We recently found ourselves in Crystal River, home of the manatees, and it’s a sweet town that makes for a great outing. We barely dipped our toes in here, but here are some ideas for your next trip!
Things we did:
#1 Visited the Downtown
It’s adorable, and there’s a free museum in the old City Hall to explore. You can even see where the old jail cell used to be in the back! I was especially excited to see the diverse residents who’d found success in Crystal River. It’s always nice to learn about successful people of color, particularly in areas with less diversity today.
#2 Visited the River
You can pay to park at one of the city parks or at the local state park, and they’re easy to find with the signage. There are many ways to visit manatees, and they generally involve a boat rental or tour. We actually stopped at a local ice cream place (priorities) and they had a gorgeous area to sit outside by the water. So we did that for a while, and then we grabbed a seat on a bench and watched the birdlife and sealife for a while. It was awesome.
#3 Visit a Local Cafe
There are tons of local shops to browse (it reminded us of Maine, if Maine had palm trees and the like) and many cafes were calling out to us. The one that we wandered into had great coffee, friendly people, and amazing-looking pastries.
#4 Visit the Local Mall?
Okay, so maybe this isn’t exciting…but we ended up at a local mall that included a chain called Rural King, a movie theater and some local businesses, including a great music store where we found a reasonably priced speaker for our arsenal.
Of course you should check out the local seafood while you’re here, and visiting the Gulf is a good idea. We look forward to visiting again in the future!
Enjoyed this post? If so, you might enjoy reading about our visit to one of these other great places: