These under the sea adventures in Florida take explorers below the ocean’s surface where a world of discovery awaits.
Funky Fish Ocean Camp
The Fort Lauderdale Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa has launched a Funky Fish Ocean Camp ocean adventure program for children ages 4-17 designed to connect youngsters with the sea. It includes sports activities like snorkeling, and skim and boogie boarding, plus crafts like tie-dying and hemp surfer jewelry, and learning about marine science. Funky Fish is offered year-round from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily, at a cost of $69 per child.
The 219-room Fort Lauderdale Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa features a prime beachfront location near Fort Lauderdale and Deerfield beaches. It offers a fitness center with ocean views and McCoy’s Oceanfront restaurant, serving seafood and American cuisine for breakfast and dinner. Guests can catch a sunrise from their room’s private balcony, treat their over-worked muscles at SiSpa, and cap off the day lounging by the outdoor pool. Rates in July start at $117 per night. For more information, call (954) 782-0100 or visit marriott.com/hotels/travel/fllpm-fort-lauderdale-marriott-pompano-beach-resort-and-spa.
Vacation Like a Pro in Palm Beach
Families can document their adventures on land and sea with the Capture the Moment package at the Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa. Using a GoPro Hero 4 Waterproof Camera (that’s theirs to keep), families can take their pick from a slew of on- and offsite activities, including snorkeling in the world’s third largest barrier reef just off the resort’s private beach, kayaking, surfing and pedal boats. Of course, they can always kick-back and relax by the pool in a cozy cabana. The Capture the Moment package, starting at $594 per night in July, includes beachfront accommodations for a minimum 2-night stay, a GoPro Hero 4 waterproof camera, and daily rental of two beach chairs and an umbrella.
The all-suite Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa also offers a beachside kids club catering to kids ages 4-12 with daily activities, including crafts, sports, and seasonal adventures from sand art and hair braiding to water balloon games, treasure digs and sea shell expeditions. The kidscClub is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily starting at $75 (including lunch). There’s also a Kids Night Out held on Fridays and Saturdays from 6 to 10 p.m., including dinner for $55; however, families can make their own fun at the grotto-style, heated Lagoon Pool with 2-story waterfall and water slide, or during live entertainment on Saturday afternoons and big-screen dive-in movies held every Friday night. Rates in July start at $255 per night. For more information, call (561) 340-1700 or visit marriott.com/hotels/travel/pbisg-palm-beach-marriott-singer-island-beach-resort-and-spa.
Scoop Some Scallops in Crystal River
Scalloping season starts on July 1 this year in Crystal River, a hidden gem on Florida’s Nature Coast, and to celebrate, the eco-friendly Plantation on Crystal River resort is offering guided and non-guided scalloping deals. The guided scalloping package starts at $675 per night for mid-week stays for two guests, and includes a 2-night stay in a Garden or Water View Deluxe Room, Patio Room or Golf Villa; a mask, snorkel and fins for the scalloping tour with one of the area’s captains; a souvenir bag with mesh scalloping bag, scallop recipes and water; and daily breakfast’ plus the chef will prepare the fresh day’s harvest (scallops or fish). Rates for the unguided package start at $380 for mid-week stays for two guests. Travel agents receive 10 percent commission on the rooms portion of the package.
If guests choose not to book the scalloping package, they can still set out into the shallow grass flats of the Gulf of Mexico to catch their own scallops and have them cooked by the chef at West 82 Bar & Grill. Plantation on Crystal River is located on 232 acres surrounded by the natural springs of Kings Bay north and features 196 guestrooms, a full-service spa, and onsite activities ranging from golf and boating to fishing. Regular room rates start at $149 on weekdays; $189 on weekends. For more information, call (800) 632-6262 or visit plantationoncrystalriver.com.