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Outdoor Activities and Adventures in Kingston

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Port Royal
One of the oldest and most historic regions of the country, Port Royal has maintained much of its independence as well as its heritage. Once the enclave of pirates and other outlaws, there is still a strong seafaring tradition. Much of the old city, described in the 17th century as the "wickedest city in the west", lies underwater beside the town, the result of an earthquake that in 1692 swallowed about two-thirds of the then-living space. Since then, another earthquake in 1907, numerous hurricanes, fires, and various population-decimating diseases have plagued the town. Despite all, the waters around Port Royal are a virtual archaeological gold mine, filled with pieces of history that tell of everyday life in the earliest days of English occupation. Port Royal is also home to the Archaeological Division of the Jamaica National Heritage Trust (JNHT), which recently completed a sonar survey of the underwater city, revealing a sunken pirate ship in the Kingston Harbour. To date thousands of artefacts have been recovered, and there are plans to develop a local museum to showcase these items once the research on them is complete.
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Blue & John Crow Mountains National Park
Jamaica's World Heritage Site, the Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park, is one of the richest biodiversity sites in the world and a nature-lover’s paradise. It is home to over 1,300 flowering plant species, the largest butterfly in the Americas - the 6-inch Giant Swallowtail and over 200 species of native and migratory birds.
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Treasure Beach
Travelling on Jamaica’s South Coast, you’ll discover a treasure chest of coves and bays, where the Caribbean meets our sandy and sometimes rocky shores. A mixture of dark and white-sand stretches, rocky coves, fishermen’s enclaves and secluded swimming spots, the South Coast’s shores promise a range of possibilities. A favourite beach community of both locals and visitors alike is Treasure Beach (a spot that surely lives up to its name). Treasure Beach is a six-mile stretch of coral-coloured and sometimes black sands, private coves and rocky shores. For travellers who want to discover the South Coast’s vibrant local culture and people and are in search of untrodden beaches, a visit to one of Treasure Beach’s main bays – Billy's, Calabash, Fort Charles (also known as Starve Gut) Great and Frenchman’s – is a must. In Calabash Bay, friendly fishermen dock their brightly painted canoes and unload the day’s catch. Visitors swarm, waiting patiently at beachfront cafes and stands, so they can be first to enjoy it – soon to be seasoned and grilled to perfection. Other uniquely Jamaican dishes, such as curried goat, jerked meat and pumpkin soup are also available at roadside stands at Treasure Beach’s public beaches. All lovely, laid-back stretches are well-suited for swimming, snorkeling, biking, hiking, and of course, the mellow vibes of kicking back in the sun with a cold Red Stripe in hand.
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Croydon In The Mountains
The award-winning Croydon Plantation is a working estate nestled in the foothills of the Catadupa Mountains and offers visitors breath-taking, panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Visitors are invited to take in the rich history of the plantation, which is the birthplace of Samuel Sharpe, one of Jamaica's national heroes. Tours operate on Tuesdays to Fridays and offer the opportunity to taste many different varieties of pineapple and citrus fruits. Sample exotic and delicious fruit and the juices made from them. This tour also includes a delicious feast of barbequed lunch served with world-famous Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee.
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Ahhh Ras Natango Gallery and Garden
The garden is all of that and so much more. Carved in the hillside are terraces for walking and viewing the varied plants. The tour of the garden is 45 minutes to one hour, but visitors generally stay after the guided tour and spend time just looking at the plants and listening to the birds. There are two fantasy gardens. A fairy’s village, between the roots of a huge tree we were forced to cut after Hurricane Ivan in 2003, is a teaching tool for student field trips. They use their imagination to write stories about life in the village. The other is a Dinosaur Era garden. This too is a teaching tool, used to teach about our impact on nature, make students aware about the endangered and extinct animals in Jamaica, and how the pet trade affects wildlife. The garden also has its very own King Tut’s Falls, leading to the Koi Pond. You may even hold our turtles . All paintings in the gallery are for sale. The medium is acrylic on canvas. Paintings reflect the vibrant colors of the island. One section is of Jamaica’s flora and fauna, birders will enjoy paintings of our endemic birds and plant life that have been presented in the gallery.
