Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring – Williston, Florida

Have you ever wanted to travel back in time and explore prehistoric landscapes? Well, you can do just that at Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring. This unique natural wonder is a sight to behold, with crystal clear water, ancient rock formations, and a rich history that dates back millions of years.

The Devil’s Den is a popular destination for divers and snorkelers, who come to explore the depths of the spring and discover the fascinating marine life that calls it home. From giant catfish to rare turtles and even the occasional manatee, there is no shortage of underwater wonders to discover.

This hidden gem also offers a variety of activities for nature lovers, including hiking, camping, and even a chance to interact with wildlife.

But the Devil’s Den is more than just a natural wonder – it is also steeped in history and mythology. Legend has it that the spring was once the home of a devil who would lure unsuspecting travelers into its depths. Today, visitors can explore the nearby museum to learn more about the fascinating history and folklore of the Devil’s Den.

Whether you are a nature enthusiast, a history buff, or simply looking for a unique and unforgettable experience, Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring is a must-see destination that should be at the top of your travel list. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring and everything you need to know before planning your trip.

Devil's Den Pre-Historic Spring
Step into a prehistoric wonderland at Devil’s Den Spring

Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring is a popular diving spot because of its unique features, such as the ancient rock formations that date back to prehistoric times, and the natural beauty of the spring. The spring has been compared to an African watering hole, making it a breathtaking and unforgettable sight.

When visitors first arrive at Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring, they may be surprised at the unique features of this underground spring. The spring itself is approximately 54 feet deep, with a maximum diameter of 120 feet. The water level is constantly changing, forming a solution hole at the surface.

At Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring, visitors can enjoy diving and swimming in warm water with a constant 72-degree spring water temperature. This temperature remains the same throughout the year, giving visitors the opportunity to enjoy this natural spring regardless of the season.

The reason why the spring water always remains at 72 degrees is due to the insulating effect that the underground soil provides. The soil and rock formations surrounding the spring act as a natural barrier, preventing any extreme fluctuations in temperature that could be caused by changes in weather and climate.

Devil’s Den Spring Location

Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring is nestled in Williston, Levy County, Florida. The location is ideal for visitors from nearby cities seeking an amazing water adventure. Devil’s Den is situated within driving distance of popular Florida cities such as Gainesville (30 miles), Ocala (27 miles), and Crystal River (47 miles). This makes it a perfect day trip destination for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life.

History of the Spring

Devil’s Den has a rich history that dates back to prehistoric times. The area was once home to various species of prehistoric animals, including mammoths, saber-toothed tigers, and giant sloths. The remains of these animals can still be found in the surrounding area, with animal skeletons being discovered from time to time.

In the past, Devil’s Den was an important source of water for settlers and farmers in the area. They relied on the spring to provide them with clean and fresh water for their daily needs.

Thankfully, the current owners of Devil’s Den have taken steps to protect the spring and maintain its natural beauty. They have invested in sustainable practices to conserve the water supply and ensure that it remains clean and pure for future generations

In addition to protecting the water supply, the owners of Devil’s Den have also taken steps to preserve the natural habitat of the surrounding area. This includes planting native vegetation and creating habitats for local wildlife. By doing so, they are helping to maintain the delicate balance of the ecosystem and protect the biodiversity of the area.

Over the years, Devil’s Den has hosted many notable events and milestones. It has been the filming location for several movies and documentaries that showcase the natural beauty of the spring.

Activities to Enjoy at Devil’s Den

Devil's Den Spring Diving
Experience the thrill of snorkeling and diving in the crystal clear waters of Devil’s Den Spring

Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring is a hidden gem that offers visitors a chance to experience the beautiful water and stunning natural beauty of Florida Springs. Whether you’re looking for a refreshing swim in a swimming hole or an amazing time exploring the cavern system, Devil’s Den has something for everyone.For those seeking an underwater adventure, Devil’s Den offers both scuba diving and breath-hold diving. Above the water, Devil’s Den is like a theme park for nature lovers. Swimmers can enjoy the cool, refreshing water of the swimming hole. And for those looking for a break from the freshwater springs, Devil’s Den boasts acres of gardens to explore.

