Posts Tagged ‘fishing’

Black Dolphin Inn New Smyrna Beach Florida 2013

Monday, August 5th, 2013

BlackDolphinIf you love the beach, the water, the heat, the sand, the beach bars, the seafood and stellar hospitality you’ll want to visit the Black Dolphin Inn.   I recently stayed at the Black Dolphin Inn in New Smyrna Beach, Florida.   What a fabulous Inn and perfect location on Riverside Drive overlooking the Indian River waterway.  Every aspect of the Black Dolphin Inn speaks luxury and southern grace.  This newly renovated Inn is eye catching in its Spanish-Colonial style architecture with fresh and tastefully designed modern and contemporary interior, speaking elegance in every way.  Brett and Shelia, along with their son, Taylor are gracious hosts who insure you a delightful stay. You can tell the entire family has a solid background in hospitality and they run the inn with passion and warmth exceeding the expectations of their guests.  Third generation hoteliers and identical twin Brothers Brett & Scott Smith, fell in love with this former riverfront estate.  Overlooking the Indian River on Florida’s east central Atlantic coast, Black Dolphin gets its name from the dolphins that playfully swim by its dock. The 14 guest rooms are skillfully appointed with amazing vintage finds, fine art, eclectic accents, and modern amenities.  Gorgeous views, many with French doors opening to a private balcony that seem like tree houses peeking through gnarled oaks to the Indian River.  The Black Dolphin Inn was recently selected as one of the “Top Ten B & B’s” awarded in 2013 by  The Black Dolphin Inn is not just a place to stay, it is a reason to go to New Smyrna Beach. The breakfast is beautifully displayed with locally sourced sustainable foods, which is expanded to include additional dishes such as steel-mill grits and southern home-fried potatoes. In nearby New Smyrna, walking distance from the inn, funky seaside restaurants are abundant as well as beach-side galleries, surf shops, and sprawling beaches. Overnight docking is available at the Black Dolphin for guests with boats. Even without a boat, fishing opportunities are plentiful at nearby Canaveral National Seashore Park.   While standing outside I was greeted by the bottle nose dolphins from the dock.  The Black Dolphin provides a retreat for the mind, body, and soul.

The Dog Days of Summer

Monday, July 29th, 2013

Bright EyesSome of the best memories I have took place during the Dogs Days of Summer, while playfully running or spraying the hose with all the kids in the neighborhood because it was so hot.  Catching lightning bugs in mason jars to light up the bedroom later that night, or so we thought.  Who can’t remember playing all, you all, in come free, the slogan of the kids running back to base at a huge oak tree without being tagged.  So what do we adults do during the dog days of summer?  Drink a cold beer or cold wine while sitting in the shade on a lake, beach or pool somewhere, or read a book in a hammock under a beautiful oak shade tree.  We even liked to float down a shaded river in a canoe or kayak, jet skiing on a beautiful lake, riding in a speed boat or water skiing behind a fast boat so the water will spray and cool you off.  Water sports are so much fun and a great way to spend time outdoors during the dog days of summer.  Florida Bed and Breakfast Inns have plenty of Inns around the state that are located on the beach, river or lake and many more have beautiful pools for cooling you off.  The Innkeepers would gladly serve a glass of Iced Tea or Cool Lemonade to help keep hydrated during the heat.

Where did the phrase Dog Days of Summer come from?  A casual survey will usually find that many people believe the phrase is in reference to the conspicuous laziness of domesticated dogs during the hottest days of the summer. When speaking of “Dog Days” there seems to be a connotation of lying or “dogging” around, or being “dog tired” on hot and humid days.  Why not let someone pamper you with a get-a-way during July and August to escape the heat.  During late July, Sirius is in conjunction with the sun, and the ancients believed that its heat added to the heat of the sun, creating a stretch of hot and sultry weather. They named this period of time, from 20 days before the conjunction to 20 days after, “dog days” after the dog star.

All of the Florida Bed and Breakfast Inn lodgings welcome you to spend a pleasant respite from the heat.

