Water activity

Crystal River Small Group Swim with Manatee Tour

4.9 / 5

49 reviews

Activity provider: River Ventures USA

Crystal River Small Group Swim with Manatee Tour

Activity provider: River Ventures USA
Likely to sell out

From US$ 99.64 per person

Likely to sell out

Enjoy a high-end experience at an affordable price and explore the home of manatees aboard a luxury pontoon boat. Embark on a 3-hour cruise through King's Bay Wildlife Refuge and encounter the gentle giants up close and personal.

About this activity

Free cancellation
Cancel up to 24 hours in advance to receive a full refund
Reserve now & pay later
Keep your travel plans flexible—book your spot and pay nothing today.
Covid-19 precautions
Special health and safety measures apply. Learn more
Duration 3 hours
Check availability to see starting times.
Live tour guide
Small group
Limited to 6 participants


  • Swim with manatees
  • Learn about the animals in a classroom type setting
  • Encounter the curious creatures in their natural habitat
  • Get treated like a VIP aboard the comfortable pontoon boat
  • Enjoy coffee, tea, hot cocoa, juice, water and cocktails on board
Full description
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 depart.
  • Wetsuits
  • Masks
  • Snorkels
  • Coffee, tea and hot cocoa on board
  • Guide/captain
  • Gratuities
  • Photo packages
Covid-19 precautions
Safety measures in place
  • All areas that customers touch are frequently cleaned
  • The number of visitors is limited to reduce crowds
Traveler requirements
  • You are required to bring and wear a mask
  • You will receive a mandatory temperature check

Select participants and date



Meeting point

Meet at the local operator's facility at 498 SE Kings Bay Drive, Crystal River, Florida 34429.

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Important information

Know before you go

  • Participants must be over 3 years old to take part
  • Participants should be comfortable in the water and able to go up and down a short ladder to board the boat
  • The customized pontoon seats up to 6 people and offers a comfortable and more personalized experience 
Customer reviews

Overall rating

4.9 /5

based on 49 reviews

Review summary

  • Guide
  • Transportation
  • Value for money
  • Safety

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We had the morning tour at 6:30am. The reception and the tour was very good. Faith and Matt were very communicative and we also really enjoyed the quiet and the sunrise. Since we did the tour in March, we had to share a manatee with about 5 other groups, ie one group after the other went into the water and marveled at the manatee. Perhaps these tours should only be offered as long as there are more of the animals around to distribute the stress.

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March 28, 2022

Wade and Trish (our guides) were fantastic, and so was our tour! They greeted us on the boat with hot chocolate, coffee, and snacks! Trish led us in the water while we snorkeled next to the manatees, and by the end of the tour we had nicknamed Trish the “manatee whisperer” due to her ability to instantly befriend these gentle animals. Some manatees floated past us, while others wanted to hand out with us a while! It was an incredible experience, and my family already is planning another trip back! We highly recommend meeting a manatee, and having Wade and Trish as your guides!

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December 29, 2020

It was great to swim with the Manatees. Well organized, good introduction and explanation. It is worth to book for small groups to max 6 people. Once I was alone and had one Manatee next to me, but another boat was close and 3 mins later there were 13 people and of course the manatee disappeared. But I had several encounters with the lovely giants and enjoyed every single one. Our tour guide was not best in taking pics or vids, many pics were not focussed well. Bring your GoPro, it is worth it and you get great pics/vids even in the unclear water. I would book with River Adventures again if we go swimming again with Manatees. It is good to know that the Manatees are heading out to the sea when the water gets warm enough (above 72 or so), book your trip accordingly to make sure you see plenty of them.

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February 20, 2020

Product ID: 151070