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Boat speeding over the water

Your Trusted Guide to Boating in Jacksonville Beach

Spring and summer are here! These are winning seasons for Northeast Florida residents, with tons of water sports to keep you warm, show off that gym bod and work on that tan.

Boating is a popular pastime for Floridians. If you don’t own a boat, then you most likely know someone who does. It’s the best way to chill out when the weather is pleasant, cruising the numerous waterways and marshlands, then spending the day parked on a sandy beach or sandbar.

If you are moving to Jacksonville Beach, but don’t have much boating experience, never fear. Here are the best tips so you can prepare for your first time out on the water.

Pack for the day

You won’t be out for a couple of hours. Plan on dedicating your day to cruising, soaking up the sun, BBQ'ing and splashing about. You never know where a day on the boat will take you! Come prepared for relaxation AND adventure! You may stumble upon a rope swing on a waterway or go tubing. Perhaps you want to fish or play bocce ball. Wherever you go, pack plenty of supplies.

The necessities

It’s all fun when you’re out on the water, but the Florida elements can be unforgiving. Pack plenty of water and sunscreen. Keep shaded as much as possible and bring a hat and shirt. As well, sometimes in the evening it can get chilly as the sun sets and the boat is speeding over the waves. Bring a large towel or light sweatshirt to get cozy after a long day in the water.

Be the perfect guest

If you’re heading out on the water on a friend's boat, don’t forget to offer gas money. Bring along snacks, especially if a BBQ is planned on a beach or sand bar.

Safety first

Sure, boats are a blast, but remember that it can also be dangerous. Always act responsible and never take any chances. Make sure to have a life jacket and first aid kit. Does the boat have all required safety gear on board? There are licenses and laws that boaters are required to follow. If your boat gets pulled over by a cop (yes, in FL there are boat cops), a day of fun can take a sad turn if a fine is issued or worse, you have to go back to the docks.

Courtney Lambert

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