St. Vincent National Wildlife Refuge Open House March 22, 2013

Friday, February 22nd, 2013

For you nature lovers, many national wildlife refuges around the country will host open houses and public celebrations in honor of the 109th birthday of the National Wildlife Refuge System and will offer great opportunities for wildlife viewing.  In 1903, President Teddy Roosevelt established the first national wildlife refuge on Florida’s Pelican Island to protect wild birds from bounty hunters. Today, the Refuge System’s 556 national wildlife refuges and 38 wetland management districts make up the nation’s premier network of public lands, providing vital habitat for thousands of animal and plant species.

St. Vincent National Wildlife Refuge, in Franklin County, Florida, is an undeveloped barrier island just offshore from the mouth of the Apalachicola River, in the Gulf of Mexico. The refuge is managed to preserve its highly varied plant and animal communities. Ten separate habitat types have been identified: tidal marsh; freshwater lakes and streams; dunes dominated by live oak and mixed hardwood understory; scrub oaks; relatively pure stands of cabbage palm; and four different slash pine communities, each with its own unique understory species. St. Vincent is an important stop-off point in the Gulf of Mexico region for neo-tropical migratory birds. The island is a haven for endangered and threatened species, including bald eagles, sea turtles, indigo snakes, and gopher tortoises. Wood storks use the refuge during their migration. In addition, the refuge serves as a breeding area for endangered red wolves.

On Friday, March 22, 2013 the St. Vincent Island Supporters Group will welcome visitors to the island to explore and learn more about this beautiful island wildlife refuge.  There are a wide variety of events for all participants.  Among them are exhibits, hikes, nature trails, music, historical narratives, photo opportunities and art exhibits.

Free transportation to and from the island will be provided.  There is no charge for the event

Date and Time : March 22, 2013 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM (ET)
Location : St. Vincent Island
Contact email :

National wildlife refuges are national treasures that play a critical role in preserving America’s rich wildlife legacy,” says U.S Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe. “Without refuges’ important conservation work, the country would lose many species of plants and animals that help clean our air, filter our water, pollinate our crops and boost our understanding of our place in the natural world.”

Turtle Beach Inn Bed and Breakfast located in Port St. Joe with Gulf view cottages, where you can experience the charm and natural beauty of Florida’s Forgotten Coast is the perfect place to stay while enjoying St. Vincent Island.  Canoeing, kayaking, boating, fishing, swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving are all available in the area.  St. Vincent Island, a federal wildlife preserve, is just a short paddle or boat ride from the inn. Cape San Blas Bed and Breakfast in Cape San Blas is also a great place to stay while visiting the St. Vincent Wildlife Refuge. The Inn is situated on the east side of St. Joseph Peninsula. Overlooking picturesque St. Joseph Bay and across the street from the turquoise waters of the Gulf of Mexico, the Inn is situated 25 miles west of Apalachicola and 14 miles from Port St. Joe. Graced by the natural beauty of this yet-unspoiled part of Florida’s Gulf coast

Central East Florida Nature Tours

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

Some folks travel to Central East Florida for Disney World. Some come here for Daytona Beach and the Kennedy Space Center. Still others come here for the nature. This blog is for the outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers.

Florida kayaking

Imagine yourself on a paddling adventures in Central East Florida.

Kayak tours are a fantastic way to explore both coastal waters and inland waters. Try a romantic sunset paddle, or a moonlight cook-out and paddle. Consider an afternoon of kayak sailing; it’s a great way to cover more distance and pick up a little speed. Kayak the Jack Island Preserve area of the Indian River Lagoon or the quiet Sebastian river. Explore Blue Cypress Lake, home to many wonderful birds, or paddle around the Barrier Islands, home to dolphins and manatee. Any time in a kayak will be fun. See Tropical Kayak Tours for more possibilities.

Stand up Paddle boarding is a fantastic way to feel fit and have fun. It doesn’t matter if you’re experienced or a novice–if you fall in, the water is warm. See what it’s like to walk on water in the company of dolphins and manatee. It could be one of those life-changing experiences. Please see Super Eco Adventures for specifics.