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Rastafari Indigenous Village
Visit with Jamaica's Rastafari people. Warm and welcoming, they are happy to share with you their values of equality, healthy living and connectedness with nature. Located just outside Montego Bay, Rastafari Indigenous Village is a living cultural center that offers you an opportunity to experience the Rastafari way of life. Whether you choose a half or full-day tour, you'll have the unique opportunity to connect with Rastafarians and learn more about their culture and values. You'll be introduced to drum makers who create traditional drums by hand, using techniques that have been passed down through generations. You can tour an organic vegetable and herb garden and learn more about why the Rastafari choose to follow a vegan diet, and what are its benefits. You can then have a meal with the Rastafari, and taste for yourself. A small store offers traditional handicrafts and jewellery. The tour concludes with a performance of traditional drumming and singing in the center of the village.
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Doctor's Cave Beach
Today, the beach has been greatly improved. The facilities are excellent. The club has well kept changing rooms, showers and lavatories. Its new entrance, administrative office and shop are also quite inviting. Beach chairs, umbrellas and lilos can be rented daily, the beach is manicured every morning and the translucent waters which the doctors recognized as buoyant and invigorating have not changed. Although many other beaches have some of the qualities of Doctor's Cave, none have all of them. The Sand Restaurant and Bar provide a great variety of meals and drinks. Come and enjoy our great famous beach on your next visit to Montego Bay! Doctor's Cave is also a part of the Montego Bay Marine Park which has a wide variety of marine life among the coral reefs.
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Dolphin Cove Montego Bay
Dolphin Cove Negril sits on 23 acres of ocean frontage in just a short car ride from Negril. Guests have the opportunity to interact and swim with dolphins, enjoying the thrill and love of these amazing lovable marine mammals. At Dolphin Cove Negril, riding a camel and interacting with stingrays make this a place where you come for the day but remember for a lifetime. Remember to take along your towel, sunscreen and be prepared to have fun!
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East End Lighthouse Park
The first lighthouse on Grand Cayman was erected at Gun Bluff in the early 1900s, which is approximately a half-mile from the present site of the East End Lighthouse Park. This was required under the Justices and Vestry’s East End Light Law (1906). A 60-foot ship’s mast stood on the Bluff and William James Watler was hired as a lightkeeper to ensure that a kerosene lantern was hoisted to the top of the mast at 6:00pm every evening and lowered at 6:00am every morning. A fine “not exceeding forty shillings” was to be imposed on him if it was discovered that he had been lax in his duties. The light could be seen 10 miles out to sea. The lighthouse at Gorling Bluff served until 1937, when the British Government gave order for five modern “navigational lights” to be erected around the coasts of all three Cayman Islands. The lights were to be placed on Crown Property, however, so that same year the Crown acquired Gorling Bluff. The replacement lighthouse was constructed by Mr. Morell from England, and it is this light which serves to the present day, though it is now solar-powered. Part of the wooden frame of the previous lighthouse remains, but the old kerosene lamp is now in the Cayman Islands National Museum.
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Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park
The Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park is a unique blend of natural beauty, culture and history. Enjoy the simple elegance of a traditional Caymanian garden with the startling beauty of an exotic floral display. Spend an hour or two… or a full day! One thing is certain, each of our visitors will leave with a greater appreciation for the delicate balance of nature and the dedicated care in it’s preservation. There are so many different gardens and natural areas to enjoy, providing something for everyone to enjoy at the Queen Elizabeth II Botanic Park.
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Cayman Crystal Caves
Spectacular Crystal Caves located in a Lush Tropical Forest. Fully guide by local guides. One of Caymans newest and most popular tourist attrations: Situated in a lush tropical forest in Northside, Grand Cayman, Cayman Crystal Caves is the island’s newest nature tourist attraction All visitors receive guided walking tours. Tours are approximately 1 ½ hours and take you through the surrounding tropical forest area and 3 caves spectacular caves. When you visit Cayman Crystal Caves, you will be escorted with a knowledgeable Tour Guide, and you will join us on an adventure exploration of “Cayman Down Under”. You will venture into amazing caves where you’ll see stalactite and stalagmite crystal structures and otherworldly formations, formed by single drops of water and the slow passage of time. Tour through the unique tropical forest nature, under which the caves formed. Amongst the forest and caves is captivating tropical plant and animal life, including strangler balsam trees, air plants, parrots, and bats…. Winner of the Governor's Award - The Tourism Industry Conservation Award One of the very highest rated top "Things To Do in Grand Cayman"
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Rum Point
Located on the picturesque north side of the island, “Rum Point” is famous for its island atmosphere, white sandy beach and shallow clear waters. It is an ideal spot for swimming and snorkelling. The beach hammocks, shady trees, picnic tables and delicious food beckon visitors and locals alike seven days a week. Rum Point also offers changing rooms, showers, huts, hammocks, snorkelling and volleyball nets. About 45 minutes by car from most hotels and the cruise terminal, Rum Point is well worth the day trip. Another option for accessing Rum Point is by ferry! With affordable prices and killer views, this is a great way to get here and relax or enjoy a wonderful lunch or dinner.
