The first thing on my mind when planning for a Miami trip was to tour the Everglades and catch some gator actions. I have always wanted to ride the airboat ever since I saw it in an old TV series called Everglades (circa 1961-62). I didn't realize there were so many Everglades tour to choose from. After long hours of reading the reviews and searching for deals, I decided to choose Gator Park.
For obvious reasons, Gator Park offers cheaper admission if you buy their tickets online ($5 off) which makes them the cheapest admission among others, plus they provide free earplugs too (for the loud airboat engine noise). On top of this, they also have coupons on their website for some deals (including free gator tooth). If you can't get to the computer, they have coupons at the hotels too, but the coupon is only for $3 off.
If you buy the tickets online, you can pay by credit card or PayPal. I chose to pay via PayPal since I just had to click on the link and logon to PayPal without having to enter all the info needed for a credit card payment. However upon showing my receipt at the park counter, I had to wait about 15 minutes for them to verify my PayPal payment has gone through. This was not cool for me since I already have a printed receipt from PayPal showing that I have made the payment. The wait wasn't necessary at all. Finally I got the tickets after the cashier realized it was too long a wait.
The 30-minute airboat ride was really fun. Although we had our ears plugged, we could still hear the guide's loud voice explaining about the area. I was expecting a lot of gators around, but we could only see three gators during the trip. There a variety of plants around as well as herons and turtles.
The best part of the tour is the gator show where we can see this guy wrestling a gator up close. Finally we had the chance to hold a baby gator for a donation of $3. In summary, we enjoyed the tour and it was worth the $18 admission fee.
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