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Sabal Palm Sanctuary

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Address: 8435 Sabal Palm Rd, Brownsville, TX (Formerly Sabal Palm Audubon Center and Sanctuary)
Phone Number: +1 956-541-8034
Website
Today
7:00 am - 5:00 pm
Open now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 7:00 am - 5:00 pm
Activities: Birdwatching
Description: Cradled in a bend of the Rio Grande, this 527-acre preserve is home to one...
Cradled in a bend of the Rio Grande, this 527-acre preserve is home to one of the last stands of old-growth Sabal Palm forest in the United States as well as one of the few remaining historic river plantations in the region. Over 4 miles of hiking trails lead visitors through the palm forest, wetland board walks, river observation deck, and multiple bird blinds. Green Jays and Chachalacas frequent our feeders, Armadillos rummage our trails, Least Grebes and Green Kingfishers hunt the wetlands, and Great Horned Owl calls haunt the forest. The recently restored 4,000 sq ft 1892 Rabb Plantation home now serves as our new Sabal Palm Sanctuary visitor center. Take a stroll through the grove, a short walk down to the Rio Grande, or join us for one of our guided birding walks or history tours (seasonal, typically November thru March - please call for schedule).
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 54 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 39
    Excellent
  • 11
    Very good
  • 2
    Average
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  • 0
    Terrible
An oasis not to be missed

This is a small sanctuary very close to Brownsville and the Rio Grande River that should not be missed by any birding enthusiast. Don't let the fact that you are driving through... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed March 1, 2015
happytraveler30183
,
Sioux Falls
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54 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
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English first
Sioux Falls
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
42 attraction reviews
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2015

This is a small sanctuary very close to Brownsville and the Rio Grande River that should not be missed by any birding enthusiast. Don't let the fact that you are driving through "the fence" and the sanctuary is actually outside the perimeter of the fence to put you off. We didn't arrive there until late in the morning but even... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Ha Long
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
3 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2015

I recently visited this site and was impressed with the willingness of staff to share their knowledge. Walking up the front sidewalk, there was a small scope trained on an owl in a palm tree so anyone could view. The historic home was part of a large plantation. Only a few furnishings are original and no photos are available for... More 

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Denver, Colorado
Top Contributor
145 reviews 145 reviews
18 attraction reviews
36 helpful votes 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2015

The mansion is being restored and will be worth the visit. We found the trails well marked but were disappointed that the staff knew little about them. There was no map of the property available to take on the trails and we found few birds but many mosquitoes. The feeders were stocked but bird activity was low. You will have... More 

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Mendota Heights, Minnesota
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
15 attraction reviews
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2015

Visit one of the few remaining stands of old - growth sabal palm forest. As you drive into the sanctuary your first view is a beautiful historic mansion which is fairly close to the Rio Grande River. The grounds have several trails that provide you a chance to view birds from a blind or to sit at picnic tables close... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Winchester, Virginia
Top Contributor
105 reviews 105 reviews
68 attraction reviews
85 helpful votes 85 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2015

Tucked away on the U.S./Mexican Border along the Rio Grande River, this historical plantation is really quite beautiful. What a spot! Inside the building is an information desk and a tiny gift shop that isn't really much of a gift shop--a few birding books and trinkets. There are clean restrooms, a wrap around porch, and a couple of rooms you... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
Victoria, Texas
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
18 attraction reviews
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 5, 2015

We visited this sanctuary when I was called Sabal Palm Audubon Center and Sanctuary. At that time it was a great birding place. Since then it has changed to the Gorgas Science Foundation Sabal Palm Sanctuary. It was not worth the trip or fee. The wet areas where ducks, such as the Masked duck and whistling ducks, are marshes with... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
SabalPalmSanctuary, Manager at Sabal Palm Sanctuary, responded to this review

We're very sorry you had such a disappointing visit to our Sanctuary. Your comments and concerns are valuable to us and we'd like to hear more if you're willing to share. We certainly strive to make every visitor's experience an enjoyable one and if there is an area being overlooked or neglected we'll absolutely make it right. If willing, please... More 

Boerne, Texas
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
29 attraction reviews
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2015

Walking the trails in the Sabal Palm Sanctuary is like stepping back in time. Totally wild, undeveloped, undisturbed and beautiful in a very tropical desert sort of way. The Rabb home is interesting, too. Lots of history and birding - a fun way to spend an afternoon. Recommend that you go early or late or when it is not too... More 

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Kent
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
30 attraction reviews
93 helpful votes 93 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2014

This unique forest of sabal palms and other woodland is a magnet for wildlife. A morning here exploring the different habitats looking for birds was a great treat. Green jays were in abundance at the feeders. A green kingfisher and green heron kept watch at the ponds. Hawks and warblers were to be found in their habitats. The entire area... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 3
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2014

interesting natural flauna very informative -- don't use att wireless, it will record as foreign use in mexico

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
Corpus Christi, Texas
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 attraction reviews
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 2, 2014

Went there for birding & were not disappointed. Loved speaking to the volunteer, another gentleman & visitors. Got good tips on where to go & what bird & photography books to buy. We wished we had more time. Be prepare to walk or take the trolley at its schedule.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1

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