The entire sky along Florida's Space Coast is like one giant movie screen, regularly showing the story of rockets—some manned, some unmanned, others guided entirely by dreams. They launch gracefully towards the heavens, where they break through Earth's atmosphere and float out beyond it. It's a mesmerizing display, one that serves as the focal point for Space Coast River Tours's Rocket Tour. The Blue Dolphin, the company's 44-foot USCG-certified pontoon river boat, serves as the tour's mode of transportation. Its retractable roof pulls back to reveal unobstructed views of the sky above for all of its 49 passengers.
Captains Mark and Michele Anderson, who are both certified by the U.S. Coast Guard, have plenty to explore even when rockets aren't taking flight. Specialty tours are available at an additional cost. During the holidays, they show passengers the lights and decorations along residential canals in Sykes Creek, handing out some egg nog or hot cocoa to complete the experience. The Banana River Lagoon Tour, meanwhile, remains a daily feature. For two hours, the boat tours the Banana River and floats into the habitats of the area's many birds, dolphins, manatees, and gators.
Bikram Yoga on the Island's founders, Suzanne and Joe Elliott, draw inspiration from their students' physical progress and development each week, ensuring that each session addresses the needs of first-day students, casual practitioners, and lifelong yogis. Ten years of experience fuel Suzanne and Joe's work as instructors, with each tapping his or her encyclopedic knowledge to guide pupils through two breathing exercises and 26 poses. Along with a staff of instructors, the two founders demonstrate and describe the proper execution of each posture with the authority of an Olympic Twister medalist.
As students fold and unfold limbs, each movement helps promote healthy organ function by pushing freshly oxygenated blood throughout their entire bodies. Meanwhile, the studio's heating system helps them safely sink into each stretch and sweat out toxins by raising the temperature to 105 degrees with 40% humidity. After class, attendees can freshen up with the studio's indoor and outdoor shower facilities.
At each of five Surf and Ski Water Sports locations, staffers equip tourists and locals alike with ocean and river rentals and beach necessities. While some take advantage of boats and jet skis to glide along the water, others watch from atop surfboards or seated in beach chairs situated beneath the shade of giant umbrellas.
Carnival Cruise Lines entertains seafarers on a decorated vessel brimming with lively stage shows, upscale dining, buffets, and sweeping aquatic views. Kick back in the comforts of a spacious interior stateroom with a convertible king bed, full bathroom with shower, and closets roomy enough for stashing buffet leftovers. Vacationers can stretch their legs while dining on a rotating roster of food served three times daily before laughing the evening away at a comedy show.
The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex celebrates the past, present, and future of space travel with educational exhibits and hands-on activities for visitors of all ages. And as a reminder that the history contained here is still being written, the center displays a countdown clock marking off the seconds until the next scheduled launch.
The water's calm. Almost too calm. Nearly imperceptible ripples begin to form, soon evolving into bubbles reminiscent of a hair-raising monster movie. A figure erupts upwards, the water peeling away in sheets to reveal not a creature of the deep, but a person with their feet strapped into a strange device. The machine, called a Flyboard, projects two jets of water out from right beneath the rider's feet, causing her to soar through the air. This propulsion lends itself to acrobatics, helping riders perform tricks such as spins, flips, and dolphin-like dives from the air to the water and back again.
The owners of Jump Right In Flyboarding say such tricks are not hard to master. They started their company to give everyone a taste of this hard-to-describe, impossible-to-imitate water sport, and today they specialize in the sales, service, instruction and rentals of FlyBoards. With locations in Sebastian, Cocoa Beach, and Key Largo, they are some of the coast's most experienced operators.