The Ultimate Guide to Swimming with Manatees in Crystal River, Florida

Have Clothes, Will Travel

It’s hard to believe that there are species of marine animals that are calm and peaceful as they are cute, adorable, and cuddly. Manatees and their lives are always a constant source of fascination to many (myself included).

Swimming with manatees in Crystal River, Florida was a dream come true! I’m sharing my experience swimming with them, and everything you need to know before you hop in the water with these gentle giants.

Avoid Touching.

This is to avoid the manatees being accustomed to people which can alter their behavior making them more susceptible to harm.

Passive Observation

Passive observation means waiting patiently for a manatee to approach you. Never disturb, chase, follow, or wake a sleeping manatee.

Go in Silently

When on a manatee swim tour, go in the waters silently as loud splashing, blowing bubbles, or cannonballing can scare them away.

Avoid Manatee Lawns

Being the largest herbivores in the ocean, there are designated sanctuaries or lawns that are maintained where manatees can graze freely. These areas are off-limits to visitors.

Dress for Protection

The wetsuit and noodle will keep you afloat on the surface and prevent you from bottoming out to where a group of manatees may be resting.

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