Tours and Tickets

Crystal River Manatee Swim in Kings Bay National Wildlife Refuge provided by River Ventures Manatee Tour Center

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Crystal River Manatee Swim in Kings Bay National Wildlife Refuge

COVID-19 update: See the added health and safety measures this experience is taking.Read more
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2 adults
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What you can expect during this experience
  • Guides required to regularly wash hands
  • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
  • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
  • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
  • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
Updated 06/21/20 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.
Updated 06/21/20 Safety precautions are provided by the property and are not checked by Tripadvisor for accuracy.
Get in the water with Florida's endangered manatees on this snorkeling tour to the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge, with several time options to suit your schedule. With your guide's careful supervision, you'll safely swim and snorkel around these slow-moving giants and learn about their biology and behavior, as well as the conservation efforts that protect them. Pack light, as your wet suit, snorkel gear, and mask are provided.
  • Chance to swim with the manatees under the direct supervision of a guide
  • Learn about their biology and behavior, plus efforts to protect them
  • Get expertly fitted for a wet suit, mask, and snorkel
  • Guides take photos of you, so you can stay in the moment
  • Opt to purchase a CD of the high-resolution images
What to Expect
Meet your guide and group at the tour office, located in downtown Crystal River. Multiple times are available throughout the day; early morning tours offer the best times to swim with the manatees. Watch a video about the manatees and get an introduction to the rules of swimming safely around these endangered animals. Get fitted with a mask and wet suit to ensure the best possible conditions for your wildlife adventure. Slip into the water and float weightlessly near the large creatures, who are known to swim slowly and forage on the river's bottom for sea grass meals. While you swim, your guides will take photographs of you, both above and below the water, so you’ll have plenty of memories to share but can stay focused and in-the-moment. Back at the office, you can opt to purchase a CD of your high-resolution images.
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Important Information
Departure Point
498 SE Kings Bay Dr, Crystal River, FL 34429, USA
Return Details
Returns to original departure point
  • Use of equipment (mask, snorkel gear and wet suit)
  • Beverages (bottled water, coffee and hot chocolate)
  • Professional guide
  • Introductory/instructional video offered in English, French, German, Japanese, or Spanish
  • Gratuities
  • Food and beverages (unless otherwise specified)
  • Photo DVD (available to purchase)
  • Towel and swimsuit
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Additional Info
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Adult pricing applies to all travelers
  • Children must be accompanied by an adult
  • Wetsuits are available in all sizes from toddlers (2 years old and up) to adults up to 5X
  • It is advised that you have your swimsuit on underneath your clothes for a quicker check-in
  • Please bring a towel and a plastic bag to hold your belongings
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Children under 3 years old are not allowed on this tour. Please call for other options.
  • Most travelers can participate
  • Post COVID-19 Policy- We are mindful to thoroughly clean water vehicles between visitors.
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 10 travelers
Cancellation Policy
For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
Traveler rating
  • 607
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  • 4
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Traveler type
Time of year
Popular mentions
rollingblubber wrote a review Nov 23
Mercer, Wisconsin255 contributions98 helpful votes
Words cannot explain how awesome this was. I did NOT want to go because I am TERRIFIED of swimming in non-pools. I never in my life even considered going into what I (from Wisconsin) consider the ocean. I didn't sleep a wink the night before due to nervousness. Long story
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Date of experience: November 2020
KimM wrote a review Nov 21
2 contributions
Derek and Troy were really good at spotting manatees. They were also very accommodating and knowledgeable of the area. Not only were we able to swim with the manatees, but Troy pointed out many other wildlife on the bay. Recommend them to anyone looking to swim with manatees
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CSBernie wrote a review Nov 19
1 contribution
We had the BEST time! From the moment we walked in the door it was all happy. We were on time leaving for our adventure and we saw so many beautiful and friendly Manatees to was crazy! We cannot say enough about the whole adventure. Thank you to Trish and Wade! You two were
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Date of experience: November 2020
Marisa Mayberry wrote a review Nov 18
1 contribution
Please go here if you want the best manatee experience!! Caption Shelly and John were amazing and really took care of us! We have the most amazing time and will definitely come back again!
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Date of experience: November 2020
Valerie H wrote a review Nov 14
5 contributions
Captain Gavin and JJ were our guides and boy were they great at what they do. We went before the manatees actually came in for the winter, but were still able to see lots of them. After a quick video and getting into a wet suit, it was a short van ride to the dock. Boat was nice
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Date of experience: November 2020
About the operator

Don’t take it from us – here’s what people have to say about this operator.

By: River Ventures Manatee Tour Center
Manatee tour
Had the best time! Mike and Shellie were such great tour guides. We really had the most wonderful experience we cou
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Capt Dave and Ross made our trip great with facts and cool info about the manatees. As an amputee, I was concerned.
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River Ventures Manatee Tour!
Only rationale for 4 stars vs 5 was the fact that there were several other tour operators operating simultaneous th
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What an amazing adventure! Trisha and Wade were so fantastic. Super friendly and Very knowledgeable. We were very
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Swim with the manatees - better than you could even hope for
We had an amazing private houseboat tour to swim with manatees. Capt. Wade & Trish were marvelous. We saw several a
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Amazing Tour
I found this tour company because of Trip Advisor and the reviews are accurate! They accommodated us with a same d
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Alyssa L
Simply the best!!
I can't say enough good things about River Ventures! I refuse to book with any other company! Everyone on staff is
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Such an amazing experience!
We had such an awesome time with Captain Gavin and Swim Guide Heidi! We saw probably 20 manatee that swam right up
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Best time ever!
Captain Wade and our guide Tricia were extremely knowledgeable and professional. The duo showed a sincere and pass
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Amazing and Unique experience. MUST DO!!
This was an amazing attraction. We could not have had a better experience. Captain MIke and our guide JJ were grea
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10th Anniversary Manatee Trip! I wanna go every year, Dear!
LOVED IT!!!! My hubby and I honeymooned 10 years ago in Crystal River and swam with the manatees! so for our 10th
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Wonderful experience!
My husband went on a cruise with Mike and Shellie. They were both very friendly and informative! We got to see seve
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Most incredible guides for a family experience.
This was the best experience we could have had in Florida! I went with my 8 year old son, and my aunt. Captain Wade
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Family Fun Day 5hr Tour
We booked and went on the 5hr family fun day. My family consisted of my wife, our three kids ages of 12, 7 and 6,
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Fantastic experience!
We had an awesome time. We were seeing manatee as soon as we left the dock. Once we got into the water we were seei
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Key Details
  • Duration: 3h
  • Mobile Ticket Accepted
  • Free Cancellation up to 24 hours in advance
  • Instant Confirmation
  • Languages Offered: English
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Frequently Asked Questions about Crystal River Manatee Swim in Kings Bay National Wildlife Refuge