According to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Agency, nearly a million boats are registered to Florida residents. This should come as no surprise; the state is bordered by water on three sides and contains more than 30,000 lakes. If you’re fond of donning your captain’s hat and tuning into your Yacht Rock radio station, consider dropping anchor at one of these boat-friendly communities for active adults in Florida.
Royal Harbor – Tavares, FL
A waterfront community for 55+ adults, Royal Harbor is found on the banks of Little Lake Harris, which is part of a pristine chain of larger lakes in Central Florida’s Lake County. This community has a fishing pier and three boat ramps. It’s across the street from a marina, and there’s a lighthouse on the property, which can be seen in the distance as you’re approaching the neighborhood.
Royal Harbor is made up of 755 single-family homes in over 50 different models. Residents with boats have plenty of space to park them, and you may consider joining the yachting group or the fishing club. You’ll enjoy the clubhouse, which faces the water, the fitness center, and all of the natural splendor that’s found around the shores of Royal Harbor.
Tomoka Heights – Lake Placid, FL
A boat ramp to Lake Henry is one of the many reasons to buy a home at Tomoka Heights in Lake Placid. There is also a fishing dock and plenty of parking for recreational vehicles. Water activities are a big part of this intimate community for active adults. There are 455 single-family homes and attached villas in affordable price ranges. Construction on this 55+ community began in 1982, so it’s well-established and embraces its small-town vibe.
Residents stay busy on Lake Henry or in the clubhouse. Social activities include holiday parties, lunch groups, potlucks, and Saturday morning breakfasts. There’s shuffleboard, an outdoor pool, and plenty of community events happening in Tomoka Heights. It’s located near Sebring and an easy trip to Lake June-in-Winter, one of Florida’s newest state parks and a great place to enjoy the water.
MiraBay – Apollo Beach, FL
For instant access to Tampa Bay, consider buying a home in the dazzling all-ages community of MiraBay in Apollo Beach. With 1,700 single-family homes that range in size from 1,500 square feet to over 3,500 square feet, there’s a house in this gated community for every lifestyle and budget. And, it’s hard to get any closer to the water. With ramps, slips, and ocean access, launching your boat into the bay is something you can do without leaving your neighborhood.
Other reasons residents love their MiraBay homes are the on-site spa, the resort-style pool, and the MiraBay Clubhouse, which includes a patio for outdoor events and a state-of-the-art fitness center. Wolf Creek Nature Preserve is part of the community, where you can enjoy hiking, birding, and botany.
Arbor Lakes – Hernando, FL
Just outside of Ocala is Arbor Lakes, located on the Tsala Apopka Lake. This waterfront 55+ community contains a lot of outdoor recreational opportunities and provides residents with a boat ramp, a fishing pier, and a scenic boardwalk that winds through the property’s natural beauty and offers views of wildlife and nature preserves. There’s plenty of storage for boats and recreational vehicles.
Arbor Lakes is a collection of 370 single-family homes, and new home sites are still available if you’d like to build your own. An active homeowners' association takes care of most maintenance, and plans activities such as barbecues, shuffleboard tournaments, and tennis matches. Residents can enjoy the exercise room, the outdoor pool and patio, and the gazebo with beautiful views of Tsala Apopka Lake, also known as the Cove of the Withlacoochee River.
Spanish Main Yacht Club – Longboat Key, FL
For the best in Florida boating, it’s hard to beat Spanish Main Yacht Club. Located on Longboat Key outside of Sarasota, this 55+ community is an excellent option for active adults who love the water and spend as much time as possible on their boats. With a marina, boat docks, and easy access to the Gulf of Mexico and Sarasota Bay, it’s hard to get closer to the water without actually living on it.
Spanish Main Yacht Club has 212 single-family and attached homes, most of which have two bedrooms. Amenities include a private beach, kayak racks, a 40-slip marina, and other opportunities for outdoor fun such as shuffleboard courts, a pool, and plenty of space for parks and nature walks.