Cave Guides
Ultimate Guide to Ginnie Springs, Florida (Tours, Pricing, History, Map)

Ultimate Guide to Ginnie Springs, Florida (Tours, Pricing, History, Map)

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Ginnie Springs, a privately owned park, is on the south side of the Santa Fe River. There are accessible caverns with a limestone bottom, and the waters are cold and crystal-clear. It is a source of bottled spring water, and due to the clear waters of the spring, it is possible to view wildlife and the wreaths underneath. 

Ginnie Springs Cover Image

Ginnie Springs can get crowded on weekends and holidays as it is the only spring in Florida where drinking is allowed. It is to be noted that drinking is allowed as it is privately owned, unlike the other springs under Florida State Parks

History of Ginnie Springs

The site has been named Ginnie Springs to honor Virginia, a lady who once washed her laundry in the spring. The location came into prominence in 1974 when Jacques Cousteau dived in 1974 and praised the crystal-clear visibility of the waters. Before the European settlement, the Timucuan Indians had a stone tool manufacturing operation nearby on the Santa Fe River. Divers can still find treasures like arrowheads and pieces of broken flints. 

Ginnie Springs is a group of six springs and the surrounding 600 acres that the Wray family has owned since 1971. Ginnie Springs Outdoors LLC has been in operation since 1976. 

The modern history of the spring started in the middle of the 1900s when scuba diving was becoming popular. Divers dived to several caves, but between 1960 and 1975, many people lost their lives in the complicated underwater passageways. Ginnie was sold to the present landowner by ED Wright, one of the state’s largest landowners.

Ginnie Springs is well known in the dive community, but it has a black record as it has claimed 22 lives between 1960 and 1984. The park was opened to the public in 1976, and fees were USD 10. An iron gate was installed over the most dangerous part of the cave, and Bob Wray, the present owner, also built a dive shop. Very soon, Ginnie Springs became a nationally renowned dive spot and attracted thousands of divers every year. 

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Geological Cave Formations

Ginnie Spring basin is a bowl-shaped depression that measures over 100 ft across, which helps to connect the basin to the Santa Fe River. Ginnie Cavern is the chief attraction here, and its wide entrance can be found at the bottom of the basin. The cavern walls have highly reflective limestone, and divers will see geological formations unique to Florida Aquifer.

There is an amphitheater-sized area known as ‘Ballroom’ in the cavern. The Ballroom ceiling has a huge limestone that looks like a massive piece of Swiss cheese! 


Ginnie Springs wildlife

You can expect to see animals in and out of the springs, such as different kinds of turtles, manatees, alligators, snakes, birds, tortoises, and more. Just like any water body in Florida, there is a chance that you may see an alligator in the waters. If you do, swim out of the water as soon as possible and inform the park ranger. 

Is Ginnie Springs Haunted?

Ginnie Springs looks beautiful and deceitfully gorgeous, but it has a dark record. The spring holds the record of one of the highest numbers of cave-diving deaths in Florida. There are conflicting reports of how many lives have been lost within the caves.

The creepiest caves are in the Little Devil’s Eye & Devil’s Ear, which are part of the springs. The Devil’s Spring System is an intricate web of tiny crevices that divers must squeeze through exploration for more than 50 years. Unfortunately, many divers took their last breaths in these caves. Many divers have reported that they felt disoriented on their dive, and they say that it feels like a vortex. 

How Big is Ginnie Springs?

The diving caverns reach a maximum depth of 60 ft. 

Ginnie Springs Tours

There are three main dive sites.. 

Devil’s Spring System

It is the most popular and home to three springs – Devil’s Eye, Devil’s Ear, and Devil Spring, which regularly produce 80 gallons of water. Only certified cavern divers can enter the waters and carry dive lights. Devil’s Eye is a deep, round opening that is 20 ft across.

At the bottom, divers will enter the small but intricately decorated cavern. Certified divers can enter the cavern and only explore until the limit of their visibility using the available sunlight. Devil’s Ear is an opening that looks like a canyon and is located where Devil Spring joins the Santa Fe River. Water comes out from a cave at the bottom of the opening like a fire hydrant. 

