Swimming With Manatees On Crystal River | Taste And See Tampa Bay

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Have you ever dreamed of swimming with gentle giants? Well, look no further because we are about to embark on an extraordinary adventure in the mesmerizing world of manatees. I am Captain John Spann, and today, I invite you to join us at the Plantation Adventure Center for an experience like no other.

A Gathering Like No Other

Welcome to the world's largest natural congregation of manatees during the winter season. Imagine over 700 magnificent manatees coming together in one bay. Yes, you heard that right! Citrus County, with its numerous bays and rivers, attracts over a thousand Florida manatees during the winter months. It is a sight to behold, and we are fortunate enough to witness this unique phenomenon.

The Nature Coast: Old Florida Revealed

One of the most remarkable aspects of this experience is the setting in which it takes place. We are situated on the Nature Coast, a place that epitomizes the charm of old Florida. As you can see behind me, instead of the traditional sandy beaches, we have mangrove forests and swamp marshes surrounding us. It is like taking a step back in time, immersing yourself in the raw beauty of nature.

And the best part? We get to dive into these pristine waters and join the manatees in their playground. It is truly an awe-inspiring and humbling experience.

Unveiling the Magnificence of the Manatees

Curiosity is an inherent human trait, and it is especially amplified when it comes to encountering majestic creatures like manatees. These gentle giants, weighing an astonishing 800 to 1200 pounds on average, exhibit behavior that is both fascinating and captivating. From coming nose to nose with you, to playfully grabbing onto your hand or nudging you, they exhibit natural behavior that is nothing short of enchanting.

I can't help but gush about how adorable these creatures are. Picture this: sitting still in the water, and suddenly, a massive "elephant" glides towards you. It's a manatee, and trust me when I say that their size will astound you. It's like being in the presence of greatness.

The magical part of swimming with manatees lies in the tranquility of the experience. These awe-inspiring creatures exude a peacefulness that is contagious. They are incredibly calm and never display aggression towards humans. In fact, their serene nature has a way of calming your own spirit as you share the water with them.

A Call to Protect and Appreciate

As I spend time with these magnificent creatures, my appreciation for their existence deepens. It becomes clearer than ever why manatees need our protection. It is crucial for people to witness these creatures up close, to truly understand their gentle nature and inherent beauty. When you lock eyes with a manatee, there is an undeniable connection that sparks within you. Suddenly, their conservation becomes a personal calling.

I implore you to come and see these gentle giants for yourself. The experience of looking into their eyes will awaken a dormant desire to protect and preserve. It's not just an abstract concept anymore; it's a responsibility we must embrace.

A Gastronomic Delight at the Plantation on Crystal River

After a mesmerizing encounter with the manatees, it's time to indulge in another remarkable aspect of the Plantation on Crystal River - its delectable cuisine. Joining us today is Rosemary White, and she will be introducing us to a delectable feast featuring locally caught seafood and fresh Florida beef.

Prepare your taste buds! At the Plantation on Crystal River, we pride ourselves on utilizing the freshest ingredients, including succulent Florida grouper, mouthwatering shrimp, and tender scallops. Every bite is a celebration of the rich flavors this region has to offer.

To complement the gastronomic experience, we have two famous drinks that will transport you to a state of pure bliss. The Manitini, with its irresistible blend of tropical flavors, and the Plantation Punch, a concoction designed to uplift your spirits and leave you feeling vibrant and alive.


In the realm of manatees, we are granted an opportunity to witness the beauty of nature intertwined with the genuine curiosity of humanity. It is a dance of admiration and respect, an experience that ignites an insatiable desire to protect and cherish these incredible creatures.

So, what are you waiting for? Come and dive into the world of manatees, and let the magic of their presence awaken the steward within you. Let us explore, protect, and celebrate the wonders of our natural world together.




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Swimming with manatees on Crystal River | Taste and See Tampa Bay
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