The resort is a great place to spot local wildlife—great blue herons, great horned owls, and eagles frequently make appearances on its 232-acre property.
Play a round at the hotel’s 27-hole golf course, located just a few steps from your guest room.
There’s an onsite spa; its signature facials, massages, and body treatments use botanically based Aveda products.
You can sip a tropical drink at the poolside tiki bar, open seasonally.
More than 400 West Indian manatees migrate each winter to nearby Kings Bay, and you can interact with them on diving or snorkeling trips arranged through the hotel.
The hotel can arrange saltwater- or freshwater-fishing tours; if you catch any grouper, snapper, or largemouth bass on the trip, bring it to the chefs at West 82 Grill, who will cook it up for you.
Crystal River, Florida: 72-Degree Waters with a Seasonal Population of Manatees
Situated about 90 minutes north of Tampa on Florida’s Gulf Coast, Crystal River is surrounded by the sparkling Kings Bay. The bay is fed by a springs system that keeps the water temperature at a constant 72 degrees, making it a nice spot to swim and snorkel all year long. Fishing is also popular here—you can troll for largemouth bass in the freshwater bay or cruise into the Gulf of Mexico to catch grouper and snapper.
Crystal River is one of the best places in the world to see manatees in the winter months, when more than 400 West Indian manatees migrate to the warm waters of Kings Bay. You can even swim with the gentle giants on snorkeling or diving excursions; they can be arranged through your hotel or a local dive shop. You can see deer, tortoises, and wading birds up close at Crystal River Preserve State Park on several miles of hiking and biking trails, too.