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Crystal River Tour with Manatee Swim and Everglades Airboat Ride

star-4.5233 Reviews
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Kissimmee, United States
Crystal River Tour with Manatee Swim and Everglades Airboat Ride
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Free cancellation
Up to 24 hours in advance. Learn more
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Safety measures
icon12 hours  (approx.)
Mobile ticket
iconOffered in: English
Good for avoiding crowds

Overview

Spend a day in one of central Florida’s natural manatee habitats on this guided cruise and Everglades airboat adventure. Begin with a boat ride on the Crystal River. Then, swim and snorkel in an area known for manatee sightings, and before an exciting airboat tour on the Withlacoochee River. Breakfast and a sit-down lunch, plus an Orlando-area hotel pickup and drop-off are all included.
  • Wildlife adventure to the Crystal River and Withlacoochee River from Orlando
  • Take a narrated boat cruise along the Crystal River, and spend time hanging out in a natural manatee habitat
  • Enjoy a thrilling Everglades airboat tour on the Withlacoochee River
  • Breakfast and a sit-down lunch at a restaurant are included
  • Orlando-area hotel transfers included
Saved to wishlist!
Professional guide
Packed breakfast and sit down lunch at local restaurant
30-minute Airboat tour
Boat cruise with snorkeling
Premium Scuba Pro Masks
Convenient pick up locations throughout Orlando
Local taxes
Gratuities
Hospital grade sanitized wetsuits are mandatory and payable at $15.00 directly to dive shop
  • Maingate Lakeside Resort , 7769 W Irlo Bronson Memorial Hwy, Kissimmee, FL 34747, USA
  • Swan Hotel , Swan Hotel, 1200 Epcot Resorts Blvd, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830, USA
  • Señor Frog's , 8747 International Dr #103, Orlando, FL 32819, USA
  • 7:30 AM
    This activity will end right where it started.
    The day of sightseeing begins with breakfast in Orlando. Meet the guide and the rest of the tour group on a pickup from select locations. Then, head to Crystal River, the gem of Florida's beautiful coast and home to one of the world's largest populations of endangered West Indian manatees.

    Out on the water with the provided equipment, take an optional swim or snorkel. Spend time hanging out in the manatee’s natural habitat alongside certified dive masters. Learn more about this harmless mammal and why it’s under threat due to a loss of habitat.

    After the cruise, enjoy a sit-down lunch at a restaurant.

    The adventure continues in the afternoon with an airboat tour along the Withlacoochee River. Keep an eye out for manatees, dolphins, and a variety of other wildlife.

    The tour ends with a return trip to Orlando and hotel drop-off.
    Itinerary
    Stop At:  
    Crystal River
    Your day starts in Orlando with breakfast. Then, it's off to join a team of manatee experts for a narrated boat cruise on the picturesque Crystal River, home to one of the world's largest populations of endangered West Indian manatees. Learn how this large, harmless aquatic mammal is under threat due to loss of habitat. With your provided mask and snorkel, you are encouraged to go for a swim in an area known for manatee sightings while under the guidance of certified dive masters.
    Duration: 2 hours 
    Admission Ticket Included
    Stop At:  
    Wild Bill's Airboat Tours
    After your cruise, enjoy a picnic-style lunch overlooking this beautiful sanctuary. Your adventure continues in the afternoon with a 30-minute airboat tour on the Homosassa River. During your airboat ride, keep your eyes peeled for manatees and dolphins, as well as a host of other wildlife.
    Duration: 30 minutes
    Admission Ticket Included
    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking, unless booked within 5 days of travel. In this case confirmation will be received within 48 hours, subject to availability
    • Not wheelchair accessible
    • Minimum age is 3 years
    • Items recommended to bring: towel, bathing suit, sunscreen, insect repellant, camera
    • Infants must sit on laps
    • Post COVID-19 Safety Updates - We politely request that you refrain from taking this tour should you start displaying any of the symptoms associated with COVID-19, or if you are at a high risk of contracting the disease. Face masks are recommended but not mandatory, so please bring your own if you wish to wear one.
    • Most travelers can participate
    • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 50 travelers
    • OPERATED BY City Sightseeing Orlando
    You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.
    • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
    • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
    • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
    • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
    • 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 experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

    Learn more about cancellations.

