Crystal River
Boat Tours & River Cruises

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Our most recommended Crystal River Cruises & Boat Tours

  • Orlando: Manatees Swim, Snorkel and Boat Day Tour

    1. Orlando: Manatees Swim, Snorkel and Boat Day Tour

    Swim and snorkel with one of the sea's most gentle creatures, the endangered Florida manatee. Visit beautiful Homosassa State Wildlife Park, and take an exhilarating airboat ride. This tour is an ideal opportunity for anyone seeking to escape Florida's predictable theme parks. Head to the picturesque Crystal River – home to the endangered “gentle giant of the sea,” the Florida manatee – where you can choose to snorkel or swim. If you are lucky, you may even get to interact with these beautiful creatures. At the very least, the boat excursion provides stunning, peaceful views of the natural Florida surroundings. After lunch, you'll enjoy a fully narrated airboat ride. You can also learn more about this southern state's wildlife from the knowledgeable tour guide. The remainder of the day includes a visit to one of Florida’s best kept secrets – Homosassa State Wildlife Park. Here, guests ...

    The boat team was great despite bad weather.they were safe,Made it enjoyable. The excursion bus team was great as well. They were informative and helpful. The change rooms at the manager facility need a roof. It was pouring rain and impossible to change from swimsuit into dry clothes.

  • Orlando: Swim with Manatees with Optional Breakfast & Lunch

    2. Orlando: Swim with Manatees with Optional Breakfast & Lunch

    The gentle manatees of the Crystal River await your arrival on this delightful day-long tour where you can swim with these curious creatures. Your day will begin with complimentary pickup from one of the key meeting points in Orlando, Kissimmee, Lake Buena Vista and Disney. You will then be whisked away to the picturesque Crystal River. Crystal River is home to the curious and endangered manatee. Also known as Sea Cows, these creatures are most definitely the gentle giants of the marine world. Here you have the chance to snorkel or swim in the clear blue waters. Manatees are curious creatures and will often come to greet those who choose to snorkel or swim. They may even roll over to be tickled! Those who prefer to stay above water may wish to simply sit back, relax and enjoy the natural surroundings. After lunch you will visit the beautiful Homosassa State Park, one of Florida’s bes...

    The Chinese buffet left a lot to be desired. The van driver was very informative & helpful. Mike our guide at the river was so kind and understanding. He made the swim with the manatees a special experience. The park was very informative and made for a nice afternoon.

  • Crystal River, Florida: 3-Hour Swim with Manatees

    3. Crystal River, Florida: 3-Hour Swim with Manatees

    Get back to nature and discover the home of the world’s largest population of endangered manatees in the winter on an adventure to Three Sisters Springs. Get the chance to interact with the curious, gentle giants in their natural habitat.  Learn all about the animals in a classroom-type setting and get tips for your snorkel tour to make the most of your day. Hear about "passive interaction" that ensures that the animals enjoy the experience just as much as you do! Then, journey to the estuary with a Coast Guard captain aboard a covered pontoon boat. Marvel at the wildlife around you, and get up close to the sea cows as they move slowly through the water. Head back to base camp to visit the one-of-a-kind gift shop and purchase unique souvenirs. Get tips on what to do in the Kings Bay area, along with directions from the well-informed staff to other local attractions and restaurants.

    Great trip. Felt safe. Crew and guide were personable and made sure we all had fun.

  • Homosassa: Gulf of Mexico Airboat Ride and Dolphin Watching

    4. Homosassa: Gulf of Mexico Airboat Ride and Dolphin Watching

    Glide through the saltwater marshes and shallow waters of the Homosassa River and Gulf of Mexico aboard a powerful airboat. Look for bottlenose dolphins and other wildlife in their natural habitat to reconnect with nature. Feel the speed beneath you as you twist and turn through the mangroves, canals, and backwaters. Access areas that other boats can't reach and encounter abundant wildlife off the beaten path. Marvel as your US Coast Guard Captain and guide safely pilots the boat at speeds of up to 50 miles per hour. Get an adrenaline rush as you traverse the waterways and soak up the natural beauty on all sides. Every day is different when it comes to the wildlife, but a morning ride is highly recommended if you hope to encounter animals in the wild. The diverse birdlife will truly amaze you, while West Indian manatees can sometimes be seen on a good day.

    Our guide, Irish Dave, was teriffic. Lots of knowledge of the river, mangroves, birds and sea life. Stopped to see about 20 sharks from hammerhead, black tip and tiger. All in all, I highly recommend Irish Dave.