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Spotts Beach
Off Shamrock Road in the Spotts Newlands part of Grand Cayman is where you’ll happen upon Spotts Beach. Away from everyone else, Spotts Beach has homes and waterfront condos surrounded by iron-shore cliffs and white sand, while still providing plenty of space for a surfside walk. It’s a nice place to watch the sunrise since Spotts Beach faces to the south. There are cabanas along with some benches and tables available for barbecues or picnics. There is also great snorkelling due to the limited amount of watercraft.
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Stingray City
Stingray City is among the Cayman Islands’ most popular attractions. It’s where aquatic lovers can mingle with marine life by wading among friendly stingrays that congregate near the sandy shore. This once-in-a-lifetime Cayman experience invites adventurers to get up close to some of the most magnificent animals in the world. Experience the majestic southern Atlantic stingrays in only three feet of water as you brush up against these creatures. Stingray City is a group of sandbars located 25 miles off the shore of Grand Cayman, and offers tours ranging from 3 to 5 hours. During the tours, you can swim with, feed, and take memorable photos with these friendly rays.
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Cayman Islands National Museum
Located in George Town and housed inside the oldest public building in the Cayman Islands, this museum showcases both the natural and cultural history of the islands through dynamic programmes, exhibits, and displays.
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Governor
Governor's Beach is a relaxing spot within Seven Mile Beach, located beside and in front of the Governor's home. With families visiting in the morning and games played in the afternoon, this shore sees all the action. Governor's Beach is excellent for snorkelling, a picturesque stroll or floating on the water with a cold drink. Beachgoers can enjoy the shade while snacking on the sea grapes that fall from the trees in June and July. And as with all views to the west here, you’ll witness the most memorable sunsets.
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Hell Grand Cayman
In the Cayman Islands, tourists can go to Hell. This uniquely named attraction located in the district of West Bay on Grand Cayman, is well known for a small patch of black limestone formations that can be seen poking out from its lush surroundings. Hell was created by salt and lime deposits over 24 million years and the legend behind its name still continues to be debated. After marvelling at the field of black peaks, make sure to send your friends a postcard from Hell. The Hell attraction site is accessible at all times and is free to the public. There are three gift shops on the property as well as public restrooms which are open daily from 8:00 am – 5:00pm.
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Cayman Turtle Centre
The Cayman Turtle Centre is the perfect place for families to learn about our islands’ history while having lots of fun at the same time. This award-winning wildlife park provides its guests with a chance to come face to face with some of the most remarkable and ancient animals on earth. Within the centre, there are a variety of interactive activities available – including, predator tanks and swimming or snorkelling in a saltwater lagoon filled with vibrant species of fish and green sea turtles. Another magnificent stop along the tour is the free-flight aviary, where guests can feed colourful birds as they soar around the room. Before you leave, take a stroll down the tranquil nature trail and admire the unique plant species and butterflies, or stop by Smiley’s Saltwater Lagoon and watch the nine-foot crocodile get fed. Guests can also learn more about the history of sea turtles and the centre’s on-going conservation efforts.
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Labadee Beach
A horseshoe-shaped bay set into the northern coastline, Labadee is the beach of choice for the cruise ships that regularly call at Haiti. The beach stretches over a mile of soft, silky sand, and crystal-clear blue waters. Labadee is on the same coast as the beautiful Cormier beach, but offers a unique array of attractions catering to visitors who arrive on the cruise ships. You don’t need to join a cruise to get here though - while the Haitian government leases a portion of the bay to Royal Caribbean, most of the area is open to other visitors, and many of the attractions can be accessed by non-cruise guests for a fee. Labadee Beach is home to top-notch adventure attractions including coastal tours, water parks, kayaking, snorkelling and the Dragon's Breath - the world's longest over-water zip-line.
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Crab Cay
Crab Cay, or Cayo Cangrejo, sits roughly one kilometer (.6 miles) off the east coast of Isla de Providencia. From Providencia, the view of the small outcropping makes for a prime photo op, but snorkelers will be itching to hire a boat or rent a kayak and dive into the crystal-clear waters—a dazzling array of shades of blue—surrounding the cay.
