Spring Break Activities Without Large Crowds - Boating, Fishing & More

October 5th 2023
Tripshock News
Spring Break Activities Without Large Crowds - Boating, Fishing & More

Spring break across the country is known for its large groups of people congregating at the beach for a weekend of sun and shenanigans. Spring break, however, is not only for college kids looking for a good time, but also for families looking to take their kids to the beach, couples looking for a romantic getaway, solo travelers looking for a memorable experience, and those who simply do not want to expose themselves to crowds so they don’t return back from break with a cold or the flu.

While the stereotypical spring break may not accommodate the latter demographic, there are still options. Florida is also home to plenty of activities that get you away from the crowds and closer to a serene and sunny beachside vacation. If this sounds like you, check out the top spring break activities without crowds, and make this spring break the best one yet!

Table of Contents

  • Enjoy the Beach
  • Fishing
  • Helicopter Tours
  • Jet Ski Rentals and Tours
  • Kayak and Paddleboard Rentals
  • Pontoon Boat Rentals
  • Snorkeling and Scuba Diving



Enjoy the Beach


the beach in panama city beach florida

Whether you’re visiting from across the country, or enjoying your Northwest Florida staycation, visiting the beaches in beautiful Florida is a must


Hitting the beach is a spring break and summer staple. Building a sandcastle, getting a tan, swimming in the Gulf Coast’s clear, emerald water is what draws thousands of visitors to the area year after year. While beaches behind popular spring break hot spots might be completely packed, there’s a way to get around that. Next time you’re avoiding large crowds during spring break in Panama City Beach, try checking out one of these less populated beaches instead:

  • St. Andrews State Park
  • Shell Island
  • Rosemary Beach
  • Carillon Beach
  • Camp Helen State Park

Another way to enjoy a private coastal experience is by organizing a beachside bonfire! Beach bonfires are fun for the whole family, and one of the best ways to beat large crowds during spring break.

Beach bonfires can also be set up by a bonfire company. Not only are they fun, but most bonfire packages include the following items for your convenience, so all you have to do is show up:

  • County Fire Permit
  • Fire bowl
  • Firewood
  • Setup and Breakdown
  • Tiki Torches

Beach bonfires are also pretty customizable. With multiple packages available, finding the one best for your group is a cinch! Other packages may include perks like chairs, tables, s’mores, and more!




red fish caught in panama city beach florida

Angler shows off her giant Redfish caught inshore on an exciting Florida fishing charter


Fishing is another great spring break activity without large crowds, and another Florida staple. Hop aboard a private fishing charter and set out to reel in a keeper! Private charters will typically hold from 4-6 passengers, the captain, and deckhand. With inshore and offshore charters to choose from, there’s a charter for beginners and experienced anglers alike. If you decide to book an inshore fishing charter, these are the fish you will most likely target:

  • Black Drum
  • Redfish
  • Sheepshead
  • Speckled Trout
  • Flounder
  • Catfish

If the smooth and calm inshore waters of the bays, bayous, and inlets lack a certain amount of excitement for you, you may want to consider heading offshore and booking a once-in-a-lifetime deep sea fishing charter! This is where you head miles offshore into the Gulf of Mexico, and will usually target one of the following:

  • Snapper
  • Grouper
  • Amberjack
  • Triggerfish
  • Mackerel
  • Cobia

Fishing charters are great for travelers as most will include everything you need like bait, tackle, fishing licenses, and more. If renting your own fishing poles and fishing from the beach, a local pier, or a dock is more your style, that’s okay, too! You will just want to make sure you have the proper fishing license and gear. Below is important information regarding fishing licenses in Florida:


saltwater and freshwater fishing license prices and information


As always, preparedness is key when it comes to making travel plans or arrangements. If you know you are wanting to go fishing when in Florida, it is recommended to go over the rules and regulations set out by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission before starting your spring break festivities. If you’re looking to book a fishing trip during spring break, check out a list of awesome Fishing Charters in Panama City Beach including rates, reviews, and availability.

{Read Reviews & Book Panama City Beach Fishing Charters Online}


Helicopter Tours


helicopter tour in panama city beach florida

One traveler explains in a recent Traveler Story that flying in a helicopter is an incredible experience even if you are afraid of heights


Fly high in the sky and get a bird’s eye view of the Florida beach from an exhilarating helicopter tour! Be sure to look out for your beachside condo, pods of dolphins, turtles, sharks, stingrays, and more. With plenty of different tours to choose from varying in distance and duration, choosing the one that works best for you and your schedule is easier than ever!

Check out the different Panama City Beach helicopter tours available, below:

  • Introduction Tour: Approximately 5 miles
  • Miracle Tour: Approximately 10 miles
  • Shark Run: Approximately 16 miles
  • Run to the Pass: Approximately 22 miles
  • Shell Island Tour: Approximately 28 miles
  • Shell Island and Breakfast Point Tour: Approximately 36 miles

Helicopter tours require a minimum of two passengers to depart, and have a maximum of three passengers. These trips are especially fun for couples looking for a romantic adventure, and families looking to share an incredible experience. This makes for a sure fire way to have fun during spring break without large crowds and lines to make your way through.

