There are many things I love about living in Florida, but my favorite has to be the fact that when I want to relax and unwind I don’t need to look far; there is always a good option within a reasonable driving distance.

A couple of weeks back, I had the opportunity to collaborate with Plantation on Crystal River who provided me with a two night stay and invited me to try a manatee snorkeling tour. This is pretty much a dream come true because manatees are my favorite animal. 

Uma das minhas coisas favoritas sobre a Flórida é que quando eu quero relaxar eu não preciso ir muito longe. Com tantas opções de passeio por aqui é muito fácil achar algo para agradar a todos.

Uma das cidade que eu faço questão de visitar todo ano é Crystal River, dessa vez nós estivemos por lá a convite do resort Plantation on Crystal River para para fazer uma das minhas coisas favoritas; mergulhar com manatees (peixe-boi).

ADDRESS

 

Crystal River is a small town located on the Gulf Coast and an easy day trip for anyone visiting Tampa (1 hour 20 minute drive away) or Orlando (1 hour 45 minute drive away).

 Plantation on Crystal River  – 9301 W Fort Island Trail, Crystal River, FL 34429

LOCALIZAÇÃO

Crystal River está situada no oeste do estado e é uma ótima opção para quem está visitando Tampa (1h20) ou Orlando (1h45).

Plantation on Crystal River  – 9301 W Fort Island Trail, Crystal River, FL 34429

HOTEL

Plantation on Crystal River is the best hotel you can stay in town. Not only it is nearby everything the city has to offer but the resort also has several activities to entertain you just in case you are not in the mood to go anywhere.

This resort has plantation style buildings and gorgeous landscaping to bring all that southern charm to life.

Rooms are spacious and comfortable, we stayed in waterfront room which was a great bonus not only the view was gorgeous but it had a huge lawn my kids could play.

If you travel with kids you know that by the end of the day you might want to relax a little but kids are still full of energy. All I had to do at Plantation on Crystal River is open my patio door and suddenly they had plenty of space to run around while I relaxed on the patio chairs. Problem solved, wish every hotel was like that.

I definetely recommend you to request a waterfront room on the first floor if you are traveling with kids.

 

HOTEL

O Plantation on Crystal River é o melhor hotel que você pode se hospedar na cidade. Não só ele fica perto de tudo que a cidade tem para oferecer mas ele também possui diversas atividades caso você não queria sair do hotel.

Os prédios do hotel são no estilo plantation, que são as mansões sulistas americanas e assim que você chega parece que foi transportado para outra era onde o tempo passa mais devagar.

Os quartos do hotel são confortáveis, nós ficamos em um quarto com vista para o rio que foi um otimo bônus não só pela vista mas também pelo fato de as crianças terem um espaço enorme para brincar.

Quem viaja com crianças sabe que no final do dia, ficar em um quarto fechado quando os filhos ainda estão cheios de energia passa longe de ser relaxante. No Plantation on Crystal River eu simplesmente abria a porta do terraço e o problema estava resolvido.

Decididamento recomendo um quarto no primeiro andar com vista para o rio se você está viajando com crianças.

One of the best things at Plantation on Crystal River are the ammenities. Pool area has plenty to do and you can easily spend your whole day there.

My little one (Alex) was all over the place and tried EVERYTHING. He played volley, swam and tried all the games available.

Max on the other hand was obssesed with the giant chessboard only taking a break to swim a little with his brother.

To check Plantation on Crystal River’s prices and availability, click here.

Uma das melhores coisas do hotel  é a área da piscina, cheia de atividades e jogos. Você consegue facilmente passar o dia inteiro por lá.

Meu filho mais novo, o Alex testou tudo! Da piscina a quadra de volley, passando por todos os jogos.

O Max ama xadrez, então ele passou boa parte do dia jogando xadrez gigante e só parou um pouco quando o irmão chamou para nadar.

Para checar os preços do Plantation on Crytal River, clique aqui.

THINGS TO DO IN CRYSTAL RIVER

 

There are many reasons to visit Crystal River, during winter people from all over the world come to witness the manatee migration. Manatees can’t survive in waters below 60 degrees; that means that during manatee migration season, the number of manatees in Crystal River jumps from 60 (resident manatees) to over 400 manatees looking for warmer waters.

In fact, Three Sisters Springs in Crystal River is known for being one of the best places in the world to observe manatees in their natural habitat.

The summer months bring scallop season and scalloping is a fun activity for the whole family but this doesn’t mean that you should avoid Crystal River off-season, this town has so much to offer all year round and you will never be disappointed to visit.

O QUE FAZER EM CRYSTAL RIVER

 

Existem muitas razões para você visitar Crystal River, durante o inverno pessoas do mundo inteiro vem para essa cidadezinha para observar a migração do peixe-boi. Esses animais não conseguem sobreviver em aguás que tenham a temperatura inferior a 16 graus, isso significa que durante o inverno o número de peixes-boi de Crystal River salta dos 60 (animais residentes) para mais de 400 já que os peixes-boi vem procurar pela temperatura mais amena das águas das nascentes. Na verdade a nascente Three Sisters Springs em Crystal River é considerada um dos melhores lugares do mundo para observar esses animais em seu ambiente natural.

