Everglades Kayak Tours

Explore and truly experience the REAL Everglades!

5-Day Complete Everglades Loop Tour, Feb 2-6 2016  “We took the 5-day sea kayak tour with the great Dave K! The things that made this trip the best were not just the sweet blue crab claws cracked on chickee with an IPA beer, or the laid back efficiency of our storytelling leader, or the alligators that we saw in the mangroves, or the really sweet new friends we made while learning the names of all the Everglade birds; but there was this immense sense of a different kind of wilderness, a marine wilderness with Gulf of Mexico sand and all that the ocean brings.”  Sophie Littee <sophielittee@yahoo.com>

5-Day Complete Everglades Loop Tour, Feb26-Mar02 2017  “I did not get a chance to thank you and say goodbye on the last day of our 5-day trip. Thank you very much for a well organized and interesting trip to Pavilion Key and the Everglades waterways. I enjoyed all of the campsites and the food was very good. The 10,000 Islands area is certainly is a different world from where we’ve boated before, and I am glad I was able to get a bit of a feel for the area on our trip.”  Barbara Galloway <beegall@skybeam.com>


5-Day Complete Everglades Loop Tour, Dec31-Jan04 2017 “Finally getting around to posting some photos from my New Year’s kayak trip in Everglades National Park. This was my third trip back since falling in love with the park 6 years ago. Did the trip with Dave K - a consummate professional guide who is fiercely protective of this unique paradise. I can’t recommend him enough.”  Maria Montag <mariamontag@earthlink.net>

3-Day 10,000 Islands Base Camp Tour, March 29-31 2015  "During the night while camping, I woke up to the gentle lapping of the gulf water on the sand. I was cold and had to pee. The facilities I knew consisted of a few unknown sparse shrubbery which was not the greatest thought at o-dark-thirty in the morning. I don’t want to go out there, out there is total black darkness, out there are possibly biting varmints. Sigh, but I know I have to go out there, I have to pee. Trying not to wake my sleeping granddaughter, I wiggled out of my warm dry sleeping bag, unzipped the now dew coated zipper of the tent and crawled out on all fours into an unexpected incredibly vast universe. The air was heavy and salty sweet. There above and seemingly all around me was a stunningly different world from when I entered the tent for the night. I saw spread across the sky a smear of cream that I realized was the Milky Way and (never before seen by me) a panoramic twinkling universe above. I was stunned, I couldn’t move, didn’t want to move, just wanted to stand there forever but I still had to pee. I did the deed very quickly. Afterwards I sat on the damp sand just looking and appreciating this wonderful gift from God. All through mankind’s existence, this same awed and humble feeling must have been the response. How else can one explain such a marvelous gift?” Ellie Huck <ellie@allhuck.com>

TESTIMONIALS

Don’t take our word that we offer the best overnight kayak tours in the Everglades, take the word of our customers! Please feel free to contact them with any questions, they’ll be happy to let you know what our tours are really like.

About Us

WHAT'S NEXT?

Does this sound like something for you, but you still have more questions? Feel free to contact Dave K directly and he’ll be happy to personally answer all your questions. You may email evergladesdave@gmail.com, call (386) 295-1850, or submit a Contact Us form below. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Do you already have your travel dates set? Just check the Tour Calendar below to see what's available. Remember, this calendar shows only the currently scheduled trips and many other dates are possible. Simply specify the dates that work best for you when you make the reservation.

When you’re ready to book, simply complete and submit the online Tour Reservation Form below. After acceptance, your reservation will be confirmed by paying a $200 per person deposit. This can be securely paid online through PayPal, verbally over the phone or by check through the mail. Upon receipt of the completed reservation form and deposit, we will send you a reservation confirmation email, payment receipt, detailed Overnight Tour Information sheet, a full packing list, and Liability Waiver. Please do not make additional travel arrangements until you receive the confirmed reservation from us.

We look forward to having you join us for the trip of a lifetime! Why wait? Many trips fill fast, reserve your adventure today!

