic Center with a Masters of Science in Marine Biology and Coastal Zone Management.  Today she is an ocean communicator and advocate.

How many people does the Water Shuttle hold?

45

What is the tour route?

The tour launches from the Riverwalk at Riverfront Plaza (300 SW 1st Avenue, Fort Lauderdale FL 33301), in front of Briny’s Irish Pub, at 10 a.m.  We cruise south down the Intracoastal Waterway, past the Nova Southeastern University Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography, the Port Everglades seaport and the mangrove forests that make up the edges of Dr. Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson State Park in Dania Beach. On the return trip, we make a brief stop at the State Park to explore Whiskey Creek and enjoy a cold beverage at the BG Whiskey Creek Hideout. The tour ends at Briny’s Irish Pub at 12:30pm.

Is there a bathroom onboard?

There are no bathrooms on the Water Shuttle, but the boat does stop at the BG Whiskey Creek Hideout restaurant half way through the tour.

What will I see on the tour?

We often see herons, cormorants, and iguanas in the mangrove forests and there is a chance we may see manatees and dolphins in the Intercoastal.

What will I learn on the tour?

Paola will discuss the natural and maritime history of Ft. Lauderdale’s waterways, the marine ecology of south Florida, the current scientific research being conducted at the NSU Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography, the shipping industry and how it impacts our ecosystem, sea level rise and climate change.  Guests will leave with a new understanding of what they can do at home to live an ocean friendly lifestyle.

Who do I contact with questions?

Water Shuttle:  954-463-3440

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