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Stocking Island
Discover the exquisite beauty of Stocking Island at your own pace. This tour has been designed for guests who want to take a trip without a tour guide. It will depart from George Town at the Government Dock and will begin with a short sightseeing trip across Elizabeth Harbour to Stocking Island.
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Love Beach
This small beach, located just below the Stella Maris Resort on the Atlantic side, is partially protected by offshore rocks. Imagine sitting here on the pretty, coarse white sand, alternating with occasional natural rock pools, feeling the ocean breezes, and watching the wave action. Great for snorkelling! The rocks adjacent to the reef contain a wondrous assortment of marine life including parrotfish, gigantic spiny sea urchins, fan and brain coral, queen and grey angelfish, damselfish, grey and yellowtail snapper and butterflyfish.
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Bay of Pigs
The name Bay of Pigs immediately brings to mind the failed invasion by a US-backed army of counter-revolutionaries that happened here in 1961. Nowadays however, it is a destination that is increasing in popularity for tourists for its natural beauty, birding and variety of wildlife, and as a place where excellent diving and snorkelling can be done from the shore. The waters are warm, clear, calm, and brimming with sea life. Back from the shoreline is some dense forest much of which is protect in national parks. There are some interesting excursions that can be done through these forests with local park guides, to caves and natural swimming holes.
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La Caleta Underwater National Park
La Caleta Underwater National Park, one of the first in the region, is a popular dive site located close to Santo Domingo. It’s known for its multiple shipwrecks, but also for its abundant marine life ready to be explored by all levels of divers, from beginner to advanced. Depths go from six meters (20 feet) to 180 meters (591 feet), over an area stretching 10 km² (four square miles) from Las Golondrinas Cave to Punta Caucedo. La Caleta’s irregular topography includes three defined terraces, underwater caves, and well-known shipwrecks. A variety of corals and schools of colorful critters thrive here, using the reefs as shelter and food source, including grouper, balloon fish, rays, lionfish, octopuses, and turtles. Among the more popular shipwrecks is the Hickory, a 1984 ship located at about 18 meters (60 feet) deep, submerged in 1984 by a group of submarine researchers to create an artificial reef for the proliferation of marine life. Additional wrecks include El Limón and Capitán Alsina, located about 30 meters (100 feet) deep, and the Don Quico at about 58 meters (190 feet) of depth. Nearby, an impressive system of karst rocks creates a meandering network of underwater caverns and tunnels over 100 meters (328 feet) long—an ideal place for technical diving.
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Guardian Blue Hole
The Guardian Blue Hole is said to have the second deepest cave in The Islands of The Bahamas, with a maximum explored depth of 436 feet (133 meters). The surface pond is fresh water, with a layer of hydrogen sulfide sometimes present at the halocline. The cave was named for a solitary barracuda that at one time inhabited the main entrance pond. Some of the walls of the cave are highly decorated with stalactites and stalagmites. Several deep pits within the cave drop from 45 m depths to more than 130 m.
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Playa Jibacoa
Playa Jibacoa area, mostly chosen by Cubans, is located on the north coast of Mayabeque. It has resorts and several camping sites of good quality. The area is notable for the beautiful typical landscape with a deep blue sea, surrounded by cliffs, on the side facing the land, and rocky hills where are located the hotels. The excellent beaches are famous for their clear and shallow water and is a local and tourist favourite for snorkeling from the beach. It is worth noting the scuba diving area opposite the shore, where you'll find coral reefs and a good amount of fish and shellfish. There is a wide range of activities to practice in the area, from small hiking to horseback riding or it may be good to rent paddle boats
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Ardastra Gardens & Zoo
Head to the heart of Nassau for a unique visit to the Ardastra Gardens Zoo & Conservation Centre. As the first and only zoo in The Bahamas, it features more than four acres of lush tropical gardens inhabited by a dazzling array of animal species—including the national bird of The Bahamas, the Caribbean flamingo. Hand-feed playful parrots, meet beautiful Bahamian boa constrictors and be sure to watch the world-famous marching flamingos in action. Originally created as a nature preserve by Jamaican horticulturalist Hedley Edwards in the 1950’s, Ardastra Gardens & Zoo has developed over the decades into a tropical garden, conservation centre, boutique zoo and now wildlife rescue & rehab facility. Today, thousands of visitors visit Ardastra annually to marvel at the tranquil, restorative gardens and enjoy close encounters with a wonderful collection of over 135 animals, complete with a petting zoo, secret garden and flamingo arena.
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Nassau Paradise Island
Nassau Paradise Island is the place to be for anyone who loves the sun, sand and sea. With so many stretches of beautiful beaches—and miles upon miles of powdery white sand—there’s always a perfect place for you to lie back, relax, and enjoy in The Bahamas.
