The Everglades is probably the area of the United States that is considered the ultimate wilderness destination. After all, it is a swamp, lake, prairie, and wetlands combined into one massive area that continues in every direction for miles. Immersed into this wilderness area are numerous animals with the most prominent being the alligator.
There are so many different everglade tours to choose from, but we knew that we wanted to take an airboat for a ride. I could list all the excellent reasons as to why, but who are we kidding… we wanted a quick getaway if an alligator or two got a little too friendly nearby!
Our tour was an hour long and it began within the Sawgrass Recreation Park. The airboat that we were on could travel at up to forty miles per hour, but we didn’t keep at that speed for the duration of the tour. In fact, our guide went slowly quite often, so we didn’t miss any of the beauty that is everywhere in the Everglades.
As soon as we left the dock, we spotted our first creature. It was a sleek crocodile that I hoped would stay where it was and not crawl any closer to our boat. I am not fond of crocodiles, though we were excited about the opportunity to see the other animals out in the wild.
We couldn’t believe the views that we were able to see from the airboat, and we found that we were having trouble choosing between looking for the animals on the land and the landscape that surrounded us everywhere. It wasn’t long before we found our first gator and there were many more after that. We didn’t see any of the panthers or black leopards that live out in the wild there, but we were okay with that. We didn’t expect to see them due to the noise of the airboat.
When we arrived back at the dock, we had quite a few pictures of what we had seen out on the water, but we had one more thing left that we wanted to do. The tour group that we used had a baby alligator and we were all allowed to hold it if we wanted to. I am not always the bravest person when it comes to animals, but we both did hold the baby gator!
Now, before you get all congratulatory on me, please know that the baby’s mouth was taped shut, so it wasn’t like it could snap at me and eat our hand or other body part. This little one was fairly powerless.
I thoroughly enjoyed our time in the Everglades and I know that we will be back there soon so that we can see another area of this magnificent wilderness.