USA, Florida – Everglades National Park – Home for Crocodilles
The park features other unique animals and plants. People ocme here to observe birds and catch fish. High humidity levels and high precipititaion are typical for Florida in the summer months. Hence the main season spans between November and May in Everglades. Thankfully mosquitoes won't bother you these months.
It costs 25 USD for a car to enter the park with a week-long validity. You can return there anytime you like even from a diferent direction. Also, you may stay overnight in the park in camps, some are accessible only by boat however. Two roads run there. The northwestern road runs across Everglades City (road No 29). However, the best way to experience the park is on the boat for there is not much to see if you travel by car (yet sometimes aligators can get closer to the rad). Alternatively you may travel on a canoe which brings you even closer to the wilderness. One may choose from either Halfway Creek Canoe Trail or Turner River Canoe Trail. More to the south, there is Gulf Coast visitor center. There you can ask about a boat ride through Wilderness Waterway.
Another park entrance is at Homestead in the southeast. They will recommend you to make a trip to Royal Palm, an area in the close proximity. Tourists can walk along a walkway stretching above the marshlands. Crocodilles stay in the shadows, hence look under the trees to catch a glimpse of them.
If you don't see nay crocodilles, don't worry. Businessmen made them their attraction in parks or farms. Outside the national park you can visit several farms where you can see crocodille feeding and other shows featuring trained crocodilles. At every farm, there is also a snake show. The number of choices is vast. Farms are like zoos. See their terrariums with reptiles, bird cages etc. Alligator Farm is the only farm southeast from the park unlike the north with many more farms to visit.
Special airboats are integral part of Everglades National Park. An airboat takes you on a ride on the water surface through the high grass and other plants. It rides slowly. However, it can also ride quite fast. Its propellers create considerable noise so you want to get some good headphones to cancel the noise.
It was not possible to pay for a ride on an airboat separately as it was part of the entrance ticket to the farm (27 USD). Our boat ride took about 25 minutes. More spacious pool the driver did many turns so it was quite a wet ride. So you need to take into consideration that it is really a water ride. This unique vehicle is worth of a try-out. It was fun. You get really close to crocodilles but it is safe.
Text and photos: Martina Brožková
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