Gatorland….. is it worth it?

Not to start off on a negative note but the last 2 weeks it has been raining. It has been hard to plan anything because your either in a serious DOWNPOUR or your sweating from the humidity! Ahhhh the luxury of living in Florida!

So we headed over to Gatorland.  Now from the time I was just a child coming down to Florida with my parents I have always had somewhat of an obsession with gators. Those who know me may speculate that this gator-fascination stems from my love of watching “Swamp People” not true….I don’t watch it THAT often. 😀

But you have to admit there is something fascinating about them!

Not too long ago, the American Alligator was on the brink of extinction.  Through a number of conservation efforts, these amazing creatures thrive today.  Scientists believe that the American alligator is more than 150 million years old. That means that these alligators once shared the same space as dinosaurs! Even though most other species that shared breathing space with dinosaurs are now gone, the American alligator lives on. Huh! bet you didn’t know that! pretty cool right?!

So as much as I prefer actually going down to the Everglades and driving down U.S. Route 41 State Road 90  parallel  to Alligator Alley, the trail is only one lane in each direction and has no fences to keep the gators in, or better yet jumping on an airboat!  I’ll take what I can get!

ok enough about me…thats how we ended up at Gatorland…

At 110- acres, Gatorland  has thousands of alligators & crocodiles to see, an aviary, breeding marsh with observation tower, petting zoo, nature walk, gift shop and one-of-a-kind reptilian shows including the Gator Wrestlin’ Show, Gator Jumparoo and the Up-close Encounters Show.

Gator wrestling, now I’m not really fond of people sitting on the poor gators but the guys running the shows are funny and informative, they truly are having a BLAST doing what they do.

You can also take a ride on the Gatorland Express train and then head on over to Gator Gully Splash Park where kids of all ages can enjoy a good ol’ fashion squirtfest!

The thing we missed (and are going back for) is the Zipline!  Otherwise known as the Screamin’ Gator, at heights exceeding seven stories, riders zip over Orlando’s wildlife (including more than 130 gators!) on five intense zip lines at speeds of 25 miles per hour. It was closed due to the rain. 😦

We also saw the new rare white alligators on display for a limited engagement at Gatorland’s newest exhibit, White Gator Swamp. Featuring four of the world’s largest white leucistic alligators known to roam the planet, these giant Ivory colored reptiles are each ten to twelve feet in length and weigh over 800 pounds. Their piercing blue eyes are believed to have the ability to command good fortune to those lucky enough to make eye contact with the blue eyed beauties.

Yup! totally made eye contact! 😀

Overall it feels like you are in an “Old Florida” atmosphere.  So go if you like animals of any kind. It is very clean and well maintained, and the animals all appear in good health, and fortunately for the gators, well fed.

Some of the gators are so big it’s ridiculous and, scary  knowing they are underneath your feet and you can even see them gliding past the floor boards! LOVED it!

In addition to being able to see and feed Alligators, there is a huge bird sanctuary where you can literally take a photo two feet from a rare bird’s nest. Beautiful white cranes are everywhere. It is a photographer’s dream (hopefully having better weather then we had that is)

You can easily do it all in about 3-4 hours. It is a good half day trip. Five dollars worth of turkey dogs is enough for two people to feed the gators. It is a different and fun alternative to the bigger parks in the area.

Heads up  though…THIS IS A TOURIST ATTRACTION… they WANT YOUR MONEY… so bring extra as there are some cool things you need it for… Pictures with Gator, feeding hot dogs to the Gator… Pictures with snakes… oooh and you can sit on a gator too….

so to answer the question… Is it worth it? you decide 🙂

Check out all my pics…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: