Can’t get enough of shows like “Swamp People”? Would you love to see what the swamp, and the critters who call it home, are really like? This thirty-minute ride takes you on an in-depth tour of Everglades National Park, in the capable hands of an experienced captain. Riding high on a traditional Florida airboat, you’ll be in a perfect position to look down on the swamp below and spot countless alligators in their natural habitat. Bring plenty of sunblock and your camera! After your ride has concluded, you’ll head back to the park to explore the park’s wildlife exhibits and see reptiles and swamp critters, up close, and have the chance to learn more about them.
What will you see at Sawgrass Recreation Park?
Reptiles! See a Florida Alligator up-close…but not just any alligator. We’re talking about Cannibal, the 1,000 lb resident gator at Sawgrass. Did you know that the alligator is considered to be an original dinosaur? Sawgrass’ exhibit features dozens of species of this ferocious swamp creature, both native and exotic to Florida. This exhibit also houses shy turtles (their shells really come in handy in these swamps), and a water monitor named Mona, who was adopted from the Wildlife Care Center in Fort Lauderdale. You’ll have the chance to hold some of the animals and pose for photo opps at the “Hold a Baby Gator” experience. The park also is home to Handsome and Peanut, the resident iguanas, who love to hang out and eat berries, star fruit and papaya. The staff regularly mists them off with a hose (simulating their natural environment). Watch them as they close their eyes and enjoy the shower! Very cute.
“Glades Exhibit” start off by watching the "Our Everglades Story" in which you will learn the history of the Glades and the importance of the conservation efforts. You will see and interact with a whole farmyard of interesting creatures, including three massive pot-bellied pigs: Jack, Wilbur and Lefty. They will eat nearly anything and are just waiting to be fed. Their usual diet consists of apples, green beans, lettuce, tomatoes, strawberries, bananas, mangoes, watermelon and mushrooms…quite a healthy diet, considering the size of these piggies! Sawgrass also houses Peking ducks: Afro, Aflack, Joey, Chandler, and their adorable babies, John, Roosevelt and Lily. They can be seen following each other around and eating wheat, greens and berries. Queenie, Jimmy and Timmy are Sawgrass’ loveable bunnies (Himalayan rabbits, to be specific) who were also adopted from the Wildlife Care Center. And if that’s not enough, you’ll also see chickens, roosters and three gorgeous peacocks, Ed Max and Penelope.
The tours start after 9:00 am each day and continue every 20-30 minutes throughout the day until 3:30 pm with a final airboat tour at 5:00 pm when the animal exhibits close.
Everglades Theater: 10:00 am, 11:30 am, 1:00 pm, and 2:30 pm
Wildlife Outpost: 10:30 am, 12:00 noon, 1:30 pm, 3:00 pm, and 4:30 pm
Gator Talk: 11:00 am, 12:30 pm, 2:00 pm, 3:30 pm, and 4:10 pm