Scuba Diving Requirements

If you’re heading to Devil’s Den for some underwater exploration, it’s important to be well-prepared with the necessary scuba diving equipment. All visitors must have basic scuba gear, including a snorkeling mask, fins, buoyancy control device, regulator, and tanks. Dive buddies are also required, as safety is a top priority at Devil’s Den.

Before exploring the shallow spots, it is mandatory that all guests have a minimum scuba diving certification. The minimum requirement is an Open Water Certification or its equivalent. A mandatory refresher lesson is required for guests who haven’t dived in more than six months. To dive beyond the shallow cavern zone, visitors must have the Advanced Open Water Certification or its equivalent.

It’s important to note that there is an age restriction for diving in the cave system. Guests under the age of 18 must have a parent or legal guardian present. For anyone planning to visit Devil’s Den and scuba dive, planning ahead is crucial. Make sure to obtain any necessary water certifications ahead of time to avoid disappointment.

Water Entry and Exit Points

At Devil’s Den Spring, the water entry and exit points are of utmost importance, as they serve as the only means of access to the underground cavern. It’s crucial to know precisely where you can safely enter and exit the spring, as the stairs leading into the cave are slippery, tight, and narrow, making it challenging to maneuver.

To access the enchanting underwater world of Devil’s Den, you need to pay for scuba diving or snorkeling and have the right gear, as only certified divers and snorkelers are allowed inside. Before entering into the cave system, all visitors must obtain a color-coded wristband system that controls access to the cave. The wristbands signify which level of certification you have, allowing for easy identification by staff.

A dive platform is located near the entrance to the cave and serves as a convenient spot for divers to gear up before entering the cave system. It’s also a great place to adjust to the water temperature, which can feel chilly on cold winter mornings, so make sure to bring a wetsuit.

Water Temperature Range & Visibility

At Devil’s Den Spring, the water temperature is always a refreshing 72 degrees, which means you can enjoy the crystal-clear aquamarine water even in the colder months.

However, if you’re planning on spending an extended amount of time in the water, especially during winter, it’s recommended that you wear a wetsuit of at least 3mm to avoid getting too cold. This is particularly important for those who have lower body fat, children, and the elderly, who lose heat faster and are more susceptible to hypothermia.

The visibility of the water at Devil’s Den Spring depends on several factors, including weather conditions, water level changes, and the number of people swimming in the water. Clear skies and calm conditions usually result in better visibility, while rain can stir up sediment and reduce visibility. If the water level changes, it can also affect visibility, as water currents move the sediment around, making it difficult to see. And if there are many people swimming around, it can also reduce visibility due to the disturbance of sediments in the water.

Types of Dives Offered

Devil’s Den Spring offers a range of dive experiences that cater to different skill levels, from beginners to experienced divers. Cavern diving is a popular option for those who are just starting. During the cavern training dive, you’ll explore a shallower part of the cave with a guide. It’s an excellent way to test your skills, get comfortable with scuba equipment, and experience the unique underground environment.

For more experienced divers, Devil’s Den offers cave diving in the karst cavern. This dive takes you beyond the cavern and into the depths of the underground cave system. But beware, cave diving is an advanced form of scuba diving that requires special training, experience, and equipment.

If you’re looking for a unique and thrilling experience, consider a night dive. Devil’s Den offers this type of dive where you can explore the cave after dark. You’ll need to bring your own dive light as the cave is pitch black once you’re submerged in water.

The entire dive experience is designed to last no more than 90 minutes, ensuring that you have a safe and enjoyable experience.

Facilities and Amenities

Devil's Den Spring Facilities
Relax and unwind in the rustic charm of Devil’s Den Spring’s cozy cabins and modern amenities

Visitors to Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring will be pleased to find a range of facilities and amenities to enhance their experience. These include restrooms, showers, and changing rooms, which are all clean and well-maintained. There is also a picnic area with tables and grills, allowing visitors to bring their own food and make a day of it.

For those who prefer not to bring their own equipment, Devil’s Den offers rentals of snorkeling gear, scuba diving gear, and wet suits. There is also a dive shop on site, selling a range of equipment and souvenirs.

