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Cycle Boat Business Starting In Downtown Jacksonville

Kraken Cycleboats

The St. Johns River in downtown Jacksonville is about to get more lively.

Kraken CycleBoats, which is based in Tampa, is preparing to launch a pedal boat service in downtown Jacksonville on Friday, March 23.

The boat, which will be departing from the Friendship Fountain dock on the Southbank, features a large central bar area that people sit around and pedal. That in turn moves the boat up and down the St. Johns River in the downtown area.

The company is billing the excursions as pedal powered parties. Guests are allowed to bring alcohol, beverages and food aboard.

“We have ten pedal stations around the bar. So, actually when our passengers are pedaling, that is what is actually moving the boat. So it’s a little bit different experience,” said spokeswoman Alyssa Rhoades.

The boat also includes a large bench seat for those that prefer not to pedal or would like a break from pedaling, giving the boat a total guest capacity of 15.

The cycle boat will have a captain and deckhand and does have a motor to assist with navigating the river when needed. It also has two large coolers for BYOBs (Bring Your Own Bottle).

Credit Bill Bortzfield / WJCT News
The Kraken CycleBoat will be departing from the Friendship Fountain dock on the Southbank.

“We’ll be departing from the Friendship Fountain dock and then we will be doing 15 minute half-way stops, either at Intuition Ale or the Jacksonville Landing,” Rhoades said, adding that more stops might be added in the future.

Kraken CycleBoats is hoping to attract bachelorette, bachelor and birthday parties along with company parties and team building excursions as well as weekend get togethers with friends.

The Kraken CycleBoat is a 32-foot catamaran with a large paddlewheel in the back and includes a sound system for those that wish to bring along electric devices.

The tours will be approximately two hours long and are available seven days a week.

“Everything is a done deal with the city of Jacksonville and that type of thing. Everything’s ready to go. We’re basically just waiting to bring the boat there and do our final Coast Guard inspection,” Rhoades said.

Credit Kraken Cycleboats
The boat features a large bar area as guests pedal.

Unlike theSt. Johns River Taxi, the Kraken CycleBoat will be by reservation only, with prices starting at $35 per person and going as high as $525 to reserve the full boat on weekends.

In addition to Tampa and Jacksonville, Kraken CycleBoats also operates in Jupiter and Rhoades said the company may expand into other areas in the future.

Reservations and more information is available at

Bill Bortzfield can be reached at, 904-358-6349 or on Twitter at @BortzInJax.

Bill joined WJCT News in September of 2017 from The Florida Times-Union, where he served in a variety of multimedia journalism positions.