Ginnie Ballroom

Ginnie Cavern is one of those sites that the experts deem safe for divers who do not have cave diving training. Certified cave divers of all experience levels are welcome here, and they can take lights with them to explore the underwater cavern. The light from the entrance fills the upper room of the cavern. The walls of the upper room are composed of light and reflective limestone, which adds to its natural beauty.

There is a large opening at the back of the upper room, which opens out to a massive area called the Ballroom. The Ballroom allows the divers to explore the various geological formations unique to Florida Aquifer. The Ballroom ceiling contains a great example of sponge work; there is a huge limestone Swiss cheese. At the NE corner of the Ballroom, a diver would come across a phreatic tube that has been beautifully carved. It is one of the best examples of underwater cave formation. 

Ginnie Springs Tour Prices and Discounts

The various fees are as follows – 


  • Adults (off-season) – USD 15
  • Adults (season) – USD 20
  • Children (5 to 12 years) – USD 5
  • Children (ages four and under) – Free

Scuba Divers 

  • Certified Full Cave Divers – USD 24
  • Other Certified Divers – USD 32
  • Annual Dive Pass – USD 399

Is Ginnie Springs Cold?

Ginnie Springs is always a constant 72 degrees F. When swimming at you may find it super cold! 

What to Wear?

Visitors who would be diving should carry a good wetsuit. You will also need good water shoes and a pair of quality goggles. 

Ginnie Springs Hours

  • Monday to Thursday – 8 am to 5 pm.
  • Friday and Saturday – 8 am to 8 pm.
  • Sunday – 8 am to 6 pm

What to Do at Ginnie Springs (Beside Tours)

If you do not like diving, you can indulge in other activities at Ginnie springs. Even if you are a diver, you can still enjoy the following fun activities! 


It is the most popular activity at Ginnie Springs. The tube run here is one-hour duration, one of the longest tube runs. It is important to note that you would be tubing on the Santa Fe River and not on the spring. 


Apart from tubing, one can also participate in kayaking, canoeing, and stand-up paddleboarding. However, since there is no drop-off service, you need to paddle upstream at the start. Kayaks, and stand-up paddleboards, can be rented here for USD 12 for 3 hours or pay USD 20 for 6 hours. 

Best Time to Visit Ginnie Springs

Many people reckon that Ginnie Springs is best visited during the summer months. So, if you are planning to camp there, you might need to make a reservation. However, unlike the other springs or parks in Florida, Ginnie Springs rarely fills, and there is no need to rush in here. 

How to Get to Ginnie Springs

Ginnie Springs is 15 minutes west of Interstate 75 and easily accessible from all major routes entering and exiting Florida. Visitors traveling to or from Gold Coast or the Florida Keys would find Ginnie Springs on their way. For more detailed directions to Ginnie Springs, you can click here

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Hotels near Ginnie Springs

Camping is permitted at Ginnie Springs and is one of Florida’s best places to camp. The charges for camping at Ginnie Springs depend on the time of the year and the type of campsite you want. The prices start from USD 22 for an adult USD 7 for a child. 

Full and partial hookups are offered at the campsite, and bathroom facilities are available here. Visitors are also allowed the provision of free camp if they agree to pitch their tent somewhere that is not a designated campsite, such as the banks of Santa Fe River. If you do not like camping, you can stay in any of the featured hotels near Ginnie Springs, such as High Springs Country Inn and Grady House B&B. 

Ginnie Springs Fun Facts

  • Located in Florida, it is unique as it is an “at your own risk” destination. 
  • There are no lifeguards at the springs.
  • Since there is no tour guide, you would require a map here to stay on course. 
  • There is a slim chance of seeing alligators in the water body. Don’t freak out; inform the park ranger. 
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Ginnie Springs Details 

  • Length: The diving caverns reach a maximum depth of 60 ft. 
  • Time Recommended: 3 to 4 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult
  • Kid-friendly: No
  • Dog-friendly: Not allowed
  • Fees: USD 15 or 20 per adult depending on the season
  • Hours: Mon to Thu – 8 am to 5 pm, Fri & Sat – 8 am to 8 pm, and Sun – 8 am to 6 pm 

Visiting Ginnie Springs

Do you need more information before visiting? Call (386) 454-7188 or email Ginnie Springs through the form for an information packet. 

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