During our Florida beach vacation, we decided we needed a beach break, and booked short afternoon tour to the Everglades to do some gator spotting. We booked our tour through the hotel and it just happened to be with the Everglades Holiday Park, which is the Gator Rescue owned by the Gator Boys from the TV show of the same name.
It was so hot, but I just can't bring self to complain about that! We got a chance to check out the gift shop, and then hopped on the airboat, with captain Dylan. We were pretty impressed with how fast those things actually go, and how fun it was!
We spotted our first gator just a few minutes in, which I was actually a little surprised about. For some reason I was kind of expecting that we wouldn't see anything. He stayed a pretty decent distance from us and was gone in just a few seconds. This was my first "in the wild" gator so I was pretty pumped!
This dragonfly took a liking to me and did not want to get off my foot.
The captain pulled up to an area with a bunch of weeds and trees and introduced us to these beautiful birds called Purple Gallinule. The were sort of his pets, and they had just had some babies. He pulled out a bag of white cheddar SmartPop and the birds went crazy. Apparently this is their favorite snack. They would take it right out of his hand and seemed to love the attention from everyone on the boat.
Our second gator sighting came a few minutes later and I'm pretty sure this one wanted to eat us. He kept following us and I swear he was eyeing me up. He almost came right up to the boat so we got some great pictures.
After about an hour out on the water, we headed back to shore, and into the actual rescue. None of the guys from the show were there, but our female gator wrestler Caroline did an amazing job. We were told that the gator that she was wrestling was actually not very cooperative that day, and her anxiety was not part of the show!
We had a fantastic afternoon, and it was good to know that we were helping out a good cause as well. If you are ever in the area be sure to check it out!