If you have been following along, you have probably figured out by now that I am just obsessed with alligators! My birthday was in February and all I wanted to do was go on the Lake Apopka Wildlife Drive in Apopka, Florida and my wish came true(my husband also spoiled me with several other things including some Star Wars toys).
The Wildlife Drive is only about half an hour or so from Orlando (obviously depending on traffic!) so if you are visiting that area this should be on your ‘must-see’ list! It is 11 miles long and takes about 3 hours or so depending on how many times you stop. There are no opportunities for an early exit so keep that in mind.
As you can see from the photos in the gallery above, the trail is is a dirt trail and if you are stopping there is usually plenty of room to just pull off on the side. There are also a few different specific areas for parking throughout the trail and there are restrooms as well at some of them. And by restrooms I mean portable ones. They are kept in good condition but just be aware and it wouldn’t hurt to keep extra TP or wipes in your vehicle just in case.
I know those galleries look like a lot of photos but I took hundreds while we were there. There is no shortage of great wildlife photograph opportunities for people of all levels of photography. While I was mostly focused on the alligators, there are also thousands and thousands of birds so if you are not so much into the apex predators there is still enjoyment to be had.
It IS pet friendly and we did bring our poodle with us but I would just really advise you to be extra careful because you never know where alligators are going to be and it is an area where they are plentiful. So make sure they are kept on a shorter leash and please also pick up after them and remember to bring water for them as well.
There are trails for hiking and biking as well if that is more your speed. I believe the bike trail goes up to 20 miles and we saw dozens of people out on their bicycles.
I haven’t mentioned the best part of this unique experience yet. Are you ready? It’s FREE!!! Normally I think that you get what you pay for, but in this instance you get much much more. We brought drinks and snacks and just made an entire afternoon of it.
Have you ever been on the Apopka Wildlife Drive? Let me know in the comments what you thought about your own experience.