Os meses de verão trazem a estacão das vieiras e “scalloping” como nós chamamos o mergulho para coletar vieiras é uma atividade divertida para toda a família. Isso não significa que você deve evitar Crystal River durante a baixa temporada, muito pelo contrário! O ano inteiro existem muitas coisas para se fazer por aqui.

MANATEE SNORKELING TOUR

 

Last year my family and I rented a boat and some snorkeling gear in an attempt to do this tour at our own pace.  Bad mistake! Not only the river is hard to navigate due to the incredible amount of boats, kayaks, and snorkelers, but most important I had a really hard time finding manatees. 

You can only imagine my excitement when Plantation on Crystal River invited me to try their tour, I received two tour tickets and ended up buying two more so my kids could join. Tour tickets cost $95 and it worth every penny!

Best time of the year to do this tour is during winter months and I highly recommend you to book the first tour of the day.

We woke up on a 44 degrees weather ready to snorkel! Who am I kidding, my kids didn’t want to get out of bed and I was starting to wonder if a winter tour was a good idea.

Most of all I was dreading the moment to get in the water but to my surprise, it felt pretty good! Compared to the outside temperature, the 72 degrees water felt really nice.

The tour company was outstanding and they are located inside the resort (very convenient), They were well prepared and had towels, coffee and hot chocolate waiting for us once we got out of the water.

If you are planning to take your kids with you, respect their rhythm. We ended up getting out of the water before everybody else because my son was cold but I he was so excited to have this opportunity I couldn’t imagine doing this tour solo.

This was one of the best experiences of my life! I truly believe that pictures don’t do justice so here is a video.

SNORKEL COM MANATEE

 

Essa não foi a minha primeira vez tentando mergulhar com manatees. Ano passado nós alugamos um parco e eu tentei fazer o passeio sozinha.

Como eu não consegui ver quase nada, esse ano eu dei pulinhos de alegria quando o Plantation on Crystal River me chamou para fazer o manatee tour. O preço por pessoa é $95 dolarés, eles me deram dois tours e eu paguei pelos outros dois. 

A melhor época para fazer esse mergulho é no inverno, e o primeiro tour do dia é o melhor horário.

A gente acordou num frio de 6 grous prontos para mergulhar! Na verdade as crianças estavam  morrendo de preguiça e frio; e eu me perguntando se isso tinha sido uma boa idéia.

Estava super ansiosa pelo momento de entrar na água, só imaginando o quanto eu ia congelar mas para a minha surpresa a temperatura dentro áqua estava muito melhor do que a de fora e eu me senti confortável.

Super bônus que a empresa que fez o tour fica localizada dentro do próprio hotel e eles estavam super preparados. Tinham toalhas, café e chocolate quente esperando por nós quando saímos da água e voltamos para o barco.

Se você como eu está mergulhando com crianças, respeite o ritmo deles. Eu terminei meu mergulho mais cedo porque o Max estava com frio. Esse passeio valeu cada centavo e com certeza eu vou voltar novamente!

O que eu posso dizer sobre esse passeio? Essa foi uma das melhores experiências da minha vida e como palavras e fotos não são suficiente para descrever a minha emoção. Aqui está um vídeo.

DINING

 

There are several great dining options in Crystal River. On property, you will find West 82º Grill, a well known and popular fine dining restaurant. 

Reservations are highly recommended and I’ve learned that the hard way but I was able to enjoy breakfast there and it was great with plenty of options and a great view.

Since I wasn’t able to have diner there I went back to one of my favorite restaurants in Crystal River called Cracker’s a casual eatery with live music and great bay views. This is a sit back, have a drink and relax type of place where locals and tourists mix in perfect harmony.

You can’t go wrong here! Food is good, prices are fair and atmosphere is GREAT.

RESTAURANTES

 

Existem diversos bares e restaurantes em Crystal River. Dentro do próprio hotel você encontra o West 82º Grill, esse é um restaurante fine dinning e um dos melhores da cidade. Reservas são altamente recomendadas, eu por exemplo nao prestei atenção nesse detalhe e não consegui jantar lá nenhuma das noites. Em compensação o West 82º Grill foi a milha escolha para o café da manhã.

Já que eu não consegui jantar no West 82º Gril, eu voltei em um dos meus restaurantes favoritos na cidade o Cracker’s, um bar com música ao vivo que fica bem em frente a baía, garantindo assim uma ótima vista do pôr do sol, ele é um desses lugares que moradores e turistas se misturam em sintonia.

A comida é casual com preços justos e um ambiente super agradável.

Every time I visit, I find that Crystal River is Florida’s best hidden secret. I’m always saying goodbye wishing to return as soon as possible  to enjoy all this town has to offer and the Plantation on Crystal River proved to be the perfect place to do just that; ENJOY.

Cada vez que eu venho para Crystal River fico mais convencida que esse é um dos melhroes segredos da Flórida. Saio sempre com vontade de voltar o mais rápido possível e o Plantation on  Crystal River provou ser o lugar parfeito para aproveitar tudo de melhor que a cidade oferece.

Hi, I’m Carolina – lifestyle and travel blogger, based in Orlando, FL. Thanks for following along my adventures! READ MORE

Oi, meu nome é Carolina e gosto de falar sobre lifestyle e opções de turismo em Orlando, FL. Sigam as minhas aventuras!   READ MORE

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