Mermaids have been a roadside attraction in Spring Hill, Florida since 1947 – yes, mermaids. At Weeki Wachee Springs State Park, you can watch the famous Hans Christian Anderson’s story of “The Little Mermaid” come to life.
Not only will you hear the tale of the mermaid who makes a deal with a sea witch to have legs like the prince she loves, only to have given away her beautiful voice. The mermaids perform underwater acts, including eating and drinking underwater.
The story behind the show is fascinating. Back in the 1940s, Newton Perry scouted out Weeki Wachee for new business, cleared out the spring of and invented a method of breathing underwater. He taught women how to swim with the hoses, smile and do tricks, such as eating and drinking under water, so it looked like they were living underwater. In 1947 he opened the first underwater mermaid show while viewers watched in an 18-seat theater that was submerged six feet below the surface. It became one of the most popular roadside tourist attractions back in the 1950s and the show is still running today.
Tickets to the mermaid show are included in the price of the Buccaneer Bay Waterpark and also includes a wildlife show where you can see some of Florida’s native animals, including alligators, snakes and exotic birds. Afterwards, you can enjoy a nice Iand river boat ride down the Weeki Wachee River you’ll have a chance to see bald eagles, mullet, cooter turtles, blue heron, wild turkey, deer, and colorful fish of all sizes. Each year the park also offers a don’t-miss holiday breakfast with Santa and a mermaid.
This is an extremely popular park and guests can be turned away if it gets to be too crowded, so keep that in mind when planning your trip. Prices for adults is $13; Child (Ages 6 – 12): $8; and children 5 and under are free. The Weeki Wachee Springs State Park is open every day until 5:30 p.m.
Spring Hill is less than an hour away from Tampa, Florida and only an hour-and-a-half from Orlando, Florida. If you’re interested in a trip to Spring Hill, Florida to see the mermaids, contact your travel agent.
Travel Makers MD