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J.N. (Ding) Darling National Wildlife Refuge

Address: One Wildlife Drive, Sanibel Island, FL
Phone Number: 239 472 1100
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88%
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: National Parks, Nature/ Wildlife Areas, State Parks, Nature & Parks
Activities: Birdwatching, Viewing wildlife, Kayaking
Owner description: Established in 1945, this wildlife refuge occupies one-third of Sanibel Island and is a prime spot...
More attraction details
Attraction details
Type: National Parks, Nature/ Wildlife Areas, State Parks, Nature & Parks
Activities: Birdwatching, Viewing wildlife, Kayaking
Owner description: Established in 1945, this wildlife refuge occupies one-third of Sanibel Island and is a prime spot for birdwatching.

Hotels near J.N. (Ding) Darling National Wildlife Refuge

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2,044 reviews from our community

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English first
Florida
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
4 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2015 NEW

Worth the visit!! Love the birds, one way loop, visitor center!! Watch the tide charts and visit at low tide for more wildlife

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Asheville, North Carolina
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2015 NEW

the birds are not afraid of human and if you walk slowly they will just move out of the way instead of flying off

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GRAND JUNCTION
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
6 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2015 NEW

We had a great time her both in Tarpon Bay and on the nature drive. On the nature drive, you really want to go at low tide otherwise you won't see as many birds. We did see some alligators and other critters. We did the drive every day for the week we were on Sanibel. Realize the it is difficult... More 

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Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
17 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2015 NEW via mobile

a great way for visitors to have a mangrove experience. Visit the interpretive center for educational exhibits. Accessible for everyone, drive yourself, ride the tram, bicycle, or walk. You will be able to see many birds, and possibly an alligator. We took our kayaks and launched into the mangroves and paddled to Pine Island Sound and back. Got lost several... More 

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kentucky
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
20 attraction reviews
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2015 NEW

We visited the J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge on our recent trip to Sanibel Island. The first time we were there my Mom and I took the tram. It was nice to have the tour guide tell us about the different kinds of birds and some of the history of the refuge. It made the experience more meaningful than... More 

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Toronto
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2015 NEW

So far we have only done this 5 mile drive. Twice. It took us over 2 hours both times. You are in and out of your car constantly to see and photograph things. The second time we saw many roseate spoonbills which was quite a thrill.

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Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2015 NEW

First, my wife and I are not "birders", not even beginners but we always enjoy this drive. Just saw flocks of white pelicans and pink roseate spoonbills and solo great blue heron yesterday (jan 23rd). Stop anywhere and look. Binoculars helpful (for the nesting hawks) but not necessary. Several short hikes available for exercise but most birds can be seen... More 

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Minnesota
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
46 attraction reviews
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2015 NEW

This is not to be missed. You can follow the roads (stopping at many points to view the beauty), walk, or ride your bike (bring your own or rent elsewhere...they don't rent bikes here). Don't forget your binoculars. This place is spectacular!

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Uhrichsville, Ohio
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
13 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2015 NEW

We drove through, walked through, bicycled through, boated through and kayaked through the refuge; every trip was awesome in it's own respect. Each time we saw a wide variety of wildlife. The guided tours were particularly enjoyable and educational - the pontoon boat and kayak outing. We learned a great deal about the area, it's history, flora, fauna ... just... More 

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2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2015 NEW

Visited Ding Darling on MLK day where admission was free. Many people were there visiting that day. Bikers, walkers and people driving through. We drove through stopping often and getting out of the car and walking to see the various sites. Come with binoculars or a camera with a good lense for picture taking. Beautiful wildlife. Best to visit during... More 

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Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of J.N. (Ding) Darling National Wildlife Refuge and other visitors
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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?