    The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
    Q:
    What is the policy on face masks and attendee health during Crystal River Tour with Manatee Swim and Everglades Airboat Ride ?
    A:The policies on face masks and attendee health are:

    • Face masks required for travelers in public areas
    • Face masks required for guides in public areas
    • Face masks provided for travelers
    See all safety measures taken by Crystal River Tour with Manatee Swim and Everglades Airboat Ride .
    Q:
    What is the policy on sanitization during Crystal River Tour with Manatee Swim and Everglades Airboat Ride ?
    A:The policies on sanitization are:

    • Hand sanitizer available to travelers and staff
    • Regularly sanitized high-traffic areas
    • Gear/equipment sanitized between use
    • Transportation vehicles regularly sanitized
    See all safety measures taken by Crystal River Tour with Manatee Swim and Everglades Airboat Ride .
    Q:
    What measures are being taken to ensure staff health & safety during Crystal River Tour with Manatee Swim and Everglades Airboat Ride ?
    A:The policies on staff health & safety are:

    • Guides required to regularly wash hands
    • Regular temperature checks for staff
    See all safety measures taken by Crystal River Tour with Manatee Swim and Everglades Airboat Ride .

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    Traveler Tips


    • "Also, meals are provided but they are not great and food allergies are not well accommodated." See review
    • "Not the best choice for 2 growing boys and a person with diabetes." See review
    • "If you enjoy the water and connecting with nature, this family friendly trip is for you." See review

