River paddleboard

Top 5 Ways to Enjoy the Indian River Lagoon

A water-lover’s dream.

The Indian River Lagoon is considered to be one of the most biologically diverse estuaries in North America with over 4,300 species documented, all relying on this important body of water for food and shelter. This shallow-water estuary covers roughly 156-miles of Florida’s east coast, from Ponce de Leon Inlet (near New Smyrna Beach) to Jupiter Inlet and includes three unique bodies of water that are home to the Space Coast: The Indian River, the Banana River, and Mosquito Lagoon. This lagoon is also part of the Intracoastal Waterway, a channel which parallels the Atlantic Ocean.

So, what’s the best way to enjoy this lagoon now that you know a bit more about this body of water? Here are a few ways to get out and experience the Indian River Lagoon.

Indian River Lagoon Paddleboard

Kayak and/or Paddle Board

Whether you like sitting down or standing up when paddling, taking out your kayak or paddle board gives you access to both the wide-open spaces of the lagoon or hidden spots not accessible by boat. Get a nice workout as you explore and don’t be surprised if you happen upon some dolphin or manatee.

Need a kayak or paddle board? Check out these businesses for all your rental needs.

•    A1A Beach Rentals
•    Adventure Kayak of Cocoa Beach
•    Sobe Surf

Eco tours tour boat with guests

Eco Tours

One of the many ways to ensure you get an up close and personal experience of the wildlife that makes the Space Coast its home is to go on an eco-tour with one of the many businesses offering this type of excursion. Depending on the time of the year will determine what kind of tours are available. Year-round you can enjoy sunrise, mid-day or afternoon, and sunset tours that offer a variety of places, as well as mode of water transportation like airboats and riverboats, kayaks, paddle boards, and even a sailboat. Between June and October, bioluminescent tours are a favorite, giving you a magical evening experience that will leave you awestruck!

•    A Day Away Kayak Tours
•    Airboat Rides of Melbourne
•    BK Adventure
•    Space Coast River Tours
•    St. Johns Airboat River Tours
•    Wildside Tours

Man on Jet Ski

Rent a Boat

If you’re the kind of person who wants to chart out your own path and create your own adventure out on the water, renting a boat may be just the thing for you. Although the Space Coast doesn’t have many motorboat rentals, there are a couple of places that provide exactly what you need to motor your way through the Indian River Lagoon. So, whether you’re wanting to leisurely cruise around or prefer to fast track your way to the hot spot fishing areas, renting a boat during your time on the Space Coast is sure to give you the experience you’re after. 

•    321 Boat Rentals
•    Cape Crossing Boat Rentals
•    Kenzi Boats

Man Fishing while another man fishes across the river


If you’re looking for a proper fishing excursion where catching is almost guaranteed, then shoreline fishing or booking a charter is the route you want to go. Booking a charter is best if you’re wanting to see why Mosquito Lagoon is so famous for this sport. From the Indian River and Banana River to all the hidden coves within the Indian River Lagoon, no matter the time of day, your fishing adventure will quickly become a catching adventure when you fish the waters of the Space Coast. And don’t worry, there’s even charters for those of you who like to fly fish. 

•    All Water Adventures
•    Fine Line Charters with Captain Jim Ross
•    Captain Frank Catino – IRL Fly Fishing & Light Tackle Guide
•    Peter Deeks Outdoors

** A fishing license is required, but most charters provide that with their fees. Make sure you ask when booking to confirm. Or if you do plan to map out your own fishing excursion, be sure to purchase your license for the type of fishing you plan to do.

•    Saltwater Fishing
•    Freshwater Fishing

Outdoor patio

Riverfront Dining

The Space Coast offers many different waterfront dining experiences, but if you’re looking for a spot to eat that overlooks parts of the Indian River Lagoon, here are a few places to enjoy good food, from quick and easy to fine dining, all with a beautiful view.

•    New York New York Titusville
•    Shiloh’s Steak and Seafood

•    Pineda Inn Bar & Grill
•    Ryan’s Pizza & Pub (waterfront views)
•    River Rocks

•    Chart House
•    Grills Riverside
•    Ichabod’s Dockside Bar & Grill
•    Squid Lips

No matter how you decide to spend your time here on the Space Coast, make sure you plan out your trip, bring your camera so you can capture the beauty and remember your time here, and add one or all of the top five ways to experience the Indian River Lagoon for a time you won’t soon forget.  
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