Sawgrass Recreation Airboat Everglades Tours
Feel the excitement and learn the history of Florida’s most remarkable treasure, the Everglades, at Sawgrass Recreation Park. Located in the heart of Fort Lauderdale, this family owned and operated business offers more than just airboats and alligators. With different tour options, including daytime and nighttime airboat rides, animal exhibits, group activities and corporate events, fishing and camping, there is something for everyone to enjoy at Sawgrass Recreation Park.
What started in 1971 as a fishing camp, Sawgrass began its airboat Everglades tours in 1988 when former owner Tom Baker took over. The devastating effects of Hurricane Wilma in October 2005 left the park in disarray. In November 2005, current owners Rick and Susan Soverns took on the challenge of rebuilding boats and restoring the park. After just 6 weeks the park re-opened and to this day they continue to maintain and expand to accommodate the ever-growing crowds each year.
Catch a glimpse of endangered wildlife as you glide across the swamps at speeds of up to 50 miles per hour on the airboat Everglades tours. The standard 30-minute ride brings you into the open swampland of the Everglades, guided by a trained and experienced captain. As you embark on the hunt for alligators and other native species including egrets, hawks, turtles and many species of fish, you will also learn about the diverse ecosystem. Your captain will also explain the history of how the area has progressed over the years and the importance the preservation of this area is to the animals and the state itself.
For a more exclusive experience, you can also book a private airboat adventure. This tour will escort just your party on an extended one-hour airboat ride giving you more opportunities to see an abundance of animals, up close and personal. You will get to journey into more secluded locations within the Everglades ecosystem and have a greater chance to see a wider variety of the plant and wildlife population that thrives in “The River of Grass”.
Everglades Exhibits and Presentations
Along with each daytime airboat tour, you can also walk through our three animal exhibits, but this is not your ordinary petting zoo. Our Alligator and reptile exhibit gets you up close and personal with the “Hold a baby alligator” experience in which you can snap a photo of yourself or a loved one holding one of the smaller gators. We also feature a variety of snakes such as pythons and boas, lizards, and even feisty crocodiles and caimans.
While at Sawgrass, don’t miss out on the “Swamp” Yard exhibit. You and your family can interact with and even feed animals in the exhibit that features pot-bellied pigs, peking ducks, bunnies, peacocks as well as a variety of chickens and parrots.
Explore your wild side with the “Red Eye” airboat rides. This private adventure is kicked up a notch as you and your family seek out the telltale red glow of the alligator’s eyes deep in the night. This one hour adventure lets you discover the mysteries of this rich river when your group glides through the Everglades and experiences the thrill of the abundant wildlife and explores the sights and sounds of these nocturnal giants. The rising popularity of the “Red Eye” tour brought about a more affordable option with the “Gator Nights” group nighttime tour held every Wednesday and Saturday night.
Sawgrass Recreation Park can accommodate more than just families on vacation. Broward County School Board approved for water-related activities, many schools from all over South Florida choose Sawgrass for educational field trips. Not only do the children get to experience the thrilling airboat adventure, but our animal handlers make sure they learn all about the ecosystem and the endangered species we have on display.
With islands located on the premises for camping purposes, Boy and Girl Scout troops have often utilized the park to earn badges and gain knowledge of the Everglades by doing special projects. Boy scouts trying to earn the Eagle Scout title have built information signs and lavish enclosures for newly adopted animals at Sawgrass. With fishing opportunities, nature walk areas and primitive camping experiences, the park hit on all notes for these young adventurers!
Corporate outings utilize our Pavilion Island to host team building activities and luncheons surrounded by the Everglades. With unique packages that allow for different levels of customization with the airboat adventure, Sawgrass can fit any time frame and any budget. Larger conventions are entertained with ease, as the park can accommodate up to 300 passengers per hour on the airboats. Both daytime and nighttime options are available and the possibilities are endless.
Sawgrass Recreation Park has teamed up with three area hotels, the Hyatt Regency Bonaventure Conference Center and Spa, the Hyatt Place Ft. Lauderdale Airport South, and the Hyatt Summerfield Suites Ft. Lauderdale Airport South to provide filming accessibility for eco-friendly productions. Sawgrass Recreation Park has hosted a number of film and tape productions including: ABC Network’s, “Ocean Mysteries with Jeff Corwin,” Animal Planet’s, “Swamp Wars,” Logo Network’s, “Bump,” Telemundo Network, WTVJ-TV/NBC’s campaign, “I am Miami,” among many others.
As you can see Sawgrass Recreation Park is the ultimate Everglades destination for adventurers of all ages. From families to corporate outings, our expansive facility allows you to make your experience custom tailored to your every wish. Come spend the day and indulge in fishing, a picnic lunch, animal encounters, nature bonding, and the best airboat rides in Florida!