When looking for things to do in Tampa one of the things I came across was this Manatee Viewing Center. It’s free to do and is pretty popular. There are signs on the interstate about it and everything. So we headed just south of Tampa to Apollo Beach to check it out!
Manatee Viewing Center – Apollo Beach Florida
The Manatee Viewing Center is at the TECO plant (Tampa Electric). Please keep in mind the Manatees are wild animals and are only in the area during the colder months since the water is warm, from November to April.
We were assured the ‘smoke’ is water vapor being released… We drove into the parking lot, but its is a bit hard to find a spot when you go during peak time due to the small parking.
As you walk up the main area from the parking area, there are solar panels and information on them.
We hit the walkway and can you tell the kids were excited?
There is a ramp to walk to the viewing platforms with lots of signs guiding you and lots of manatee statues as well!
This area is a state and federal manatee sanctuary and you are not allowed to feed the manatees. There are also no boats allowed or fishing which is perfect for the manatees.
They have the main water area where you can view.
Then they have a more shallow one. The manatees were sleeping when we went so we had to wait for them to surface. But they made quite a few appearances.
Everyone had a blast waiting to see which manatee would come up next.
We then went to view the ones in the bigger water area, and they were coming up for air all over the place!
You can see the day we visited was cloudy and overcast (mostly). The clearer of a day you visit on, the better you can see the manatees. You can see many pictures from others on Instagram here.
The walk area has plenty of room on both sides to see the manatees.
They have picnic tables so you can bring a lunch, they also have a little stand where you can buy food and drinks. Then of course, they have a gift shop with everything manatees!
I am a Wife, mom to 4 kids, homeschool mom, blogger, social media junkie, gypsy soul, and full time RVer, and Roadschool Family!
We have been on the road since August 2015, and loving travel and seeing new things! I am sharing our journey along the way!
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