Accommodations Nearby

Devil's Den Spring Accommodation
Stay in comfort surrounded by natural beauty at Devil’s Den Spring lodging

For a memorable stay near Devil’s Den Spring, there are various R.V parks and tent campgrounds available, offering affordable accommodation costs with reduced rates for weekly and monthly stays. These campsites are perfect for those who love the great outdoors and want to immerse themselves in nature. In addition, cabins with heating, air conditioning, and full amenities are also available for those who prefer a more comfortable stay.

It’s important to note that there may be lodging tax applicable in the surrounding areas. However, the affordable rates make up for it. If you prefer traditional hotel options, nearby cities like Ocala and Gainesville offer a range of hotels. Hilton Ocala and Aloft Gainesville are popular choices for many visitors.

With so many accommodation options, it’s important to plan ahead and book in advance during the busy season to secure your preferred stay. Whether you choose an R.V park, tent campground, cabin, or traditional hotel, you will be able to enjoy all that Devil’s Den Spring has to offer.

Nearby Attractions

Devil's Den Nearby Attractions
Discover the best of Florida’s natural wonders with a visit to Devil’s Den Spring and nearby attractions

Don’t miss out on nearby attractions after your Devil’s Den Spring adventure. Visit nearby natural springs like Ginnie Springs, Glen Springs, Silver Springs, and Ichetucknee Springs State Park for aquamarine waters perfect for swimming or snorkeling. Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park is a must-visit for native Florida wildlife. Rock Springs Run Reserve, Royal Springs, and Suwannee Springs offer stunning waterfalls and steep limestone cliffs. Buccaneer Bay Water Park is perfect for a fun family day out. Explore underground caverns at Ginnie Springs and Leon Springs for fascinating geological formations and diverse flora and fauna. Wachee Springs State Park features a natural swimming pool, river, and educational exhibits on endangered wildlife. There are endless nearby attractions to explore in Florida.

How much does Devil’s Den cost?

Devil’s Den Spring’s cost depends on activities chosen. Viewing deck is free, but admission fees start at $38 for snorkelers and certified scuba divers. Non-certified divers need a dive buddy for an additional $15. Rental fees apply for scuba gear. Bring your own food and equipment to save money. Tent camping options available for budget-friendly accommodation. Check website for fee changes and enjoy your adventure at Devil’s Den!

Best Time to Visit Devil’s Den

The best time to visit Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring depends on what you’re looking for. If you want to avoid large crowds, it’s best to visit during the weekdays rather than weekends. The park is open from 8am to 6pm every day, but the early mornings tend to be less busy and offer better opportunities for wildlife sightings.

If you’re interested in snorkeling or diving, the best time to visit is during the summer months when the water is warmer and clearer. This is also the time when the park hosts night dives, which offer a unique and exciting experience. However, keep in mind that the summer months can also be more crowded and may require advanced reservations.

For those who enjoy hiking and exploring the park’s trails, the fall and winter months offer cooler temperatures and less humidity. This is also a great time to see the changing colors of the surrounding foliage. However, water temperatures may be too cold for swimming during these months.

Weather Forecast

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Stay Safe

Safety is paramount while exploring Devil’s Den. Underwater exploration comes with inherent risks, from disorientation to cuts and scrapes. It’s essential to understand and accept these dangers, staying vigilant of reckless behavior and reporting it immediately. Watch out for currents, wear non-slip shoes, and keep equipment in good condition. Take safety seriously to fully appreciate Devil’s Den’s beauty and wonders.

Devil’s Den Florida Travel Guide

Bottom Line

In conclusion, Devil’s Den Prehistoric Spring is truly a magical place that will transport you back in time. Whether you’re a seasoned diver or just looking for a unique and unforgettable experience, this natural wonder is not to be missed. So pack your bags, grab your gear, and get ready to explore the depths of Devil’s Den—Florida’s hidden gem.

Local Information

Address: 5390 NE 180th Ave, Williston, Florida 32696, United States
GPS: 29.407044, -82.476105
Phone: 352 528 3344