Silver Springs and Gainesville. Short drive today. Whew!

The last time we visited Silver Springs it was not a Florida state park. It was an *extremely* mini-version of Mouselandia with exotic aminals and a petting zoo and some not-very-fancy amusement park stuff and monkeys and LOTS of alligators. Sometime in the last 30 years, the state of Florida adopted Silver Springs and it became a state park. No more giraffes. I spied a moldering roller-coaster and water slide and I dunno what else in the corner of my eye as we turned the corner toward the entrance into the park.

Nowadays you can rent a kayak there. The GG asked if I wanted to do that. Well. I wasn’t dressed for kayaking today at all and what I really wanted to do was go on the Silver Springs glass-bottom boats. I’m not sure what we paid to go on that boat but it was well worth it. Cap’n Jean piloted our tour and she talked about the history of the springs and river and pointed out wildlife whenever she saw it. No alligators or monkeys (although those are both around). They don’t feed wild creatures any more and that’s a good thing. As much fun as it was to see all those creatures years ago, I much preferred the park in the natural state it was today.

So here is a spring from a very deep cave, 81 feet if I remember accurately, but I can’t remember if the diver managed to find the bottom, at least not on that expotition. I know that he has gone on to map Fla caves and underground waters and I will have to google him.

This is just a cool view from a new boardwalk in the park. I loved the greeeeeeen!

This was a backroad kind of day. We didn’t travel on an interstate or a toll road or a turnpike or anything. We stopped to walk a short boardwalk off US 441 south of Gainesville to see if there were any gators and of course there was one. One of these days, we will take the time to explore more of this park.

So, Gainesville is nowadays an actual STOP on our Fla trips because our niece Pengie and her accomplice Corey live here. They brew their own beer and are also connoisseurs of food and beverages and it is always fun to see them because they take us all kinds of fun places. Today we started out at First Magnitude Brewery, where we sat outside in the garden area. We headed up to Crane Ramen for dinner but there was a wait so we went into Bull for a drink.

I could’ve probably spent the whole night at the Bull but we NEEDED to EAT and the Crane Ramen was wonderful and then we walked over to the Whiskey House, where the bartender actually remembered us from when we visited it approximately two years ago.

And then when we got back to our hotel, we parked next to a truck with the name “Gay” on it. Of course we HAD to take a pic of it because our beloved s-i-l is named Gay.

Fortunately, this time, the iPhone that took the pic did not fall down into the street and shatter. Because then we would have to make an appointment at the Atlanta Apple Store to get it fixed. We do not want to do that, oh no we do not. We will be in Atlanta tomorrow and we do not want to spend our time at the Apple Store. Not this time.

One Response to “Silver Springs and Gainesville. Short drive today. Whew!”

  1. Margaret Says:

    Cool photos! I don’t like gators though. I would be happy never seeing one. 🙂

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