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Clear Kayak Through Scenic Shell Key Preserve!

an island in the middle of a body of water

| Clear Kayaking At Shell Key Preserve |

Escape the ordinary! Weave through mangrove tunnels, enjoy white sand beaches and sandbars, and search for incredible marine-life at Shell Key Preserve!

Explore the natural beauty of Shell Key Preserve! It is a hidden gem on the very Southern tip of Pinellas County in the Tampa Bay Area – in a small, quaint town of Tierra Verde. Nearby you’ll find the historic Fort De Soto State Park and the pristine beaches of St Petersburg.

We launch our clear kayak tour of Shell Key Preserve from local waterfront seafood restaurant: Billy’s Stone Crab. It is a longstanding local hangout located right on the edge of the preserve. Fortunately, this allows us to launch directly into the beautiful waterways of Shell Key.

a group of people riding skis on a snowy surface

The first stop on our tour is in a mangrove tunnel (tide permitting) – where there is a natural canopy of mangroves, providing some beautiful shade, the opportunity to see a wide variety of fish including snook and sheep fish, and many diverse species of birds nestling in the trees.

Our next stop is at the beach! The beaches of Shell Key Preserve also do not have a public access unless by boat (or kayak!) – making them a true untouched paradise.  There is a natural inlet, Irma’s Pass, that was created by Hurricane Irma in 2017 through which the pristine water from the Gulf of Mexico flows into to the preserve. The clear water shines in the brilliant sunshine and the white sandy bottom brings out the blues and greens of the water. The beach is especially unique because of the quantity and variety of shells along the shoreline!

The tour ends with a paddle alongside Shell Key’s mangrove-lined coast, a bird sanctuary where we commonly see Great Blue Herons, pink Roseate Spoonbills, and Anhingas that will swim right along side your kayak!

Throughout the paddle – our guides make sure to get you safely launched, show you the hidden mangrove tunnels, help educate you about the environment, and ensure that you have a phenomenal time out on the water! We can’t wait to show you the beauty and hidden gems of Shell Key Preserve!



  • Hats
  • No shoes – we don’t allow shoes to be worn in the kayak but sandals/water shoes can be brought along for when we exit the kayaks along the tour.
  • Water (no glass or styrofoam is allowed on the waterway)
  • Swim Wear – you’ll love getting in the water along our stops at the beach and sandbars (tide dependent)!
  • Camera/Phone – we provide small dry bags for your phone, wallet, keys, etc!
  • Towel – best to leave these behind in your vehicle so you can dry off afterwards!
  • Change of clothes
  • NO PETS – unfortunately no pets are allowed at Shell Key Preserve by law of the State.
  • $1 for the toll prior to arriving at our launch location.