Everglades Eco Adventure: 2-Hour Sawgrass Recreation Park
- Valid: 1 day
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Perfect trip for those who want just a sip of the Everglade experience but don't have a whole lot of time. It's taking quite a while to get there, with an extra stop in Miami (from Miami Beach (also, the trip was overbooked, so not everyone in Miami fit on the bus. The driver called in for backup, wasn't his fault, but bad experience for those people nonetheless). Arriving at the Everglades we got some time to look around then hopped on our airboat with about 30 people. We had an amazing captain/guide who was resourceful, great at storytelling and entertaining. He made us actively look with him to search for alligators and we got to see quite a few. The boat ride was just short of half an hour, which was perfect. After that, we got to see the little alligator show where they explained more. That was interesting, but not so special. On the ride back, the bus started leaking water on the inside (probably A, which was a very unpleasant experience for us. Overall great experience.
-Everglades Holiday Park, The park is currently under construction so it felt a little Tiger Kingy like when we arrived, but everything was very professional when you got a closer look -Airboat Ride, we had a great guide that spotted multiple gators for us and informed us about everything, he circled back so both sides of the boat saw the wildlife multiple times. Some other boats just sped along though, so your luck really just depends on your guide. -Gator show, was a little rushed. Only like 10 minutes long, only 2 tricks performed but pretty informative. -Bus, Our instructions said to meet at Soundscape park, so we took an Uber from Bayside Marketplace to Soundscape, only to be informed we were picking up the other half of our group from Bayside Marketplace. That wasn't an option when we booked our tour. The bus was cold like all the other reviews say. I'm pretty sure our bus driver left people behind since they weren't back to the bus in time. So pay attention to the time.
After a false start when the bus doors would not shut and a long delay without any communication from the tour operators and we were left in limbo we eventually changed bus much to the annoyance of the travellers on the second bus who were required to get off so that those on the first bus could get on and start our tour (first come first served) we then started our tour which turned out to be a drive to the Everglades park a 30 minute airboat ride which was enjoyable followed by a 15 minute alligator show which was not very active followed by a drive back to South Beach. So an apparent 4 hour tour was cut short by nearly an hour because of the problems with the bus
The tour itself was good, the bus was on time, etc. but the bus was a little bit older which wasn’t a problem for me, it was just a little bit annoying that water from the air condition dropped on some of the seats and the I couldn’t really understand the bus driver over the microphone, no sure if that was fault the bus or if the driver was mumbling... But all in all everything was good.
This was an excellent trip. The guide took time to explain many details about the Everglades including local history and current environmental concerns. We were able to see many birds and alligators whilst on the air boat. The only downside, was that the map showed the bus pick up point as about 100m from the actual stop which caused some confusion for ourselves and the other guests.