New Smyrna Beach, Florida, has scenic locales that are often described as "old Florida". On the beach side is the Atlantic Ocean, and on the mainland side is the Indian River, which make the town of New Smyrna Beach extraordinarily beautiful. The simplest of locations offer breathtaking scenery, and the convenient access to the Intra-coastal Waterway makes N.S.B. a boat lover's dream.
On the north causeway of N.S.B. on the mainland, is one of the best boat ramps, with direct access to the panoramic Indian River lagoon, with water routes that lead to the Atlantic Ocean. Most boat ramps are nothing worth writing about, they serve their purpose and get a boat and boater to their destination of choice: the water. But in N.S.B., there is no such thing as an average boat ramp, for at the N.S.B. North Causeway ramp, there is a small park setting, two fishing docks, bathrooms and more.
The parking lot is huge. It can fit most cars and big trucks hauling various sized boats. There are two ramps in one, and directly to the left of the area is a small pier and a channel, where small boats easily glide through. This is under the pedestrian bicycle path above that leads across the bridge to Flagler Avenue. To the right is another small dock, and open views of the beginning of the Indian River Lagoon, from the boat launch vantage.
There are signs in the boat ramp area that tell the history of the West Indian manatee, known to frequent the Indian River waters. I have seen the wild West Indian manatee up close at this location along the Indian River. There is whale information as well. Apparently in the winter months, the Indian River has had various whale sightings too.
Past the boat ramps, heading right is a small bathroom facility, and a lovely nature preserve type area, with more views of the beautiful lagoon and a small children's park. To the right of the park is a long, hidden fishing pier, that offers the best views, a wide open space on the Indian River, where fishers can cast their lines in and wave to the passing boaters, who often give a wave back, comparing catches.
This is one of the best spots to view the West Indian manatee, as well as dolphins, which are a normal sighting all along the Indian River. Now that I know of the wale's that frequent the local waters in the winter months, there is no doubt I will be at the pier with binoculars in hand. The boat launch has something for those who want to experience a nice old Florida park setting, not just seasoned boaters looking to cruise down the Indian River in style.
handicap ramps, handicap ramp, wheelchair ramps
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