  • Orlando: Manatee Encounter, Snorkeling, and Airboat Ride

    5. Orlando: Manatee Encounter, Snorkeling, and Airboat Ride

    Enjoy breakfast as you head out to the beautiful Crystal River area to start your snorkeling adventure. Explore the river and admire unique wildlife in its natural habitat. Learn about the magnificent manatee and have the opportunity to see them up close. Next is a guided visit to the Homosassa Springs State Park. Discover local wildlife, including the endangered Florida panther, black bears, red wolves, bobcats, alligators, and more. Learn about the park’s manatee rehabilitation program and stop at an underwater observatory built over the mouth of a spring. Enjoy a packed lunch before heading to the Withlacoochee River, to end your day with an exciting airboat ride. This area is another natural haven, where you can see more local wildlife. Feel the thrill of skimming over the water with an exhilarating trip in a flat-bottomed boat.

    We were picked up early punctually by an upbeat, enthusiastic driver who fed us a delicious breakfast and briefed us on our day. He seemed to realize that we wanted to eat and go back to sleep. We arrived at the office where we were to get our gear, and all went smoothly. Lacy and Whitney were our guides, and Chad was our boat captain. Lacy coached us on what we could expect once we got in the water and took us in for some practice. They all warned us that it was off season for the manatees and we might not find very many. Delightfully, they were mistaken. Manatees were below us and all around us. It was impossible not to touch them, although we'd been warned not to. We got back on the van for lunch and were on our way to the park and airboat ride, which were equally good. I would highly recommend this tour and these guides and will request them myself if I go back to Orlando.

  • Crystal River Small Group Swim with Manatee Tour

    6. Crystal River Small Group Swim with Manatee Tour

    Swim with manatees in the spring-fed King’s Bay Wildlife Refuge in Crystal River, home to the world’s largest population of the endangered creatures during the winter. Encounter these gentle giants in their natural habitat. Benefit from the services of a Coast Guard certified captain and in-water educator and photographer. Learn about the animals in a classroom-type setting and get tips to make the most of your day. Hear about passive interaction to make sure that the animals enjoy the experience just as much as you do! Then, suit up and board a covered pontoon boat to immerse yourself in the manatees' world. Be treated like royalty aboard the boat and see the wildlife refuge in style. Return to the facility at the end of your adventure and visit the one-of-a-kind gift shop! Hear about other local attractions and restaurants, and get answers to any questions you may have before you dep...

    We had so much fun. The Manatees are so massive and docile. Our tour guides Paige and Troy were so knowledgeable and great at spotting the manatees for us. Definitely recommend this tour.

  • Crystal River: Private Manatee Cruise

    7. Crystal River: Private Manatee Cruise

    Arrive at the marina and be fitted for wetsuits and gear followed by a short video about "Manatee Manners." Meet your captain and guide before beginning the cruise down the Indian River past the Archeological Park, Indian mounds, and St. Martin's Aquatic Preserve. Try to spot local birds such as egrets, herons, ospreys, bald eagles, and even golden eagles. You may also encounter river otters, wild pigs, deer, gators, and dolphins. Upon entering King's Bay, start looking for manatees. Examine the surface for their noses when they take a breath or their flat "footprints" from swimming in the shallow waters. Once manatees are located in a safe area, get geared up and enter the water to swim with them. Some will ignore you and just continue sleeping or eating, some will swim away, and the most curious ones will come over to meet you. Adhering to the Save the Manatee Club Guardian Guide Pri...

Other Sightseeing Options in Crystal River

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What people are saying about Crystal River

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 24 reviews

We were picked up early punctually by an upbeat, enthusiastic driver who fed us a delicious breakfast and briefed us on our day. He seemed to realize that we wanted to eat and go back to sleep. We arrived at the office where we were to get our gear, and all went smoothly. Lacy and Whitney were our guides, and Chad was our boat captain. Lacy coached us on what we could expect once we got in the water and took us in for some practice. They all warned us that it was off season for the manatees and we might not find very many. Delightfully, they were mistaken. Manatees were below us and all around us. It was impossible not to touch them, although we'd been warned not to. We got back on the van for lunch and were on our way to the park and airboat ride, which were equally good. I would highly recommend this tour and these guides and will request them myself if I go back to Orlando.

Our guide, Irish Dave, was teriffic. Lots of knowledge of the river, mangroves, birds and sea life. Stopped to see about 20 sharks from hammerhead, black tip and tiger. All in all, I highly recommend Irish Dave.

We had so much fun. The Manatees are so massive and docile. Our tour guides Paige and Troy were so knowledgeable and great at spotting the manatees for us. Definitely recommend this tour.

It was very organized. The guide and boat captain were very polite and laid back.

Amazing tour! The guide was knowledgeable and kind.