Does the same daily routine make you weary? Are you actually an adventure enthusiast at heart but cannot seem to find time to satisfy your thirst for adventure? Have you always wanted to try scuba diving? Have you wondered how deep can a person dive? In that case, you must plan a trip to Crystal River, Florida, and explore the adrenaline rush that scuba diving is bound to give you.
The cozy little town in the citrus county is a paradise for both nature lovers and adventure seekers. The numerous springs and rivers make it the perfect place to experience the thrill of scuba diving. If the chance of adventure, fun, and relaxation has enticed you, then here is a quick guide to let you know all about Crystal River Florida scuba diving.
Where is Crystal River, Florida?
When you are planning a scuba diving trip and is considering Crystal Rivers, the first question bound to come to your mind is where is Crystal River Florida. Well, this small city with a population of just over 3000 is located in Citrus County. It serves as a perfect retreat to relax and rejuvenate. It is situated in the north-west of Tampa, at a distance of approximately 90 miles; it is in close proximity to the Gulf of Mexico.
Crystal River is nestled cozily around the King’s Bay. The amalgamation of about 50 springs feeds the King’s Bay and is the reason behind the warm temperature of the bay throughout the year. The city is lovingly monikered as the winter home of the gentle giant, Manatee, due to the sheer number of Manatee that can be seen between November and April.
What Crystal River, Florida, is known for?
Crystal River, Florida, is known for the various adventurous activities and diversified wildlife. But the topmost reason for its fame is the Manatee. The city houses more than 400 Manatee in Crystal River every year in the winter months. While these gentle sea giants can be seen during the summer, they migrate towards land when the water gets cold due to the drop in temperature. They favor the Crystal River due to its warm water, which it receives from the springs.
These sea creatures, while huge, are quite gentle and playful. It is the only place in the whole of the United States of America where it is legal to make interaction with a manatee in natural habitats. You can easily go scuba diving, swimming, or snorkeling and have a look at them up close. Apart from scuba diving, the city offers fishing, canoeing, manatee safaris, water skiing, kayaking, boating, and snorkeling. There are also options available for camping and hiking.
Crystal River is also a paradise for birdwatchers. Here you can witness more than 200 species of birds, including swallowtail kites, bald eagles, etc. Despite the small size and limited population, the city offers a complete package for tourists with wildlife parks, thrill-seeking activities, and archaeological sites. Now that you know what Crystal River Florida is known for, you can make a better plan for your trip.
The best scuba diving sites in Crystal River, Florida
Owing to the abundance of springs, water sports, especially scuba diving, is quite prevalent in the Crystal River. With the picturesque beauty of nature around and the beautiful marine life that awaits you, let’s take a look at some of the most popular sites for scuba diving in the USA.
If you have a passion for underwater photography or nature photography, you can visit the Mullet Spring. It is situated at a distance of approximately 100 feet from the east direction of Big Spring. The depth of the spring is 8 feet. The panoramic beauty of the surrounding nature is bound to leave you breathless. It is indeed one of the topmost Crystal River Florida scuba diving sites. However, if you want to try something else, you can opt for snorkeling.
Three Sister’s Spring
Are you wondering how the spring got its name? The Three Sister’s Spring actually consists of Little Sister, Big Sister, and Perry Sister. However, the depth of the three springs varies. The depth of spring one is 8-10 feet, while spring two has a depth of 15-18 feet. The third spring has a depth of 4-7 feet.
It is considered one of the most beautiful Crystal River Florida scuba diving spots. However, you must also be aware of the scuba diving dangers that you can come across. The ethereal beauty of nature surrounding the spring is simply unparalleled. A variety of native plants, Spanish moss, cypress trees, palmettos, and air plants magnify the beauty of the spring. If you visit here in spring, you will bear witness to the glory of nature.
The winter season does not disappoint either. In the cold winters, you can spot high numbers of Manatee gathering at the Idiot’s Delight Spring, which is located outside the mouth of the Three Sister’s Spring. Often, during high tides, they swim into the waters of the Three Sisters.
This spring is situated at the Crystal River City Park. It has a depth of 15 feet and is an absolute vision for the tourists. Apart from the glorious beauty of nature, the spring also boasts of freshwater as well as saltwater fishes. You can also find manatees here. You can take a look at this place when you are on the lookout for Crystal River Florida scuba diving sites.
Undoubtedly, this is the chief spot when it comes to Crystal River Florida scuba diving. With a depth of about 30 meters, it is a massive area. The spring also consists of caverns that have a depth of almost 50 feet. The caverns have two entrances. During the months of winter, diversified wildlife can be spotted here. Numerous mangrove snappers, jacks, manatee, mullet, tarpon, and sheepshead are seen.
The stunning beauty of nature surrounding this enormous spring is something that you are unlikely to forget anytime soon. So, if you also have an affinity for underwater photography, then this is the place that will spike your heartbeat.
Previously famed for the cave system, Magnolia Springs is now closed for cave exploration since the collapse in 1963. However, you can go near the entrance room to see the magnificent marine life there. It is also a great site for manatee watching. The spring has a depth of about 35 feet.
Tips to keep in mind while scuba diving in Crystal River, Florida
No matter if you are a novice or a pro at scuba diving, there are certain things that you must always keep in mind. Take a look at some of the tips to ensure that you experience a pleasurable and safe scuba diving.
- Listen keenly to the advice of the diving instructor. Ignorance can be fatal, at times. Also, know about the age limit for scuba diving, especially if you’re going with your kids.
- Do not stop or hold breathing while scuba diving.
- When you are ascending, make sure that it is slow to avoid decompression sickness.
- lways keep an eye on the air gauge and know more about buoyancy control.
Crystal River, Florida is known for scuba diving and is one of those quaint cities that offer a lot more than you expect. Bustling with water activities and vibrant nature, the city proudly boasts of eco-tourism. We earnestly hope that our guide has provided you with wonderful reasons to plan your trip to this beautiful little city in Florida.
Have you taken out your bucket list? Start planning the trip and tick off scuba diving from your bucket list! Hurry up, Crystal River and the Manatee are waiting for you to embrace them.