We had the good fortune of connecting with Ariana Perez and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ariana, what values matters most to you?
My business, Salty Soul Adventures, was founded with three values in mind: Exploration, Education, and Preservation. Environmental preservation is really the key value. Our mission is to encourage our guests to preserve ecosystems. We provide guests the opportunity to explore our local natural areas while offering an educational and fun experience. By keeping our tours small and personal, we give guests an intimate experience. We enjoy sharing our passion for nature with everyone. Our goal is to create awareness and empower guests to be active participants in conservation efforts. As part of our mission, Salty Soul Adventures also partners with various nonprofit organizations and local parks to help assist with natural area restorations. “In the end we will conserve only what we love; we will love only what we understand; and we will understand only what we are taught.” (Baba Dioum, 1968.)
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Salty Soul Adventures is all about passion, fun, and safety. We offer an array of guided adventures to individuals and groups. Our services include guided kayak, stand up paddleboard, kayak snorkel, bike, birding, and walking tours. Salty Soul Adventures is a mobile guided tour service. That means we launch from areas all over South Florida from Palm Beach down to the Florida Keys. This allows guests to choose a location close to them or choose a location best suited for their group’s paddling experience. Most of our tours are private which means guests get a more intimate experience. We even include digital photos of guests throughout the adventure with every tour. Our guides have been exploring Florida most of their lives and are certified Florida Master Naturalists with more than 10 years experience.
Since the pandemic began, we have adapted by providing a contactless booking procedure. Guests can pay and fill out their waivers online. Before, during, and after the tour, we provide hand sanitizer whenever needed. Masks are required and we always observe social distancing. Salty Soul Adventures also sanitizes all gear with an FDA approved cleaner after every use.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a weeklong trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Since I was born and raised in South Florida, I have some favorite places to share with friends when they travel here. Right off the plane our first stop is a local Pinecrest Bakery for some Cuban coffee and some delicious pastries. Then a paddleboard snorkeling tour from Key Biscayne. We can spend all day out there because there is so much wildlife and everywhere you look there are stunning views. Always pack a lunch and some drinks for days on the water. The next day we can do a walking tour of Little Havana which has a great history with lunch at Versailles Restaurant and dessert at Azucar Ice Cream shop. On another day we can go for an afternoon walking tour of Wynwood with lunch at the Taco Stand and maybe stop at Wynwood Brewing for some craft beers to refresh us after a day in the sun. Next up is a day in the Everglades including a bike tour of Shark Valley, lunch at The Pit BBQ, and then an airboat tour. On the last day, we relax on a hammock under a palm tree at North Beach Park in Hollywood which is quiet and peaceful. For lunch, take a walk down the Hollywood Broadwalk and have lunch at Florio’s of Little Italy followed by drinks. Before they leave, we can also stop by the Pelican Harbor Seabird Station for a tour with my friend Chris who is incredibly passionate about wildlife. We will make sure to leave a donation to support the cause and then head to the airport to see off my friend.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Christopher Scott Boykin of Pelican Harbor Seabird Station helped me partner with fantastic people who encouraged me to thrive in my element including himself. Roberto Icaza of Expedition South Florida has been a great partner and helped me grow along the way. Our working relationship is a great example of how local businesses thrive when we work together. Kristen Hoss of Youth Environmental Alliance has mentored and encouraged me to get out there to do great things. Finally, I could not be where I am without the love and support of my wife Amy and the rest of my family.