Florida Outdoor activities and watersports They are open all year. Water temperatures for natural springs in the northern and central parts of the state average 70 degrees—perfect for paddling and even swimming (sometimes with a wetsuit) any time of the year. The hospitable waters attract some of the region’s most beloved residents: Florida manatees. Here’s a look at the best ways to experience the waters around Crystal River and ethically observe the marine life that resides there.
Swim with Manatees
Florida’s manatee season—when the animals migrate from cold ocean waters to warmer inland springs—typically spans mid-November to late March. But at the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge—the only protected area dedicated to Florida manatee habitat preservation—manatees reside year-round. The area is home to around 800 manatees during winter. During summer, up to 100 so-called “sea cows” remain. Explorida Daily manatee tours are offered that allow you to see the animals in their natural habitat. The tours begin on land with instructions for passive observation techniques and the refuge’s regulations for interacting with manatees….