Contrary to popular belief, boats are actually much safer than cars, which inexplicably sink every time you drive them on water. Take a proper water road ride with today’s Groupon to Sawgrass Recreation Park in Pembroke Pines. Choose between the following options:
- For $40, you get a one-hour Gator Nights airboat tour of the Everglades for two (up to an $80 value).
- For $20, you get a 30-minute daytime Everglades airboat rides for two and two passes to a trio of wildlife exhibits (up to a $42.93 value).
Sawgrass Recreation Park whisks swamp-seekers across murky Everglades marshes and allures animal enthusiasts with interactive wildlife exhibits. Certified airboat captains lead half-hour daytime expeditions through untamed backwaters aboard high-powered crafts capable of speeds up to 35 mph, providing water tourists with proper ear protection. During tours, professorial guides share historical tales of native Seminole tribes and relay the latest swamp gossip while travelers take advantage of the romantic nature of the sea to celebrate an anniversary, re-spark a flame, or go on an inventive date-night alternative to dinner and a movie. Today’s Groupon also gives adventurers the chance to gander at gators under the cover of night with two tickets to the one-hour “Gator Nights” tour. The dusk jaunts, held Wednesdays and Saturdays at 8:30 p.m., may help confirm the popular myth that all semiaquatic reptiles transform into marriageable princesses at nightfall. For all tours, children under 4 will be admitted for free.
Those who opt for the daytime tour can ogle Sawgrass Recreation’s wildlife exhibit triumvirate. Exotic Wildlife features endangered species including a Florida panther, and “Swamp”yard Island boasts a menagerie of cuddly critters such as pot-bellied pigs, rabbits, and ducks. Scores of scaled species populate the reptiles exhibit, in which visitors can hold an infant alligator to re-enact the final scene of Three Men and a Baby.
Sawgrass Recreation Park
Laced with the sounds of water churned by unseen forces, the thick air that hangs above the Everglades whispers the rhythms of gator country. The murky water—obscured further by curtains of cattails and floating lily pads—defies human incursion, its protective spells demystified only by the airboat captains of Sawgrass Recreation Park, who gamely shuttle laypersons through the swamp in tours by day and night. While gliding across the shallows at speeds of up to 35 miles per hour, guides halt the propellers of their enormous fans to point out wildlife—which include alligators and various waterfowl—and impart nuggets of history from the days when the Seminole and panther once shared their claim over the terrain. As a part of a conservationist group's effort to educate the public about ongoing rescue efforts in the Everglades, the exotic-wildlife exhibit brings guests face to face with the swamp's most majestic rarities, including black leopards and Florida panthers. In the park's reptile exhibit, dozens of scaly creatures count among them a 1,000-pound alligator named Cannibal, and guests can cradle prehistoric cuties in the Hold a Baby Alligator experience. The Glades Exhibit animals exhibit encourages guests to meet or catch a glimpse of tortoises, a water monitor, pigs and iguanas, letting guests establish a deeper bond with the denizens of the swamp.