We hope that these FAQ’s help to answer some of the questions our guests often have. We will be happy to call you to provide additional information not available on our site.
How is the weather?
Great Question! In Florida, as the saying goes, “stick around for 10 minutes and it will change”. Annually the weather here is spectacular, which accounts for the millions of folks who come to visit our State each year. Summers are humid, and you can count on a little thunder storm most afternoons. Winter mornings are cool...sweatshirt weather at the least.
What should we bring with us?
During the winter months, it is advisable to bring something warm and comfortable. In the summer, bring lots of sunscreen! We encourage all guests to stay well hydrated. A cooler full of water will always be provided, however, during scallop season in particular most charter customers bring snacks or lunch, and beverages of their choosing.
Are there any age restrictions?
Our tours are family friendly and suitable for all ages. At least one member of the party that is chartering Merry Manatee must be at least 18 years of age. Safety equipment that meets USCG regulations will be provided for each individual on board the Merry Manatee. Laws requiring mandatory wearing of life vests by children of certain ages will be reviewed by the Captain prior to departing the dock for full compliance.
Can we bring alcohol?
Arrangements with the Captain in advance may be discussed regarding passengers bringing their own beverages aboard the Merry Manatee. Happy Hour as the sun is setting over the Gulf is a "customer favorite" activity. However, intoxication or unsafe behavior will not be tolerated.
Are there restrooms on the boat?
By design, pontoon boats do not have restrooms on board. It is highly recommended, that all guests plan for a 4 to 4.5 hour charter time without restroom services. Pickup locations all provide safe, clean restroom facilities, and the Captain will allow as much time for guests to use the facilities to their ultimate comfort level.
Are there any restaurants or attractions nearby?
Homosassa and Crystal River offer a wide variety of restaurants, entertainment, attractions, and fun for families and people of all ages. Check with Captain Joe for recommendations.
Should we bring snorkel or dive gear?
Mask, fins, snorkel and mesh bags for gathering scallops are included during scallop season (July – Sept). Our winter manatee eco-tours are designed for photographing and experiencing nature from the comfort of our dry boat; no snorkeling necessary! Guests who desire to swim with manatees will be instructed by Capt. Joe as to the proper way to interact with our peaceful friends without causing stress to the animal. No wet suits provided.
How many people will be on the boat?
The Merry Manatee is a 24′ boat rated for 13 passengers. There will never be more than 6 guests per charter. For groups larger than 6, special arrangements can be made.
What is your animal/wildlife policy?
Manatees, birds and other wildlife are protected in Florida’s Nature Coast. Merry Manatee Tours conforms with Florida Law regarding the feeding, touching, and other harassment of our native wildlife. The Captain will hold a safety briefing prior to departing the dock, as well as an in depth review of the rules and regulations regarding interacting with our Manatee population. Service Animals welcome!
What methods of payment are accepted?
An email confirmation will be sent to reserve your charter on the Merry Manatee. Payment can be made via the secure link attached to the email, or via check (10 days or more prior to your reservation date). Press the BOOK NOW button for current rates
What is your payment/cancellation policy?
An email confirmation will be sent once your charter date is confirmed, which will contain a link for payment. Full payment will be due prior to the charter date. Reservations cancelled more than 72 hours prior to the charter date will receive a full refund.