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Manatee Park

Watch Florida’s most famous marine creature, the manatee, swim in its natural habitat at this non-captive park on the Orange River. 

Located on the Orange River, a small tributary of the Caloosahatchee River, Manatee Park is a serene getaway for both manatees and humans. Visit this park to see some of the state’s most famous creatures in a non-captive refuge. 

This 17-acre (7-hectare) park is a haven for large groups of manatees. During winter, the waters of the Gulf of Mexico get a bit too chilly for manatees. As a byproduct of power generation, Florida Power and Light pumps heated water into canals along the Orange River. This turns the canals into a manatee’s version of a hot tub; the creatures flock here to enjoy the warm water. 

Stop at one of the park’s many riverside vantage points to watch them leisurely swim around. At an average of 10 feet (3.05 meters) long and 1,000 pounds (453 kilograms) in weight, these gentle giants are special sights to see in their natural habitats. 

If you want to see the manatees on the river, put your canoe or kayak in at the park’s boat launch. You can find a boat to rent here. Throw your line into the water at the fishing pier; be sure you have a Florida fishing license. 

The park offers enough amenities to stay here for the entire day, if you wish. Enjoy lunch at one of the picnic tables or take a shady rest under the pavilion. Take younger members of your group to the playground. 

In addition to its manatees, the park is known for a brilliant butterfly garden. Stroll through the lovely demonstration landscape.  

The best times to view the manatees are between the months of November and March, when cooler Gulf of Mexico temperatures force the animals into the canal. During hot summers, many manatees seek refuge in cooler Gulf waters. They have no specific breeding season, so you have a good chance of seeing a manatee calf any month of the year.

The park is open year-round, every day until sunset. Except for a small parking fee, there is no entry fee. Visit the gift shop and visitors’ center on-site. 


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Orange River Oasis - 3 Br Home
Orange River Oasis - 3 Br Home

Orange River Oasis - 3 Br Home

4619 Little River Ln, Fort Myers, FL
     
    3.5 out of 5.0

    Situated in Fort Myers, this golf vacation home is 2.4 mi (3.8 km) from Manatee Park and within 6 mi (10 km) of Lee Civic Center and Burroughs Home. Centennial Park and Edison and Ford Winter Estates are also within 9 mi (15 km).

    Three Bedroom 3 Bath Home With Sunset View of Lake and Golf Course
    Three Bedroom 3 Bath Home With Sunset View of Lake and Golf Course

    Three Bedroom 3 Bath Home With Sunset View of Lake and Golf Course

    Fort Myers, FL
       
      0.0 out of 5.0

      Situated in Fort Myers, this vacation home is 1.1 mi (1.7 km) from Manatee Park and 2.7 mi (4.4 km) from Lee Civic Center. Centennial Park and Edison and Ford Winter Estates are also within 9 mi (15 km).

      Lovely and Comfortable Condo in Beautiful Gated Community of Verandah
      Reviewed on 3 Mar. 2019
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      Lovely and Comfortable Condo in Beautiful Gated Community of Verandah

      Lovely and Comfortable Condo in Beautiful Gated Community of Verandah

      Fort Myers, FL
         
        4.7 of 5
        0.0 out of 5.0

        Had a great stay in this beautifully furnished condo. Very spacious, immaculately finished, and tastefully decorated. Easy walk to neighborhood pool where everyone was welcoming and friendly. Verandah is a terrific community with 2 great golf courses, fine dining, tennis, and a complete workout center. ...

        Comfort Inn Fort Myers Northeast C$112
        Reviewed on 19 Mar. 2019
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        Comfort Inn Fort Myers Northeast

        Comfort Inn Fort Myers Northeast

        4171 Boatways Rd, Fort Myers, FL
           
          3.7 of 5
          2.5 out of 5.0

          Breakfast was great. We were happy with the size of our room. Overall, it was pretty clean. There were a few issues: slow drain on kitchenette sink, light bulb out in bathroom, toilet didn't flush well, and pool wasn't clean or warm. There were lots of leaves floating in it. We were pretty happy ...

          WoodSpring Suites Fort Myers Northeast C$87
          Reviewed on 2 Mar. 2019
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          WoodSpring Suites Fort Myers Northeast

          WoodSpring Suites Fort Myers Northeast

          9701 Orange River Blvd, Fort Myers, FL
             
            2.7 of 5
            2.5 out of 5.0

            Not so good not so bad the Londre no good is too much dirty and no clean my room

            Waterfront Key West-style Secluded Home in North Fort Myers;
            Reviewed on 14 Mar. 2019
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            Waterfront Key West-style Secluded Home in North Fort Myers;

            Waterfront Key West-style Secluded Home in North Fort Myers;

            North Fort Myers, FL
               
              4.7 of 5
              0.0 out of 5.0

              We really enjoyed our stay at Captain Jake’s Crabless Shack. The house is beautiful, very clean & had all the amenities you need. We enjoyed the big spacious deck sitting out there drinking coffee in the morning & also enjoying a few cocktails in the evenings. The house is surrounded by big beautiful ...

              Private Cottage Getaway. Close to the Caloosahatchee River 1 Bedroom 1 Bath
              Reviewed on 16 Feb. 2019
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              Private Cottage Getaway. Close to the Caloosahatchee River 1 Bedroom 1 Bath

              Private Cottage Getaway. Close to the Caloosahatchee River 1 Bedroom 1 Bath

              Fort Meyers, FL
                 
                4.7 of 5
                0.0 out of 5.0

                Nice, clean little condo, good value for the money, convenient to I-75, could use some minor updating but I enjoyed staying there,

                Quiet, Picturesque Living Close to Downtown Fort Myers
                Reviewed on 18 Dec. 2018
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                Quiet, Picturesque Living Close to Downtown Fort Myers

                Quiet, Picturesque Living Close to Downtown Fort Myers

                Fort Myers, FL
                   
                  4.3 of 5
                  0.0 out of 5.0

                  We really enjoyed our week at the River District. We enjoyed walking along the river and the shaded trees in the neighbourhood. The unit was very clean and nicely decorated, everything we needed from kitchen to bathroom to BBQ. Russ and Linda were always on hand to help when needed. We would be more ...