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“Manatees, sharks, and herons, oh my!”

Tampa Electric Manatee Viewing Center
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$160.00*
and up
Motorcycle Ride to Manatee Viewing Center
Ranked #6 of 197 things to do in Tampa
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Visitors come to this warm water viewing center to see manatees, an endangered species of marine mammals.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Reviewed January 12, 2013

What a blast. We wanted to see manatees, searched where one should look for manatees in Tampa, and discovered the TECO Manatee Viewing Center. There are two different areas, a long pier at the end of a walkway through a mangrove swamp, and an array of elevated decks where the viewing is best.

We walked out on the pier first. We thought we'd only be seeing a few waterbirds, the humped backs of manatees quite some distance away, and the gymnastics of some stingrays that were leaping from the water as they fed. Then we climbed to the viewing decks and waited. It wasn't long before some fine fellows drifted by in the murky water.

This is marvelous place although you can't really get here without a car. You certainly can't beat the price: free!

2  Thank lnwyd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,546 - 1,550 of 1,882 reviews

Reviewed January 10, 2013

You can see literally hundreds of manatees from the walkways! Astonishing. Best place to visit to see the manatees up close.

Thank fisherpl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 8, 2013

This is a FREE attraction in the Tampa Bay area. Manatees migrate to the warm, clean water of this TECO plant when the temp in the gulf is less than 68 degrees. Hubby and I visited on New Year's Day and there were probably around 50 manatees visible. Very nice facility...educational. If you're in the area...don't miss it!

3  Thank waswild
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 7, 2013

Recently stopped by this facility on a cold day. There were 6-7 manatees out but they were in and out of the water a lot and many times were not very visible. The place was really crowded. There is signage off the Interstate how to get there. Thanks to Tampa Electric for providing the site so that visitors can see the manatees. Due to the cold weather and a busy schedule we were there a limited time and may have seen more of them had we stayed. Certainly worth a stop. Don't be surprised if there is a big crowd there - parking is somewhat limited.

1  Thank Don N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 5, 2013

TECO's Manatee Viewing Center is a great way to get up close to animals. You can see hundreds of the sea cows during the cooler winter months. Today I saw many baby manatees swimming close to their mamas. So cute. You also may see several species of fish including mullet, tarpon, snook, sheep's head, spinner sharks, and even stingrays. If it's a nice calm day, you can get some great pictures. TECO has also created a small nature trail and butterfly garden. It's a completely free attraction that is fun for everyone.

1  Thank Shelley B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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