5­-Day Complete Everglades Loop Tour, March 13­-17 2011 ­ "I want you to know that our five day Everglades trip with you was very special in so many ways. You are perfectly suited to hosting a trip like that with your wildlife knowledge and history of the area. As well, your personality lends itself to draw out your guest's best characteristics ­not to down grade your cooking talents, that was superb also. We would never have taken on that kind of trip alone, but learned a lot from our experience with you to give us confidence to try some short excursions in NH or RI. It was an adventure for sure and you are right, the weather could not have been better!" Maris Wofsy <litehouse@hotmail.com>

8-Day Wilderness Waterway Expedition, March 11-18 2014"Clint and I had a great time. This was a fantastic way to see the Everglades. I loved spotting the orchid, seeing an alligator, watching the sun set over the Gulf of Mexico, observing the pelicans fish while the tide went down, kayaking across Ponce De Leon Bay, exploring the Wilderness Waterway, and of course eating Dave's good cooking. Thanks for a great trip. I'll friend you on Facebook so you can see the pics I took. Thanks!” Chris Chisler <warrenchisler@msn.com>


3­-Day 10,000 Islands Base Camp Tour, Dec 27-29 2013 ­ "Thanks Dave for a great trip! My husband and I are used to fending for ourselves on a kayak trip. What a luxury to be treated so elegantly! I would recommend this trip to anyone, even if they are not a seasoned camper or paddler. It would be a very low-stress, high-enjoyment way to learn the sport." Joan Wotkowicz <jw-info@sebringdesign.com>


3­-Day 10,000 Islands Base Camp Tour, Dec 23­-25 2012 ­ "We had a FANTASTIC time. Dave was an excellent guide, so kind, so professional and so knowledgeable. Dave really seemed to know the needs of our family and adjusted the route each day to meet our needs. He cooked excellent meals, cared for us dearly and was so thoughtful to provide gifts for us to open on Christmas morning! All in all it was a great trip, a true memory maker. We would greatly recommend him for any family that wants to explore the coastal Everglades without worrying about getting lost in the numerous islands that all look alike! Dave gave us a great taste for the 10,000 Islands in 3 days."  Jeff Shuman <jshucarp@gmail.com>

Safety: Client safety is the top priority for Dave K, your guide, and Florida Outdoor Adventures! Contrary to popular belief, gators and snakes are actually very timid retiles that are fearful of kayaks and people. We have never had a client or guide even threatened by any wildlife. Even if you've never kayaked before, paddling with us is very safe and great for beginners. Also, kayaking with us is much safer than going out on your own in a leaky rental kayak. It's not unusual for first time visitors to the Everglades to get lost in this place where everything looks the same! Florida Outdoor Adventures carries the required Everglades National Park Commercial Use Authorization permit and guide/ outfitter business general liability insurance. It also has prepared and filed an up­-to-date Emergency Action Plan.

As a wilderness first responder, Dave K is trained to respond to medical emergencies in the backcountry. And, as a sea kayak instructor, he is qualified not only to perform, but to teach open water sea kayak safety and rescue skills. Your guide will thoroughly discuss all safety procedures before we head out. Everyone is required to wear the provided life vest at all times on the water. Throughout the tour, your guide will carry kayak safety equipment such as tow system, paddle float, bilge pump and first aid. Even the rare event of a capsize is not dangerous because the Everglades waters are warm, flat and shallow. Your guide carries a navigation system including compass, detailed charts, along with vast experience paddling the area. They will also carry communications equipment for use if an emergency evacuation is required. You will be paddling in comfortable and stable high​ quality kayaks and using the best equipment. We never go out if dangerous weather conditions threaten.

Extensive Local Experience: Unlike the numerous day trip operators, we concentrate on fully outfitted and guided overnight sea kayak camping tours in the backcountry of Everglades National Park. Our experience allows us to offer you the best itineraries. We will guide you to see all of the various habitats in the Everglades (mangrove estuary, tidal rivers, 10,000 Islands, isolated keys, Wilderness Waterway, Gulf of Mexico, hidden mangrove tunnels, white sand beaches) and we will camp on all of the different types of campsites (chickees, shell mounds, beaches). We won't waste your valuable vacation time and dollars showing you the same old heavily visited sites. We are also a local outfitter. When you contact us with questions you will be assisted by the guide who will take you on the tour. Your questions will be answered by someone who has been there and done that, and will be there doing it with you! You are not being sold a tour by an agent who has never been to the Everglades or is operating from an out­-of­-state sales office.