    Reviews

    4.5
    star-4.5
    233 Reviews

    Reviews by Viator travelers

    We perform checks on reviews

    Showing 1-10 of 233 reviews
    star-5
    Bucket list checked
    Aaron_D
    , Jun 2022
    We had an amazing time in this adventure. We'll beyond our expectations! Never thought we would get this close to the manatees. Big thanks to Captain Glen and guide Zach. Then to top it off with an absolute exciting airboat ride. Captain Aaron was awesome.
    icon Response from Host , Jul 2022
    Thank you for sharing! We are glad you had a nice time
    star-3
    The manatee swim was...
    Mary_A
    , Jun 2022
    The manatee swim was great. It wasn’t the tour I signed up for and we didn’t go to the Everglades for the airboat ride but it was still a fun experience. I don’t know if there is a different price for the tour I actually booked or not. My husband was unable to attend. We had reserved the first row of seats since he used a scooter but that wasn’t available if he had come. The lunch was good.
    icon Response from Host , Jun 2022
    Hello Mary, Please contact our office. We would like more information to look into this matter further. reservations@citysightseeingorlando.com
    star-4
    Worth it!
    Tracey_G
    , May 2022
    Everything was great except the driver. Such a fantastic experience, so glad we decided to do this. We waited a long time to do it and was grateful that this was available.
    icon Response from Host , May 2022
    Thank you Tracey. We love this tour too. It really is the best one we offer
    star-5
    Great experience for all.
    Nicole_P
    , Apr 2022
    Snorkled with the Manatees guides did a great job finding them. Guides also took pictures of the trip with underwater camera that were available to purchase. The kids had a great time and as an added bonus they took us to Crystal River.
    icon Response from Host , Apr 2022
    Awesome! Glad you had a good time!
    star-3
    Shambolic Chaos!
    Michelle_C
    , Apr 2022
    The trip did not start well! The pick-up time communicated was 0800 and we had to get an Uber to get to the hotel. The hotel chosen was not convenient as advertised and you can’t get a Disney shuttle that early! We arrived at 0700 because I was worried about getting there and went and got a coffee. We then walked round to get the coach at 0740 to find it was there and pick up was 0730! Not a fantastic day! Then our tour guide Robin was very dismissive as thought we were late! We were not, we were given the wrong information. Then more stops and more confusion wrong customers on coaches and again chaos! The breakfast and lunch was not great and very basic. The tour guide was using Google and could not actually tell us anything my 9year old could tell you! The actual experience with the team at Crystal River was amazing and they were organised and spot on. The positive to it was that we got 2 extra experiences a trip to a State Reserve to see hippos, alligators and more manatee and then Alligator hunting on fan boats.. this was not advertised but was fabulous! All in all absolute chaos and the guide a waste of space but worth the upset as the experiences were amazing!
    icon Response from Host , Apr 2022
    Thank you for your feed back. We are glad you had a good day. We will address the issues with the guide right away.
    star-5
    Experience Central Floridas natural beauty and habitats.
    DanielH_S
    , Apr 2022
    We will never forget the face to face encounters with the Manatee. The whole day was. The entire day was very well organized, informative and entertaining for our family. We would for sure go back again for this day trip. Thank you Dave and Carlos!
    icon Response from Host , Apr 2022
    Thanks guys! We are glad to here you had a good time. We hope to see you again sometime
    star-1
    Horrible experience, will not recommend to anyone
    HARPREETSINGH_L
    , Apr 2022
    Horrible experience as the operator was rude and not willing to show or guide. He looked like annoyed with us as we were not good enough at swimming. He didn’t give us any life jackets, just advised to take noodles. When one of our guy struggled in the water to come back to the boat, he said I m not allowed to help as I m a boat person and not allowed to leave boat.
    icon Response from Host , Apr 2022
    I am so sorry to hear of your experience. Please contact our office at reservations@citysightseeingorlando.com so that we get more information to look into this matter further.
    star-5
    Enjoyed riding in the...
    Shannon_J
    , Apr 2022
    Enjoyed riding in the boat and looking more manatee along with watching my children get a new experience swimming with the gentle giants
    icon Response from Host , Apr 2022
    This is our best trip! So glad you enjoyed it. Thank you for your comments
    star-5
    Great family experience
    Amanda_S
    , Apr 2022
    Great experience. Manatee swim as magnificent and the airboat ride was so much fun. The tour guide was the perfect combination of witty and knowledgeable on everything from Florida history to which bathrooms to avoid.
    icon Response from Host , Apr 2022
    Manatees are magnificent...I agree! Glad you had a good time....and hey knowing what pottys to avoid is a good thing right?
    star-5
    Dave was an awesome tour...
    Jeremy_M
    , Mar 2022
    Dave was an awesome tour guide, very knwledgable and spontaneous personality, all 3 excursions were well worth the money, to put the icing on the cake we got an adrenaline rush and shower on the airboat ride. AWESOME TRIP!
    icon Response from Host , Mar 2022
    We're glad you had a great trip. Thank you for sharing and traveling with us. We hope to see you again soon.
    star-5
    Amazing
    Joseph_C
    , Mar 2022
    Great experience start to finish your guide was the best you can ever ask for kind a caring and their for your needs and keeps you happy and excited the hole way the snorkeling was Amazing and the guys showing you the way were awesome definitely want to experience it again
    icon Response from Host , Mar 2022
    We're glad you had a great trip. Thank you for sharing and traveling with us. We hope to see you again soon.
    star-5
    Awesome trip
    Elaine_R
    , Mar 2022
    Manatee swim. I did it actually go in the water but I could see the manatees from the boar below the surface and bobbing up for air
    icon Response from Host , Mar 2022
    We're glad you had a great trip. Thank you for sharing and traveling with us. We hope to see you again soon.
    star-5
    Amazing day for the family
    Edward_M
    , Mar 2022
    Dave and Tirson were nothing short of amazing. They were great guides and made sure we taken care of. It was a truly great day for myself, wife and 16yo daughter. Also the staff and captains crew at Birds dive shop were awesome. I would highly recomend this tour to anyone.
    icon Response from Host , Mar 2022
    We're glad you had a great trip. Thank you for sharing and traveling with us. We hope to see you again soon.
    star-5
    Manatee swim adventure
    Samantha_F
    , Mar 2022
    Helen and Tirson were amazing! They really made sure we got the full experience and enjoyed ourselves the entire time. The airboat was the best!
