Scuba Diving Devil’s Den
Jason Daniel Shaw
DEVIL’S DEN – FLORIDA
One of the most spectacular spots to visit in Central Florida has nothing to do with a mouse or a theme park – it is a hole in the ground – literally. The collapsed sink hole affectionately know as the Devil’s Den has increased in popularity of the last few years, as many sites have, due to Instagram. It is fed by a natural spring and therefor the water temperature is 72 degrees year-round. On cold winter mornings, steam can be seen rising from the hole in the ground, giving the sink hole its name – Devil’s Den.
SCUBA DIVING DEVIL’S DEN
The brilliant blue color of the crystal-clear water and the natural light streaming in through the collapsed hole is what makes this such a sought-after photo opportunity. However, you can only enter the den if you are snorkeling or scuba diving. If you are snorkeling, you will only get to see part of the cavern since it shaped like an upside down mushroom, extending out below the waterline. There are many classes that use this as part of their scuba curriculum so it can be crowded form time to time but it is always worth a visit.
The narrow entrance to the den leads you down a set of stairs that are just wide enough for one person at a time. At the bottom of the stairs is a submerged platform that will allow you a place to don your gear and quickly adjust to the cool water. Depending on the water levels, there are also additional platforms and stairs that you may or may not be able to utilize.
It gets dark as you sink below the surface of the water and into the depths of the cavern so a dive torch is required. Although there isn’t much life in the sinkhole, you will see a few fish and a possible turtle. There are also quite a few giant boulders that make it a bit of an adventure to get around. You may even come across the entrance to the cave system. This is off-limits, though. The cave has a maximum depth of 54 feet and the fresh water makes it a refreshingly unique dive.
WHAT ELSE TO KNOW DEVIL’S DEN
The cost to snorkel at the Devil’s Den is $15 – $20, depending on the day. Rental equipment for snorkeling is available for $10. Scuba diving is $38 and a full set of rental equipment is available for an additional $40. You can also rent pieces individually as well as get air refills for $8. There is also camping on site, either in tents, your RV or in their cabins. Make sure to check their website for the most up-to-date information.