Southern Charm in the Home of the Manatees

Plantation on Crystal River • Crystal River, FL

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Escape Kit

  • A One-Night Stay for Two, Sundays through Thursdays, in a Waterside Room and a $25 Resort Credit ($86)
  • Or, a Two-Night Stay for Two, Fridays and Saturdays, in a Standard Room and a Daily $30 Resort Credit ($189)
  • Or, a Two-Night Stay for Two, Sundays through Thursdays, in a Standard Room, with a Manatee Tour for Two and One Breakfast for Two ($218)

King's Bay is nothing new to the West Indian manatees. More than 400 of the gentle giants call the natural spring bay on Florida's Nature Coast, which remains a steady 72 degrees year-round, home. Crystal River, one of the Sunshine State's hidden gems, boasts amusements on a smaller scale than Orlando, but the options are arguably more gratifying—it's the only place in the US where you can legally swim with the manatees.

Located on the shore of King's Bay, surrounded by 232 acres of lush land dotted with grand oaks, pines, and palms, sits the 50-year-old Plantation on Crystal River. About 90 minutes from Tampa, Gainesville, and Orlando, the eco-friendly property is a member of the Green Hotels Association, and offers a number of entertainment choices.

While it may be located in the self-proclaimed Home of the Manatees, the vibe is very Florida Dixie—it's on the Gulf, after all—with Southern hospitality complementing the grand antebellum structure and manicured lawns. The hotel reopened earlier this year after undergoing a facelift, and the updated rooms feel brand-spanking new.

Named one of the Top 10 Spots to Snorkel by Coastal Living, the manatee tours are not to be missed. PADI-certified instructors can be hired for scuba diving lessons, boats (kayaks, pontoon boats, or small fishing boats) can be rented from the marina, and guided diving tours of King's Springs and Rainbow Springs can be scheduled.

Apply a daily resort credit to any of the on-site activities, including, but not limited to, Aveda treatments at the Spa at Plantation, a private tennis lesson, or time on the 27-hole golf course. If that sounds like a little too much action, take a cue from the slow-moving manatees. Cool off in the pool and play a game of croquet or horseshoes, then order a refreshing cocktail at West 82º Grill, where fresh shrimp, snow crab legs, and mussels are popular menu items, in addition to the pepper-crusted prime rib.

Manatees can live for 60 years or longer, and they spend the majority of their time eating, resting, and traveling. Why shouldn't you?

  • "The spa offers extensive services, and the restaurant's creative, Southern-inspired fare deserves mention (think shrimp and grits or boiled peanut hummus). [The] dive shop has daily snorkeling excursions into the area's two major manatee hubs."

    -- Read Fodor's Review of the Plantation on Crystal River

Location

  • map
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    9301 W Fort Island Trail Crystal River, FL 34429
    800-632-6262 | get directions

escapes 30-day promise

LivingSocial gives you up to 30 days to return your unused voucher for a full refund. Once you've made a reservation, you are subject to the merchant's cancellation and refund policy. If you want to secure your preferred dates of travel, we strongly recommend that you complete reservation with the merchant within 30 days of your purchase—after that, LivingSocial will not issue any refunds.

the fine print

  • Limit 1 voucher per reservation; vouchers cannot be combined to extend stay
  • Reservations required and subject to availability
  • Not valid on group or existing reservations
  • Merchant cancellation/re-scheduling policy applies; voucher subject to forfeiture
  • Blackout dates are 12/23/12-1/1/13
  • Manatee Snorkel Tours are available between 7:30 a.m. and 11 a.m.; subject to availability
  • Taxes/Resort fees not included and will be collected at redemption
  • Nights must be used consecutively
  • All deal components must be redeemed during one stay
  • Other conditions apply • PROMOTIONAL VALUE EXPIRES ON January 31, 2013 • Enjoy By January 31, 2013
$86

Original Price: $144

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