My Gator Tale About Wild Florida Airboat & Wildlife Park Experience
Written By: Vincent M. Agusta
Published: March 27th 2014
After enjoying a couple of days at some of Orlando’s hottest theme parks, your family is seeking an adventure. You frantically try to find something new to keep the family entertained, but you have already been there and done that. You have looked everywhere that is where your problem is. If you would have looked in the middle of nowhere, you would have found Wild Florida in Kenansville. Only in Florida would this theory make any sense, it must be something in the water. Oh I forgot to mention that something is alligators, so make sure to keep your eyes open. The drive will take you about an hour from some of the most popular Orlando Resorts, but hey that beats standing in line and hearing “Its A Small World” over and over again for the same amount of time. Sorry I am getting off topic, just having some flash backs from THAT ride.
Wild Florida offers guided Airboat tours of the swamps, marshes, and rivers that make up the Everglades. How could you not jump at this once in a life time opportunity? You basically have been training these last couple of years watching Swamp People on the History Channel, so by now you should be a pro. For those of you who are a little nervous, I can tell you this is a lot safer than driving on I4. This is an experience your family will remember for the rest of their life and you truly will enjoy it. Gliding across the water you will enjoy the natural beauty of Florida.
My girlfriend and I could not wait for this adventure to start. We sat in the boat with anticipation and put on our safety headsets to protect our ears from the fans noise. We took off jetting through the marsh grass while the Airboat was carving a new path. Then in the distance there was movement, something big was in the grass. The monster was pushing over the marsh grass like it was nothing. We were done for, it was nice knowing everyone on the boat. As I was about to say my final good byes, a cow’s head popped out. Totally unexpected to everyone on the boat, the guide explained to us a local ranch is just behind the tree line and they don’t have a fence up. The cows actually go into the marshland and graze on the vegetation; I could only imagine what would happen if we hit it. Well I guess that is an obvious answer, we would have had an epic BBQ Party at Wild Florida.
Then as we pull away from the cow, my girlfriend points in the distance and our guide yells look it’s a Gator. We stalked the Gator slowly as it was swimming out in the open a fair distance away but then in a heartbeat, it submerged and it was gone. We sat still for a little and saw another Gator swimming not too far away, but then the captain decided to head back into the tall marsh grass. While in the marsh we passed some cows again by the shore line, the captain stopped the airboat. He pointed to the tree line and it was a genuine Bald Eagle. I never seen a Bald Eagle in the wild and I was born in Florida. We actually saw a couple of them during the trip, which was totally unexpected for me and a nice treat.
As we were heading through the marsh we stumbled upon a nest of baby gators, they were everywhere. It was funny to see them jump out of the nest and into the water. One of the guests noticed the mother was not too far behind; she was laying behind the nest with her eyes barely visible above the water. We continued on our journey and learned how Gators always grow over their life span. Also, I asked how many gators can be hunted a year, after all deep fried gator is mighty tasty with petal sauce. The guide let me know that it depends on the area and you must be issued a tag by the proper authority. For that particular area, 10 tags were distributed for the season, meaning only 10 Gators could be killed in total. Out of those 10 tags, one person might be issued 2 of them which limits their hunting to only two Gators.
As guests continued to ask questions, we stumbled upon a huge alligator; it was laying out for all of us to see. We had overcast and light rains all morning, but this gigantic gator was soaking up the sun. It laid there while everyone took photos, not having a care in the world. They are so massive and look so powerful it is hard to describe in words. No one in the boat was worried at all, everyone was posing for pictures to put on their social media pages.
We headed back to the dock and thanked our guide for a great tour. As we were walking back on the pier less than a football field away from the gift shop was a gator just laying out in the sun. My girlfriend and I had a chance to explore the Wildlife Park, which was home to many animals. This part of the park is newly built, and still under some construction. We got to see a family of beautiful Zebras, Water Buffalos, Deer, Lemurs, Alligators, and much more! When in the wild life park, it feels like the peacocks are your personal escort. We had a great time, and of course we finished the day with a gator basket. The staff at Wild Florida was extremely friendly and took pride in what they do. I was very impressed with the knowledge and hospitality they offered every guest visiting the park. For more information please visit Wild Florida’s official website, http://wildfloridairboats.com/ .
My name is Vince Agusta and I am a Public Relations Manager for Trips2Florida.com. In the past, I have interviewed professional athletes, public figures, and some of the most legendary surfers of all time. I also cover professional hockey in central Florida. Now, I get to travel the Sunshine State bringing you behind the scenes to some of your favorite attractions and destinations.
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