Florida Scalloping is a common pastime for Floridian’s. You will probably set out from the Crystal River or Homosassa. I’ve written extensively about both locations, and I suggest you read about both sites first to determine where you will start from:
This article focuses on everything that you can do at Crystal River. It includes activities, places to stay, where to eat and where to see the manatees!
Once you have decided on which location you will start from you, need to understand what you need to be successful. You can scallop even if you do not own a boat. If you are not comfortable going solo, you can book a charter or shared tour. These recommendations assume that you are going to skip the tours and do it yourself.
Here a list of Travel Essentials You Need for Florida Scalloping.
|If you own a boat great. If not, I am not recommending that you buy a boat. Instead, here are some places you can rent from:|
I recently came across a new app that you can use to search for boat rentals and boat charters: GetMyBoat. Think of this as the Airbnb of boating!
|You will need some money. While you are on the water most facilities like floating stores, bait stations or scallop cleaners only accept cash.|
|Again, unless you own a boat, I am not suggesting you buy one a GPS. Most rentals do not come with GPS systems. They will give you a map. Fortunately, you have options:|
Google Maps: Now, you will need WIFI for this one, but you are so close to shore that it’s unlikely that you will not have a signal
Aqua Map Marine: Boating GPS App – $9.99 for just Florida
|If you own a boat, you likely have built-in music. Even if, you do you know that the wiring can rust. If you are renting, then there will be no music unless you bring your own. Most people jam when on the water. Unless you want no choice in what you listen to carry a Bluetooth speaker to cover all bases. This one is waterproof!|
If you own a boat, you likely have built-in music, and sometimes it does not work because the wiring can rust. If you are renting, then there will be no music unless you bring your own. Most people jam when on the water. Unless you want no choice in what you listen to carry a Bluetooth speaker to cover all bases, this one is waterproof!
|Recreational scallopers between the ages of 16 and 65 must have a current Florida saltwater fishing license. FWC patrols the area and they do check boats and limits.|
|Technically, you could only use a swim mask and a snorkel. I strongly suggest you get fins because depending on the tide, you may need to dive more than four or five feet. Having the fins makes diving easy and stops you from tiring out. Everyone in our household has one of these sets. We’ve had them for two years now, and they are still going strong. These come in multiple colors, so everyone can quickly identify their own set. They also come in handy bags that keep the kit intact.|
|A lot of people forget to bring this necessity. You know what it’s like to snorkel for a few hours. Time in the water will fog your mask. This product defogs your mask. We always carry this when we boat.|
|Any child under six is required by law to wear a life jacket while the boat in motion. If you rent a boat, they will be providing them, but they will be the generic orange ones. Kids tend to hate these as they look well, generic! Life jackets are also great flotation devices for when everyone is tired. O’Neil is a great brand – they last forever.|
|You need a dry box to store your keys and cell phone. A must for any water activity.|
|Divers-down flags are required by law.|
|You need mesh bags to store the scallops as you collect them. Often these are referred to as dive bags. Don’t buy dive bags. They are much more expensive and usually black. Colorful bags are more noticeable to spot if you accidentally drop one. They are also much more stylish. You can match them to your Swim Mask, Snorkel & Fins.|
|You’d be surprised how many people go out on the water without thinking about how they will bring their trash back. You need trash bags! I like to use scented ones because fishing and scalloping can be stinky!|
|I don’t use a glove by most people do. Scallops can nip you and naturally, there are other critters down there. It’s just a matter of preference. If you are squeamish, you should consider getting gloves.|
|This net is a staple on our boat. Some of the kids prefer to catch the scallops with this flexible net. If the water is shallow enough, you can float and scoop them up. We also use these nets when fishing.|
|I carry Dramamine whenever we travel in the event we go on the water. I also bring in on our boat for guests. Dramamine treats severe symptoms on the spot. Dramamine prevents nausea, dizziness, vomiting & queasiness. Don’t underestimate your ability to manage the waves. While the waters are not typically rough, we have encountered a storm or two. We’ve had waves. If you don’t know your tolerance take this before you begin your journey.|
|Once you have caught your limit, you need to get your scallops on ice. You can pour ice into the buckets and completely submerge them immersed in ice. The ice helps to open the scallops so that they are ready for cleaning. You probably own a cooler. If not, I recommend a cheap rolling one that’s easy to get on and off the boat.|
|Scallop Knife||If you decide to clean the scallops yourself, this knife is convenient because it’s flat. You can do this with a traditional knife, but then you’ll need gloves.|
|First Aid Kit||Rental boats should have a first aid kit on board and check before you head it. We don’t leave without one. You would be surprised how handy these come in for cuts and scrapes. This one is perfect for travel because it’s small, light and will clip onto a belt or luggage. This little set contains a whopping 92 items, and it’s only 0.35 pounds!|
|If you know anything about me, you’ll understand brands are not my thing. Therefore, for sunscreen for me, it’s about cost and practicality. No Ad is my go-to, particularly the cream versions which I can transfer into smaller bottles if I need to.|
|You will need this for your lips! Zinka Colored Sunblock Zinc is Waterproof, moisturizes your lips while protecting and it looks great!|
Looking for more posts on Florida? Start here:
- Coco Key Water Park – Orlando Florida
- Disney World Resorts on A Dime
- Five Best Airboat Rides Near Orlando
- Homosassa – Is It Better Than The Crystal River?
- Rainbow River – Why You Should Visit
- The Crystal River – Scalloping and Swimming With Manatees
- The Dome Houses of Cape Romano – Marco Island Florida
- Vero Beach – A Tropical Paradise
- Westgate River Ranch Resort and Rodeo
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