This sprawling wetland park holds a seemingly endless supply of wildlife habitats and enthralling ecosystems.
Wander through miles of Everglades National Park’s tranquil wetland in search of mangrove forests, sawgrass prairies, orchids, alligators and crocodiles. Sunbathe on white sand beaches or kayak or bicycle to wildlife habitats.
Everglades National Park is a subtropical wilderness, one of the largest national parks in mainland United States. Drive on the east-west Tamiami Trail along the park’s northern border, passing open areas of flooded woodland.
Travel by land or water inside the park to see some of the 50 reptile and 360 bird species living here. Follow the boardwalk path of the short Anhinga Trail and watch for the namesake bird with a snakelike neck. The anhinga submerges for extended periods and spears its catch with its beak.
Continue westward to Shark Valley. Behind the imposing name is a scenic 15-mile (24-kilometer) trail that takes you close to an environment of dense forest and small creeks. Spot storks and herons fishing in the shallows. Try to find both brown alligators and gray-green crocodiles lurking at the surface. The park is one of the few places on earth where the two reptiles live side by side. Look for alligator holes and nests.
Reach the Gulf Coast to find the Ten Thousand Islands. This network of tiny landmasses lies offshore from the city of Everglades on the park’s northwestern coast. Explore the shallow, blue-green passageways by kayak and find an empty beach. Pick up a tide timetable to plan your paddling to avoid strong currents or exposed oyster reefs.
Everglades National Park encompasses Florida State’s southernmost point. Enter the park via the main Florida City entrance on the southeast side of the park or entrances near Miami and the Gulf Coast. Pay an admission fee to enter the park; your pass will be valid for seven days. Visit the small towns along the eastern and western borders of the park for food and accommodations.
The U.S. national park system offers affordable outdoor adventures in a wide variety of terrains. Explore Everglades National Park, not only a fascinating wetland, but also a World Heritage Site and International Biosphere Reserve.