With all of the COVID travel restrictions this past year we haven’t been taking the same type of adventures as we have in the past. That’s not all bad though because we’re finding some hidden treasures in our backyard! We’ve taken a few short adventures within the state of Florida and I am so excited to tell you all about the Plantation on Crystal River.
Disclosure: We were compensated for our stay in exchange for this review. All opinions are honest and my own.
Crystal River, Florida is part of the Nature Coast and only about an hour drive north of Tampa Bay. While it would make a great day trip, we decided to spend the weekend! We’ve visited several times in the past to Homassasa Springs, Weeki Wachee, and even to Crystal River this past summer. There are several area attractions to see and do in the area if you like to be outdoors enjoying nature.
This summer when we stayed I let my brother handle the reservations and he found a charming rental house in the area. This was a nice option because we had 10 people and wanted a full kitchen. The downside is that you end up being farther away from your activities and can’t hop back to your room for a quick nap.
Enter the Plantation on Crystal River! A charming golf and fishing resort right on the canals leading up to Kings Bay at the end of Crystal River. The Plantation on Crystal River is located right off of US-19 and near several local eateries.
You never have to leave the property! The Plantation has a year round heated pool and spa overlooking the bay with gorgeous views! Located off the pool deck there is an outdoor Tiki Bar with the worlds greatest Shrimp & Scallop Basket. If you’re looking for finer dining you will enjoy the West 82º Bar & Grill that is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I hear they have an amazing Sunday brunch too!
Located on-site is the Plantation Adventure Center that offers boating, paddling, diving, fishing, scalloping, and manatee tours! The best part is that you don’t have to leave the property and drive to any of these. Across the street they also have a golf course and driving range for even more outdoor fun. There’s also a small activity center inside the main building with board games for the family and a small gift shop if you don’t want to go out for snacks & drinks. There’s also a Spa for all the relaxation after your adventures.
We arrived on a Friday night and there was live music at the Tiki Bar that we could listen to from the porch off our room. On Saturday it was nice sitting out there watching the wildlife around the marina. The pelicans flocked to the marina looking for a snack themselves!
Off of the pool deck there were some yard games to keep yourself busy with too. My daughter challenged me to a game of oversized yard checkers, chess, and shuffleboard. There was a croquet and horseshoe area as well but we didn’t check out the area for long.
We stayed in the main resort area and our room had views of the river. We had a standard room with two queen beds. The resort has undergone renovations recently and is beautifully decorated and has hardwood and tile flooring throughout. The accommodations were very similar to a standard hotel room. Mini fridge in the room. Free WiFi. All the standard amenities. It is an older property that has been maintained beautifully.
One thing we didn’t know before arriving was that the hotel is pet-friendly. Many of the guests had their dogs vacationing with them. Aside from the occasional bark you wouldn’t know there were dogs in the rooms. No dog odors or lingering pet hair to be found! My allergies would have picked up on that part.
Be patient on the weekends during peek season, the front desk staff may be too busy to answer their phones. We had an issue with our television on the first night and it took us walking to the front desk to get some help from the staff. The maintenance staff was quick to arrive and correct the issue in just a few minutes. We never had any other issues arise during the weekend.
We had a nice visit to the Plantation on Crystal River and would recommend it if you’re looking for a resort hotel in that area. Plan your adventures directly with the Plantation Adventure Center and you’ll never have to leave the property!! Stay tuned for my review of the adventure centers Manatee Tours coming later this week.
For more Tampa Bay travel and activities: 99 Things to Do with Kids in Tampa (and surrounding areas)
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