Anhinga Trail, Everglades
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The Anhinga Trail is fun because there is a lot of wildlife beside it. Even if you don't see alligators, you will most certainly see and hear something. The craziest sounding animals are the pig frogs, which grunt away as you walk along. We saw an alligator hiding in the vegetation, but were a bit disappointed that we didn't see the zillions of alligators that other people talk about. One sketchy thing is that you would not be protected from the alligators because not all of the pathway is raised up above the water.
You walk a cement path with no shade to wooden boardwalks that take you over the water amongst the saw grass and mangroves. A large wooden platform in the middle with a wooden shade creates a nice spot to rest and listen to the pig frogs before you continue on. It is very hot and bright at the Anhinga Trail- bring sunscreen, hats, the works! And come early or late in the day. We thought coming at noon in full sun would increase our chances of seeing alligators but that was not the case. Not sure what conditions the elusive critters prefer.
There is a nice gift shop at the Royal Palm Visitor Center at the beginning of the trail. You follow road signs to the Royal Palm Visitor center to get to the trail.
At the parking lot, there are free plastic car covers to use if you are worried that vultures might eat the rubber around your car windows. We took our chances and our car was ok!
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The Anhinga Trail is located at the Royal Palm Visitor Center. The road to the Royal Palm Visitor Center starts at Ernest Coe Visitor
Center, which is the main visitor center for the eastern side of the
Everglades. From there it's a 5 minute drive to the Royal Palm Visitor Center.
From the Florida Turnpike, take Hwy 821 toward Homestead. After 46 miles, the freeway ends and you take the U.S. Hwy 1 exit. Turn right on 344th Street/ E. Palm Dr. After 1 1/2 miles, turn left at the Robert is Here Stand and then after 2 miles, turn right on State Road 9336. There are plenty of signs to Everglades National Park so it won't be a problem finding it.
It costs $10 per car to enter the park.
This is an interactive map, you can zoom and move it.
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