All Inclusive: Unlike “bare boat” guides which charge extra for renting equipment or providing food, our tours are fully outfitted and guided. We provide all food and drinks for the entire tour in the all­ inclusive price. You do not need to arrive ahead and drive around an unfamiliar city shopping for bland and unhealthy dehydrated food. Our tours also include the required national park camping permit and fees. You won't have to arrive 24 hours ahead to stand in line and risk being shut out of a campsite. Let us handle the details!

We also provide, at no additional cost, all necessary equipment needed for a first class kayaking and camping experience. We provide both single and double sea kayaks, simply identify your preference when you make your reservation. Unlike any of our competitors, we include freshly laundered sleeping bags, comfortable mattresses, packable camp pillows and several dry bags for your personal items. You do not need to bring anything from home except a few personal items as outlined in the trip packing list. Some of the high quality equipment we use includes: freshly laundered 20F Marmot sleeping bags, comfortable Thermarest self inflating mattresses, packable Thermarest camp pillows, 2 person Kelty free standing dome tents, two SeaLine dry bags and both single and tandem Seaward sea kayaks. If you prefer your own gear, even tent or kayak, you are welcome to bring it with you from home.

Finally, unlike any of our competitors, we can provide comfortable and extremely convenient pre­- and post-­tour accommodations at the Ivey House located near the tour start and end point. Imagine yourself enjoying a well earned shower and cold drink immediately after returning from the backcountry!

Several Operators Offer Everglades Tours, So Why Choose Us?

Get Off the Beaten Track: Our itineraries offer you the opportunity to explore, truly experience and appreciate the Everglades backcountry. You will spend your days paddling easily, slowly and quietly with minimal impact on the surrounding environment. This allows you to not only see the wildlife, but to get close and observe its behavior unaffected by human impacts. You may spot a docile manatee lolling at the surface, kayak in the middle of frolicking dolphins, watch a shy sea turtle coming up for a breath and observe pelicans diving for their dinner at sunset. You will also spend your nights sleeping in the backcountry which allows you the time to fully experience the Everglades that day trippers miss. You will watch spectacular sunsets from remote beaches, warm yourself around a blazing beach campfire, sleep beneath immense star­-filled night skies, listen to soft manatee breaths throughout the night and awaken to songbird­ filled mornings.

Private Small Group Trips: You will have a private guide and be kayaking with an intimate group of a few like minded companions. You will not be herded like cattle on a mass market tour. And, as you know, one of the best parts of travel is who you meet along the journey. On our trips you have a head start because you're traveling with people who more than likely share your values and your passion to experience the natural world. You might very well meet new friends that you'll want to keep for life. But don't take our word for it, see what they have to say for themselves in the Testimonials section below.

Guides Worth Following: We recognize that the guide is the single most important factor in the success of any guided trip and ours are the best. The owner, Dave K has worked as a professional guide since 1996 and lived in the Everglades since 2004. He is a University of Florida certified Florida Master Naturalist, American Canoe Association certified Open Water Sea Kayak Instructor and National Outdoor Leadership School certified Wilderness First Responder. Your guide will be your route finder, wildlife spotter, naturalist interpreter, campsite organizer, kayak packer, broken gear repairman, spirit motivator, emergency rescuer, personal chef and pot scrubber. They will share their knowledge of this unique environment with you, instruct you in kayaking skills, keep you safe, make you feel comfortable camping in the backcountry, and prepare delicious meals for you. They are also just plain fun! Kayak with us and you'll get to know the Everglades like the back of your hand.

These overnight kayak camping tours are operated by Florida Outdoor Adventures which is solely owned by David Kochendorfer (Dave K). Dave K has been a professional guide since 1996 and lived in the Everglades since 2004. Florida Outdoor Adventures is a fully licensed and insured guide/outfitter business located in Collier County Florida. All tours are operated inside Everglades National Park from the Canoe/Kayak Access located at the Gulf Coast Visitor Center in Everglades City. Florida Outdoor Adventures carries the required Everglades National Park Commercial Use Authorization permit and guide/outfitter business general liability insurance.

Kayak Camping, Everglades National Park