{Read Reviews & Book Panama City Beach Helicopter Tours Online}


Jet Ski Rentals and Tours


jet ski rentals in panama city beach florida

Glide across Florida’s crystal-clear water on a fast and fun jet ski rental


For the thrill-seekers and adrenaline junkies out there, this one’s for you! Jet ski rentals allow you the freedom to slide, glide, and make a splash as you explore the emerald waters of the Gulf Coast! Spend all day on your exciting jet ski rental, just an hour, or anywhere in between, it’s completely up to you!

Accommodating one, two, or three passengers, jet ski rentals are a great spring break activity to beat the heat and the crowds.

Jet Ski tours are also available in most Florida beach communities for your wave-running pleasure! Follow a local guide in search of dolphins, sea turtles, and other amazing marine life.

See the city from a completely different perspective as your guide lets you in on some local secrets, then zoom off into the horizon for some free time on your jet ski; the best of both worlds! Explore the waters around Panama City Beach, including the legendary Shell Island, and elevate your vacation with a jet ski rental or tour.


Kayak and Paddleboard Rentals


kayaking in panama city beach florida

Take it slow and steady and become one with nature on a Panama City Beach kayak rental


Kayak and paddleboard rentals are the perfect way to immerse yourself in the area’s natural beauty. Get up close and personal with local wildlife like dolphins, stingrays, and sea turtles, and take it slow as you paddle through crystal-clear waters. With multiple options available as far as kayak and paddleboard rentals and tours go, choosing the best option for you has never been easier. Choose from one of the following and get out on the water, today:

  • Standard Kayak Rental
  • Hobie Kayak Rental
  • Standard Paddleboard Rental
  • Hobie Paddleboard Rental
  • Paddleboard Tour
  • Kayak Tour
  • Fitness Kayak or Paddleboard Tour

For those looking to take it slow and ride in style, renting a kayak or paddleboard is an ideal option. This spring break activity is the perfect way to escape the masses and get some one-on-one time with Mother Nature herself!

{Read Reviews & Book Panama City Beach Paddleboard Tours Online}


Pontoon Boat Rentals


pontoon boat rental in panama city beach fl

Bring your favorite people along and explore the bay on a pontoon rental


In Florida, you can literally just hop on a boat rental and drive away from the spring break mayhem taking over the beach. Pontoon rentals are a fun and exciting spring break activity without large crowds, that allows you to see the area in a whole new light. Most pontoons will allow 10-12 passengers, so you can bring your favorite people along for the ride! Pontoon rentals will include the following for your convenience:

  • Stereo
  • Instruction
  • Life Vests
  • Fuel
  • Swim Ladder
  • Safety Gear
  • Gas

Book a Pontoon Boat Rental in Panama City Beach to give you the ability to explore areas not accessible by land. Be sure to check out Grand Lagoon, take a trip over to Shell Island, and visit St. Andrew’s Bay during your next pontoon rental!

{Read Reviews & Book Panama City Beach Pontoon Boat Rentals Online}


Snorkeling and Scuba Diving


scuba diving in panama city beach fl

One diver makes his way down into the depths on a scuba diving charter trip with Dive Locker in Panama City Beach


Florida beaches as a whole are so much more than meets the eye. Just below the surface, literally, is an underwater wonderland just waiting to be explored! With man-made reefs, amazing wildlife, clear waters, and more, you never know what you’ll see when you look just below the surface.

This is just one reason why scuba diving is the perfect spring break activity to avoid large crowds. Head out to sea with a small group and take the plunge to discover the magical mysteries that lay in the Gulf Coast waters. With different tours catering to different skill levels, there’s a dive trip for both the novice and experienced diver. Since diving is a more intense activity, please check out the restrictions below before booking your dive tour:

  • Participants must be in good health with no major health conditions
  • Participants must be at least 10 years old, with a parent or guardian available to sign a waiver for anyone under 18
  • Expectant mothers should not participate
  • Those who dive must wait at least 12 hours after the dive before flying

Not ready to dive that deep into the ocean blue? That’s okay, too! PCB Florida offers plenty of snorkeling trips for all ages. With most tours including snorkel gear and instruction, all you have to do is show up and prepare to be dazzled! Many snorkeling companies only offer small group snorkel tours, making this another great option for those looking to avoid large crowds.



No matter how you decide to spend your spring break, you can’t go wrong when doing so at one of Florida’s many beautiful beaches. With so many spring break activities without large crowds, there is something for every type of spring breaker in the sunshine state!

From flying high in the sky on helicopter tour, to diving way down below on a scuba diving excursion, every age and interest is covered when spending spring break in Florida.

Check out a full list of things to do in Panama City Beach, FL, to find all available tours including small group tours and rentals.



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