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Dolphin Cay Atlantis
The extraordinary 14-acre environment of Dolphin Cay at Atlantis, Paradise Island showcases one of the largest and most sophisticated marine habitats and animal rescue-rehabilitation facilities unlike anything in the world. In addition to caring for dolphins and sea lions and studying their behavior, Dolphin Cay offers unparalleled educational experiences. Visitors can participate in creative, non-disruptive “interactions” that build real awareness, stir emotion, and help fund our conservation efforts. Wearing a wetsuit and sitting in waist-high water, you will have the chance to get close to the dolphins, face-to-face, feeling that personal connection. What could be better than swimming freely with these extraordinary mammals in deep water? Underwater acrobatics and the rush of feeling the dolphins swim beside you are only a part of this magical encounter.
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Blue Lagoon Island
Located just three miles northeast of Nassau, Blue Lagoon Island (also known as Salt Cay) is home to dolphins and sea lions at Dolphin Encounters, but it also offers everything that you would want on a private island getaway. You can swim in a hidden lagoon with clear blue water, snorkel right off the beach and see coral reefs teeming with numerous species of tropical fish, sunbathe on white-sand beaches surrounded by coconut palm trees, and walk through lush natural vegetation that is the habitat for nesting birds. You can purchase a package that includes round-trip boat transfer to Blue Lagoon Island, lunch, free access to the Inflatable Aqua Park, plus use of the facilities, beach sports and game equipment. Water sports equipment is also available to rent: paddleboards, kayaks, clear bottom kayaks, water bikes, underwater scooters, and snorkeling gear.
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Tayrona Park
On one side the waves smash against volcanic rocks that are lined up next the beach: on the other side you seem to see a mirage because it would seem that a portion of the Amazon jungle arises in the midst of the Caribbean.
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The Colon and Bolivar peaks
The Colón and Bolivar peaks the highest points of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta (at 5,775 and 5560 meters above sea level, respectively) and are considered sacred places by the ancient Tayrona culture, whose descendants are responsible for ensuring for environmental balance of this zone.
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Malecon
The Malecón, first named Avenida del Golfo, is Cuba’s most famous sea-side avenue. The project was undertaken by Don Francisco de Albear, Cuba’s greatest engineer at the time. Albear came up with a complex but smart design for the seawall, which was to be a lot more than just a promenade. According to historical records, the avenue was supposed to be constructed 4 meters above sea level. The whole project would cost 850,000 pesos, but the Spanish government didn’t bring itself to issue the construction permit and Albear’s proposal was postponed. The construction of the Malecón began in 1901. After the first stretch was completed, for which several public facilities were demolished, construction works were resumed in 1921, and again in the 30’s.The architectural richness of the Malecón is also expressed through 18th- and 19th-century stately homes, followed by a row of 20th-century buildings with an unusual combination of styles and profusion of portals, columns and pilasters that loosely follow classical lines. But beyond the architectural values of the buildings, its greatest charm lies in being somewhere to stroll or hang out on a stiflingly hot day. It is a place where couples come to make amends, especially at sunset, in the company of children and fishermen. It is Havana’s outdoor lounge.
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Gaulding Key Beach
This long stretch of white powdery sand beach is a great place to pack a picnic basket and spend a relaxing day at the beach swimming and snorkelling. At low tide, you can walk or swim to Gaulding's Cay, a small island with a few casuarina trees. There is a place to park and shade is also available.
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Crandon Park Beach
Crandon Beach is one of Miami's greatest park treasures. A beautiful, sprawling campus of beaches and amenities, Crandon Park is more than a beach. At Crandon Park Beach on Key Biscayne, there's a Family Amusement Center, a Nature Center and even a place to rent cabanas. The beach remains the main attraction at the luscious and family-friendly Crandon Park. Gear up for a friendly game of beach volleyball or unpack your picnic and bring some supplies for the on-site grills. There's almost always a birthday party or event taking place somewhere at this site. At the south end of Crandon Park Beach, there are cabanas for rent. Cabanas have showers and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Cabana renters are assigned a parking space and exclusive picnic tables on the beach. It's fun to explore the various ecosystems at Crandon Park, including dunes, mangroves, coastal hammock and sea grass beds. The Crandon Park Nature Center is home to exotic plants, rare fish and wildlife, and Bear Cut Preserve, a natural Environment Study Area. Take a tour with a naturalist and explore all that this nature hotbed has to offer.