Gatorland: More Than Just A Gator Park

alligators

Gatorland, more than just a gator park. Experience Screamin’ Gator Zip Line an Orlando top attraction voted the best zip line in the USA. The newest experience is the Stompin’ Gator Off-Road Adventure fun for the whole family.

Back in 1949 Florida was crawling with alligators, the original locals. You would see them basking by the sides of the road. Now the best place to see gators are in a sanctuary such as this. Once an endangered species, now over 2,000 American Alligators call Gatorland home. That’s why Gatorland is known as the “Alligator Capital Of The World”.

But it’s not just about alligators. There’re crocodiles, wild cats, birds, snakes, tortoises, and other critters. There’s a free-flight aviary, petting zoo, animal shows, and zip lines. Downhome family fun including a nature walk, along with a kids splash area.

History

Gatorland is a 110-acre theme park and wildlife preserve that offers up old Florida charm since 1949. Gatorland was founded by Owen Godwin with the help of his wife Pearl. It is still owned by his family today. Orlando’s very first top attraction. We are talking pre-Disney Florida here folks.

Shows

Alligators: Legends of the Swamp you’ll watch as handlers wrestle one of the scaly beasts. You can have a once in a lifetime opportunity to get real close and personal with a gator if you’d like. Additional charges apply for the Meet-A-Gator experience.

Up Close Encounters Show is where you will get up close and personal with other creatures that call Gatorland home.

Gator Jumparoo Show is where the gators leap for lunch.  Good ole family fun for the whole family.

Animals

Besides the American alligators, you don’t want to miss the White Gator Swamp for the rare leucistic and albino alligators. Or, the Baby Gator Marsh for the smallest of the alligators located here.

As mentioned, not just gators but crocs are here too. Jungle Crocs Of The World is where you will find Nile, Cuban, and Saltwater crocodiles. These guys will be found sunning on the banks of the lakes. Don’t miss the giant American crocodile, Bonecrusher.

Since the late 50s, you have always found giant tortoises here. Today is no different. You can meet and interact with Lucy a Galapagos tortoise, Dean an Aldabra Giant tortoise, and Kendrick the Sulcata African Spurred tortoise. Ranging from 200-500 pounds.

Snakes, scorpions, toads, and lizards can be found at the Mile of Monsters. You can also meet and learn about them at the Up-Close Encounters Show.

Prefer cats to snakes? You may not have known it but big cats can be found here at Gatorland. You can meet Florida Panthers, Neiko and Lucy. Actually a cross between Florida Panther and a Texas Cougar. Osceola and Abiaka call Bobcat Bayou their home.

Last but not least, are the birds. Say hello to the resident Amazon Parrots, Macaws, and Cockatoos over at Parrot Playground. Or, the hundreds of budgerigars “budgies” that perch and can be feed by you at the Very Merry Aviary. Flamingos, emus, owls, egrets, herons, the list goes on. More birds arrive during nesting season to seek the protection the alligators provide.

Optional Add-Ons

Screamin’ Gator Zip Line

Screamin’ Gator Zip Line is for the brave. It’s a 1200 feet long journey. Launching from heights of up to 65 feet with amazing views of the crocodiles and the Alligator Breeding Marsh. Zipping up to 30 miles per hour. Experience five intense zip lines ranging in length from 230 feet to more than 500 feet. Fair warning there’s a swinging bridge. Those freak me out.

Includes all-day admission into Gatorland
Reservations are required
Participants must be at least 37″ tall, weigh less than 275 lbs.

Gator Gauntlet Zip Line

Gator Gauntlet Zip Line is a single and accessible zip line. So guests with mobility challenges can also enjoy zip-lining. Only at Gatorland in Orlando. You’ll fly 350 feet while above the Alligator Breeding Marsh.

Participants must be at least 48″ tall, weigh less than 275 lbs.

Stompin’ Gator Off-Road Adventure

Stompin’ Gator Off-Road Adventure and Gator Joe’s Adventure Outpost are the newest attractions. You will board one of three, custom-made, off-road monster vehicles for an adventure you won’t find at any other theme park. You’ll experience Florida’s natural beauty while running alongside the swamps. Of course, you will experience lots of alligators.

These vehicles are named after iconic real alligators and crocodiles at Gatorland, including Bonecrusher, Cannibal Jake, and Swamp Ghost. Each has a story of their own, so ride one or choose all three.

Adventure Hour

Speaking of getting up close and personal. How close do you want to be? Do you want to go to the swamp and actually feed the alligators? You can, and have your picture taken with them. Tour offered once daily. This is a top attraction so allow plenty of time.

Gator Night Shine

When the sun goes down the swamp comes to life. Venture into the marsh with only a flashlight and a few hot dogs. Hot dogs, what? You are over alligator-infested waters. See their eyes glowing red. Feed them, keep them happy.

Tours operate on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday year-round.
Reservations are required.

Trainer For A Day

Learn what it’s like to work around dangerous animals. You’ll be up close with some of their largest alligators and crocodiles. Even hold a baby alligator while meeting some of the creepy crawlers from the Up Close Encounters Show. I saved the best for last. You will work alongside a trainer in the Gator Wrestling Arena. Oh My!

Ages 12 on up
Gatorland admission is included.
Reservations required.

Photographers Pass

Photo by Wisterias Web

For the bird watchers and photographer. Discover over 20 different species of birds, many of which are listed as Endangered or Species of Special Concern. The Gatorland Bird Rookery is one of the largest rookeries in the state of Florida. All birding enthusiasts will want to take part in this incredible chance to observe them up close.

Only offered from February through Mid June on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

In Conclusion

Come experience the real Florida at Gatorland. Dubbed as Orlando’s best half-day attraction. I can’t argue with them there.   Gatorland combines nature, wildlife, and good old-fashioned family fun.

 

 

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