Honest John’s Fish Camp is a local treasure. The legacy of an honest man who loved to fish lives on here, run by his grandchildren. This is a good place to rent a fishing boat and learn about the local waters and fish. You’ll also see wonderful wildlife.

Come explore the quiet side of Florida. Get out in nature. Keep it real by lodging in a Melbourne Beach, Florida Bed and Breakfast.



A Gem on the Forgotten Coast

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011
Panama City Beach

Panama City Beach

The coast of Northwest Florida is known as the Forgotten Coast, for the developments that have mushroomed throughout much of the southeast largely passed by this place. There are a few exceptions of course: Panama City Beach has a long strip of amusement parks, arcades, bars, and eateries, and it is a hot spot for many vacationers. Yet once travelers leave the heart of Panama City Beach, they find mile after mile of sandy beaches, lots of opportunities for outdoor recreation, and few crowds.

Panama City Beach offers a pleasant diversion for guests of Northwest Florida Bed and Breakfasts, and it is certainly worth a look. Yet folks seeking unspoiled beaches, quaint towns, and good surfing spots should also plan to spend some time in Mexico Beach. (more…)

Flagler Beach

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

Flagler Beach is a quiet town on the Palm Coast of Northeast Florida, 30 minutes north of Daytona Beach and 45 minutes south of St. Augustine. There are just under 20 miles of pristine beaches here, and few crowds. People visit the area and stay in Flagler Beach bed and breakfasts because of the beautiful natural surroundings, strong arts and culture, and outdoor recreation. Surfing is particularly popular here, for some of the biggest waves in Florida hit this stretch of the Palm Coast.

Swim with the dolphins at Flagler Beach.

Flagler Beach may be best known for its 800′ long pier – a paradise for fishing. No matter the weather, intrepid anglers may be seen dangling their lines off the pier. If you like to fish, consider booking a room in a Flagler Beach bed and breakfast; you’ll want a big, healthy breakfast in you when you battle a big one.

If you can tear yourself away from the Pier, browse the many shops and restaurants along the waterfront, and consider a trip to the Flagler Beach Historical Museum. It provides a thorough history of the region- from the Stone Age to the present. See prehistoric bones, dehydrated astronaut food and much, much more. (more…)

Heavenly High Springs

Thursday, June 17th, 2010

Cool off tubing near High Springs in Northeast Florida.

High Springs is in Northeast Florida, midway between Gainesville and Lake City. Time spent in High Springs bed and breakfasts would do anyone good; the town is peaceful, the land around it stunningly beautiful, and the people friendly.

Visit River Rise Preserve State Park, just out of town. The Santa Fe River re-emerges here in a quiet, circular pool after a brief hiatus underground. This is an ideal place to escape summer heat – the trees are huge and the shade is deep. Anglers, spend a day fishing the Santa Fe River here. Hikers, choose from over 20 miles of trails. Birdwatchers, bring your binoculars.

A bit farther from town is Ichetucknee Springs State Park, where the Ichetucknee River passes through wetlands and shaded hammocks before joining the Santa Fe River. At this time of year, you’ll want to stop outside the park and rent tubes and snorkeling equipment, for tubing is extremely popular and fun. Come on – live a little! (more…)

Matlacha Pass Aquatic Preserve

Saturday, March 27th, 2010
Matlacha Pass Aquatic Preserve in Southwest Florida

Matlacha Pass Aquatic Preserve in Southwest Florida

Between Bokeelia Island, Florida and the mainland is a slender channel known as the Matlacha Pass Aquatic Preserve. Mangrove islands and seagrass flats line the shore of the mainland. Wildlife abounds: oysters, seabirds, fish.

The Matlacha Pass Aquatic Preserve is an ideal place to kayak, fish, or go birding while you are staying at a Cape Coral Florida bed and breakfast. Lush mangrove forests shade you as you explore meandering water trails. You’ll feel as if you could wait forever for that fish to bite, or for a closer look at a bird.

Experience the unique geography of SW Florida.

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