From springs to rivers, beaches, and lakes, there are plenty of ways to cool off in nature from the Florida heat. But if you’re a little weary of all the critters you’ll inevitably be sharing the waters with, we wouldn’t blame you. In that case, you’ll want to plan a trip to the Epperson Lagoon, a gorgeous spot near Tampa that combines all the modern comforts of manmade pools with Florida’s natural beauty.

Wesley Chappel's Epperson Lagoon is seven acres of crystal-clear turquoise waters and beachy fun. You can feed your inner thrill-seeker and romp through the inflatable water obstacle course, or even race down Slidezilla.

You'll also find a family-friendly section called Gasparilla Island, where you can wade into shallower waters or lounge on the sandy shores beneath swaying palm trees. Like a passport-free trip to the Maldives.

You can really take it easy and cruise over to the swim-up bar, or paddle around the dock on SUPs and kayaks.

If you're more into staying dry with a view, you can have a blast by checking out the VR experience that lets you skydive, snorkel, and even visit outer space.

The Reef offers tropical drinks, fresh food, and retail to shop through, or you can even rent the Peninsula Tiki by the hour for a more private setting.

You can frolic in the water from 10 a.m. to dark, but the bar will stay open for your enjoyment until 11 p.m.

General admission for adults is $24.95, while kayaks and SUP boards, tiki or cabana rentals, and aquabanas will have separate fees.

If you've been looking for a new place to cool off this summer, soak up all the watery fun and beachy relaxation at this modern-day oasis in Central Florida.

Epperson Lagoon

Price: $24.95

Address: 31885 Overpass Rd., Wesley Chapel, FL

Why You Need To Go: Lounge on the sand, soak by the bar, and have a tropical vacation without ever leaving Central Florida.


We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment and obey any local laws.


 


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