Skip Navigation

Everglades National Park

Travel Guide North America USA Southern United States Florida South Florida Everglades National Park

edit

Introduction

Everglades Gatorade

Everglades Gatorade

© All Rights Reserved zmey

The Everglades encompasses an area of marshland taking up most of the south of Florida. It is a popular tourist destination and the park plays a unique part in local folklore, with legends of moon shiners, smugglers and alligators. The Everglades National Park takes up much of the region. It protects the southern 20% of the original Everglades. In the United States, it is the largest subtropical wilderness, the largest wilderness of any kind east of the Mississippi River, and is visited on average by one million people each year. It is the third-largest national park in the lower 48 states after Death Valley and Yellowstone. It has been declared an International Biosphere Reserve, a World Heritage Site, and a Wetland of International Importance, one of only three locations in the world to appear on all three lists.

Top

edit

Cities

  • Everglades City - near the Gulf Coast Visitor Center at the western side of the park
  • Florida City - near the eastern entrance and Ernest Coe Visitor Center
  • Homestead - adjacent to Florida City, also a good base

Top

edit

Geography

Everglades National Park covers 6,110 km2, throughout Dade, Monroe, and Collier counties in Florida. The Everglades are a subtropical wetland, and because of that most of the land is very flat and not high above sea-level. The elevation typically ranges from 0 2.4 metres above sea level, but a Calusa-built shell mound on the Gulf Coast rises 6.1 metres above sea level.

Top

edit

Weather

The Everglades, like the rest of (southern) Florida has a warm and humid subtropical climate. The warmest season lasts from May to October when temperatures frequently hit more than 30 °C while nights are balmy and mostly around or above 20 °C. Temperatures and humidity combined can feel oppressive though and it's not the best time for a visit as this is also the season when most of the rain falls and hurricanes may strike Florida as well. From November onwards things start to improve and the dry season lasts into May. Although temperatures drop and it might not always be beach weather, this is a good time for visiting the park.

Top

edit

Sights and Activities

  • Shark Valley - offering tram tours and bicycles for rent to cover the tarmac route into the park.
  • Anhinga Trail - just inside the park's eastern entrance, offering the best walk in the park. Many birds and alligators.
  • Flamingo boat tours - going into the park but also more into open waters if possible.
  • 10,000 islands boat tours - from Gulf Coast Visitor Center.

Top

edit

Opening Hours

Everglades National park is open 365 days a year, 24 hours a day. Ernest Coe Visitor Center is open from 9:00am to 5:00pm. between mid-April and mid-December. The hours of operation between mid-December through mid-April are 8:00am to 5:00pm. The main entrance (Homestead/Florida City), is open 24 hours a day. Shark Valley entrance off of Tamiami Trail/US 41, is open daily from 8:30am to 6:00pm.
Gulf Coast entrance south of the intersection of Tamiami Trail/US 41 and Route 29, is open 24 hours.

Top

edit

Cost

  • Private vehicle - $10.00 - Good for 7 consecutive days at all park entrances.
  • Pedestrian/Cyclist - $5.00 - Good for 7 consecutive days at all park entrances. Admits one individual when entering by foot, bicycle, or motorcycle. Individuals 16 years old and younger, are admitted free of charge.
  • Everglades National Park Annual Pass - $ 25.00 - Valid for 12 months from the date of purchase for unlimited visits to the park. It admits the purchaser and any accompanying persons in a single, private, non-commercial vehicle, or the purchaser and accompanying immediate family (spouse, children, parents) when entry is by other means (bicycle, foot, and boat).

Top

edit

Getting There

By Plane

The nearest (international) airport is at Miami. Naples offers some flights as well.

By Car

Several routes run into and across the Everglades. Interstate-75 runs east-west from Fort Lauderdale to the western coast around Naples, but this is not the best route to take, unless you are in hurry. It also runs a bit too much to the north to actually enjoy the natural surroundings. A much better alternative is route 90 that crosses the Everglades much more to the south. To add, it also crosses the Big Cypress National Preserve and the Fakahatchee Strand Preserve State Park. The road starts just west of Miami.

Top

edit

Getting Around

By Car

Driving through the park can be an exciting experience. Try and go on a week day during work hours so it isn't busy, and keep an eye out for crocodiles sunning themselves on the tarmac! Also be aware that when you stop-off at one of the designated rest-areas, and take a walk on the wooden boardwalks over the marshes, you will get swarmed by mosquitos.

By Boat

From the Gulf Coast Visitor Center, there are trips by boat into the 10,000 islands area. From Flamingo, there are trips almost every hour that last about 1 hour and 45 minutes and travel up the Everglades to a lake and back. The traditional airboat tours are not available inside the park itself, but are on offer on the road between Miami and Naples. One of the oldest and best is at Coopertown.

Top

edit

Eat

There are few options inside the park, though there is a decent snack restaurant at Flamingo, opening around 11:00am daily.

Top

edit

Drink

At visitor centers and Flamingo there are usually some shops to buy drinks.

Top

edit

Sleep

There is a wide range of accommodation options in towns and cities at the edges of the park, including Everglades City, Naples, Florida City and Homestead.

PropertyAddressTypePopularity
Everglades Hostel & Tours20 Southwest Second Ave EvergladesHostel-

Contributors

as well as Kieran-M (7%), dr.pepper (4%)

Help contribute to this article to share the ad revenue.

Everglades National Park Travel Helpers

We don't currently have any Travel Helpers for Everglades National Park

This is version 12. Last edited at 9:13 on Mar 29, 13 by Utrecht. 8 articles link to this page.

Creative Commons License
Except where otherwise noted, content of this article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License