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Paradise Springs - Spring - Ocala FL


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Just outside of Ocala, this huge Cavern/Cave has a giant Whale bone, and some sand dollar fossils on the walls. Did I say this cavern was gigantic, I mean gigantic. Open water divers welcome.... 

Paradise Springs is actually a sinkhole that is privately owned and operated. The current owner purchased the land from a family member that was not using the sink. The sink is now open to the public and admission in July 2002 was $27 to scuba dive. Air fills were $5 a tank. Depths here reach 140 ft. Upon entering the water, a large cavern is encountered. At about 20 ft, you follow a large tunnel down at a 90 degree angle. Open water divers should stop at 99 ft., where they’ll see a sign warning them "prevent your death." After 99ft. you loose all surface light and enter a small shaft that continues down to 140 ft. Visibilty is generally good. Careless divers make it worse. Some fossils can be seen in the walls of the cavern.

Check out the Youtube video at
youtube.com/watch?v=5uo67BRuae8

Comments

Kevin_Z - 2/04/2018 4:15 PM
Anyone want to go this coming weekend? 2-11-18
davidmgf - 2/05/2017 4:19 AM
I went scuba diving here on 12/31/2016. Average viz: 41-50ft/12-15m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
RcDyno - 10/13/2016 1:37 PM
Rating Added: 4
Very nice place in the middle of nowhere. Great dive the only drawback was my weights I left on a ledge topside that "dissapered" while I was diving.
Airworks - 9/04/2016 10:45 AM
Two buddies and I drove 11 hours to visit both the Blue Grotto and Paradise Springs.

PS is a beautiful dive site, with lush fauna and cool prehistoric artifacts embedded within the cave walls. You’ll also see bluegill and catfish. The nooks and crannies are excellent places to practice "tight squeeze" maneuverings.

To make the ascent more fun, I slowly "crawled" up the ceiling upside down and took a closer look at the variety of embedded objects (large sand dollars, etc.). There were several air pockets, so I removed my second stage a couple times to breathe in the air! Very cool.
mangoman1 - 7/09/2016 12:50 PM
I went scuba diving here on 7/8/2016. Average viz: 91-100ft/28-30m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
3 great dives on a very hot summer day. The cooler water felt fantastic and we were the only 3 divers all day so viz was perfect!
mangoman1 - 5/14/2016 4:10 PM
I went scuba diving here on 5/13/2016. Average viz: 91-100ft/28-30m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
3 great dives with 3 other divers that communicated and worked very well together. Only 2 other divers at the site all day so the viz was excellent on all dives!
mangoman1 - 4/30/2016 9:34 AM
I went scuba diving here on 4/29/2016. Average viz: 51-60ft/16-18m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
mangoman1 - 3/01/2016 8:38 PM
I went scuba diving here on 2/29/2016. Average viz: 101-110ft/31-34m. Water temp: 66-70°F/19-21°C.
mangoman1 - 12/30/2015 7:33 PM
I went scuba diving here on 3/11/2015. Average viz: 91-100ft/28-30m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
mangoman1 - 12/01/2015 10:08 PM
I went scuba diving here on 8/29/2015. Average viz: 101-110ft/31-34m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
Cheshirecat - 10/19/2015 6:15 AM
Rating Added: 4
I dived here on 10/18/15. This spring is located on private property. Entry fee is $30 per diver. Vis was easily 60-80 ft. Bottom is covered with silt and requires good buoyancy skills. There are a lot of fossils on the walls and ceiling. They’re not easy to identify without some close inspection, so make sure you save some air for exploration of the upper area of the cavern. Bring a light and a spare. I will definitely visit this site again.
Aquabot - 10/18/2015 5:06 PM
Rating Added: 5
I loved this Dive. I don’t recommend diving here if you have poor buoyancy skills.
xracr96 - 8/23/2015 6:37 PM
I went scuba diving here on 8/2/2015. Average viz: 51-60ft/16-18m. Water temp: 76-80°F/24-27°C.
SantaFeSandy - 3/11/2015 3:24 PM
I went scuba diving here on 3/11/2015. Average viz: 91-100ft/28-30m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
Absolutely beautiful day for a private dive!!! Thank you Jen & Curt for gracing Eric and me with the opportunity to dive your gorgeous spring in a tropical setting. It was nice to be able to practice running a line in a low flow setting, in addition to it being a great day for exploring Paradise more thoroughly as well.
dalehall - 7/21/2014 6:23 AM
Went there on 13 July 14. Nice place. Not very crowded for an 85 degree, sunny, Sunday afternoon. A nice place to get some good bottom time. There is a training platform and you can get 100 feet before the cave system starts. Price is now $30 per diver.
Here is a video from our day there:
youtube.com/watch?v=nPIdKqIrriY
SantaFeSandy - 6/27/2014 3:13 PM
I went scuba diving here on 6/26/2014. Average viz: 81-90ft/25-27m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
Gorgeous, simply beautiful day and dives. See the images at flickr.com/photos/santafesandy/sets/72157645375308072/
djkobra81 - 11/17/2013 7:58 AM
I went scuba diving here on 11/16/2013. Average viz: 91-100ft/28-30m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
Excellent dive. Definitely need a light as there is no visible light after 65 feet.
Scotty4244 - 11/05/2013 4:40 PM
Rating Added: 4
Had fun.
Bonnie427 - 10/21/2013 8:48 PM
Rating Added: 4
Was a neat dive. 100’ down the cavern. Bring a good light.
floridaray33 - 9/16/2013 9:59 AM
Rating Added: 5
beautiful dive site. bring flash light, and bail out bottle.

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