Are you looking for a fun way to cool down with the family without the expense of a mainstream water park? You’re in luck because there are plenty of refreshing springs near Gainesville where you can go tubing while getting back in touch with nature.

Weeki Wachee Springs

Two hours south of Gainesville in Spring Hill, Weeki Wachee Springs provides a fun-filled afternoon for you and your group as you can go tubing at their water park, Buccaneer Bay, as well as watch wildlife shows and mermaid performances that take place on the premises. Admission for adults is $13 while children get a discount of $8. Inner tube rentals range from $8 to $15, and don't forget to try the lazy river float as well.

Related content: See Mermaids and More With the Family at Weeki Wachee Springs

Rainbow River Springs

Located in Dunnellon, Rainbow River Springs is a beautiful spot for tubing, kayaking, canoeing, and tubing. With a $5.00 entrance fee, you can do all of this plus see wildlife, walk nature trails, and go camping. For large gatherings you can even rent pavilions. The price for tube rental is $11 each, and the park is open from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., so you can spend all day at Rainbow Springs.

Alexander Springs

Another beautiful place to go tubing is Alexander Springs just 45 minutes south of Gainesville in Ocala. Located within Ocala National Forest, the springs are perfect 72° year-round and offer plenty of other things to do like scuba diving, camping, and canoeing.

Ginnie Springs

Located in the town of High Springs slightly north of Gainesville, Ginnie Springs Florida is one of the most beautiful places to go tubing. With immaculate waters, the Santa Fe River is ready to welcome you and your family for a fun day of floating. At 72°, the water at Ginnie Springs is one of the best places in Florida to cool off and kick back. A single tube can be rented at just $5.60 per day, or you can get a double tube for $11.21. The fun doesn’t stop there because Ginnie Springs also offers camping, snorkeling events and courses, and even volleyball, so there's something for everyone in the family.

Ichetucknee Springs

Further north of Gainesville, Ichetucknee Springs is dedicated to keeping the natural springs clean and beautiful, so disposable items are prohibited, but you and your family are welcome to rent or bring your own tubes for a fun afternoon of floating down the gorgeous waters. When it's not summer season, you can launch either from Midpoint or Dampiers Landing where you can float for 45 minutes to an hour. Tubes can be rented for $5 to $20 depending on the size of the tube or raft, and the staff at Ichetucknee Tube Center will pick them up when you’re done. Ichetucknee Springs State Park is open from 8:00 a.m. to sundown, and parking fees run from $2 to $6 depending on your vehicle. Suit up and enjoy!

Related content: Unexpected Adventures in Gainesville

Skip the expensive tickets and crowds and go tubing at one of these beautiful springs near Gainesville.

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Cover photo courtesy of Flickr