    icon Response from Host , Mar 2022
    Thank you so much for sharing! We’re glad you had a great time. Thank you for traveling with us. We hope to see you again soon.
    star-5
    First a thank you to our...
    Katherine_H
    , Mar 2022
    First a thank you to our host Helen, she was very warm and welcoming and kept us informed. Also a big thank you to Carlos our driver who managed to get us there safely thru the horrible traffic and despite the rain storm. We had a wonder time, only seen one Manatee but was able to spend lots of time watching her. Captain and mate on boat were awesome. The air boat ride was so much fun and our captain was very informative and took the time to show us and educate us on the everglades. Highly recommend this trip.
    icon Response from Host , Mar 2022
    Thank you so much for sharing your experience! We're glad you had a great time. We hope to see you again soon!
    star-3
    Overall pretty good would recommend some changes though.
    cynthia_r
    , Jan 2022
    Overall neat experience . Manatee swim was great. Captain Gary was very nice and so glad he took pics of my daughter and husband and myself from his phone , because we were not provided with a swimmer in our boat or someone to take pics, so we will have to remember the in water experience with out any pics . Rushed from Homosassa Park ( was supposed to be a few hours was less than an hour, (really wish we had longer there ) to go on a very lame airboat tour where we only saw maybe 3 alligators. It was nice to not have to drive there but during the bus ride ,part of the bus ceiling started falling down midway and we had to rearrange seats which did not lend itself to social distance as much as we would have liked . I would definitely recommend swimming with the manatees, but would arrange a different tour and stay closer to Crystal river so we could be there earlier to witness a greater amount of manatees . By the time we had picked up at all our stops and gotten to Crystal river it was like ? 1030 or later . It was a fun experience but definitely could have been much better. Total cost of trip for the three of us . 504.97 (139.99- tour, $15 each for wetsuits ( was told it would be $10 each) and tips .
    icon Response from Host , Jan 2022
    Thank you so much for your valued feedback. We're glad you enjoyed your manatee swim. Regarding the sighting of wild animals, our boat captains at both locations always try their best for you to see the most wild animals as possible. It is unpredictable to say of how many wild animals you'll see, as we visit their home in their natural environment. The cost of the wetsuit is $15 per person, which are required for you to swim with the Manatees. Not sure where the information of a $10 wetsuit came from, but please feel free to share any additional feedback with us (reservations@citysightseeingorlando.com). Regarding the time at Homosassa State Park, it is on every tour between 30 minutes to 1 hour, depending on the time of return from the Manatee swim. So sorry you did not have enough time at the Homosassa Park, we will certainly look into the timings of the reservations. For the safety of guests and staff, we do require facial coverings whilst on the tour vehicle. Gratuities are not expected on any tour, but I'm sure certainly appreciated by your guides of the day. Again, please feel free to reach out with any additional feedback and we hope to see you again soon! Thank you for booking with us.
    star-5
    Brilliant Trip!
    Hannah_M
    , Dec 2021
    We had a MAGICAL trip to swim with the manatees, our trip was later in the day than I had done before (it’s my recommendation to go early morning as you see more manatees that time of day). We swam with two, the company used by this tour provider are smaller and not like some of the larger companies out on Crystal River so you don’t suddenly crowd the manatee. Helen on the tour bus was knowledgable and so friendly, we thoroughly enjoyed her occasional tid bits shared on the microphone and she made sure to check in with us often. The airboat ride was also great fun, the drivers are very skilled so did tricks on the water and also stopped to highlight the cypress trees and gators. Overall the day was fantastic value for money and it’s much cheaper than renting a car and having to do all the driving yourself, especially coming from overseas!
    icon Response from Host , Dec 2021
    Thank you so much for the kind words. We are really happy you had a good time!
    star-5
    Manatees were right...
    Tammy_W
    , Oct 2021
    Manatees were right nearby the start of the tour. Spent a lot of time in the water with them. The wildlife park provided great up close pics of birds and animals. Loved all of the birds on the airboat tour and saw 2 gators.
    icon Response from Host , Oct 2021
    Thank you so much for your feedback! We would agree this is a great day out from the hustle and bustle of Orlando and truly shows what Florida has to offer in one day! Thank you again and we look forward to having you back in the near future!
    star-4
    Fun adventure despite the weather
    Dawn_W
    , Jul 2021
    The weather did not cooperate with us unfortunately. However, with that being said I did seem as though our captain did not want to be working that day. He had a few words with a couple other boats and a diver. Only saw one manatee but learned that July is off season to see them. The captain brought us back in early due to weather which I can appreciate his concern for our well being. The place could use some overhead protection in the changing rooms as we were trying to get dressed in the rain with our dry clothes. I would highly advise bringing a small cooler with drinks and snacks. There is plenty of room on the bus to store your items. I would also advise an extra set of dry clothes just in case the weather doesn’t cooperate. We had to spend the entire rest of the day in wet clothes due to having to get dressed in the rain with no overhead protection. Airboat tour was exciting even though the rain was stinging our faces. May want to bring along a poncho. All in all would do the tour again when we are back in the area.
    icon Response from Host , Jul 2021
    Thank you so much for your feedback! Yes we understand the weather can put a damper on the day on occasion. In Florida in the summer we never can get it absolutely spot on. Although the summer months are off season we do run this tour year round and have great success with the Manatee Swim. We do offer information prior to the tour in regards to what to bring and to definitely bring a change of clothes, but will ensure that all communication channels are working properly. Thank you so much for your feedback as this is very important to us and our future guests! We hope to have you back soon.
    star-5
    For nature and animal lovers
    Tom_D
    , Jul 2021
    An overall great experience that the family will be talking about for years! If you enjoy the water and connecting with nature, this family friendly trip is for you.
    icon Response from Host , Jul 2021
    Thank you so much for your feedback! We are so happy you and the family enjoyed this tour! We agree it is a great day out for all!

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