Manatees are a huge part of my city tour from November to April. 6 spots along my standard city tour usually have manatees in the winter. One spot is great for watching a family swim under the bridge, another spot gets so close you could almost touch.
This has been a horrible year for Florida’s manatee population, estimated to be 6500 manatees. 2018 has already seen 715 deaths, most due to the toxic algae from Naples to Tampa. Manatees coming to Miami this winter should not be as affected by the toxic algae, so we should continue seeing plenty all winter.
Manatees in the Everglades are seen from farther away, sometimes our boat captain follows the mud trail manatees leave behind while chewing up the seagrass. Sometimes manatees can be found keeping warm in rivers when the Gulf gets real cold.
For maximum manatee pleasure, schedule your city tour for optimum tidal conditions by calling a few days beforehand.