Manatees for a Monday

We went to “Three Sisters Springs” in Crystal River this past weekend.  It was one of their “free” days. We try to go to these whenever possible–especially when we have guests!  Otherwise, the only way to get into the park is to pay to ride the trolley from the Visitor’s Center.

This time the buses were running from the Manatee Festival in Crystal River.  We went to the Manatee Festival a few years ago specifically to get on the bus and go to the park.  By the time we had got through the crowds to the pick up spot, there was a very long line.  We left and drove to a shopping plaza that’s directly across the street and walked into the park.

bus line
That’s the line for the bus at the 2016 Manatee Festival!

This year the charge for the Manatee Festival is $5.00.  And it was really cold.  So we parked at the plaza and walked in. Along with dozens of other people that had figured this out.

We went to the park back in December with Lauri, Piper, and Adley but it was a warm day and the manatees were out catching the rays somewhere else.

But Saturday was a cloudy, windy, COLD day, and the manatees were on view all along the boardwalk!

This is at the mouth of Three Sisters Springs. Hundreds of manatees huddled together.

This is the only entrance for the manatees into Three Sisters Springs

The boardwalk goes by the Three Sisters (Big Sister, Little Sister, and Pretty Sister) and Idiot’s Delight.  A path continues from the boardwalk to Magnolia Springs.  This was the first time we walked down to Magnolia.  According to the guide, Magnolia is a deep spring so the manatees just float on top of the water.

Manatees for a Monday
Magnolia Spring, those are not rocks, those are backs of manatees!

Like I said, it was cold.  Here’s Terry and Phil Prior and my Terry. Terry and Phil were visiting us from South Carolina–no manatees there!

Manatees for a Monday

The cold didn’t keep the tourists away!

It was a great day with good friends.  But we were happy to get out of the cold!

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