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University of Florida Bat House

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Address: Museum Road, Near Lake Alice, Gainesville, FL 32611
Phone Number: 13522732054
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour

The University of Florida Bat Barn and Bat House are the world's largest...

The University of Florida Bat Barn and Bat House are the world's largest occupied bat houses, with an estimated population of more than 350,000. The structures are located on the north side of Museum Road between Village Drive and Radio Road across from Lake Alice on the UF campus. Parking is available in a lot just west of the bat houses near Radio Road. A sidewalk leads from the parking lot to the observation area. A UF parking decal is required Monday-Friday from 7:30 a.m to 4:30 p.m. Parking is free after 4:30 p.m. weekdays, and on weekends and state holidays.

The bats normally emerge during a 15- to 20-minute period after sunset, before total darkness on calm, warm evenings when temperatures are above 65 F. Bats may swoop near those observing the emergence to eat insects attracted to the carbon dioxide in human breath, however they will not attack or harm people when left alone. High winds, heavy rain or cold temperatures will keep the bats in the house for the evening. On warm winter evenings, the bats may come out for a drink of water at the lake and exercise; however they can eat only when bugs are flying.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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    Very good
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Awesome sight!

I love to take my 2 girls here occasionally at dusk to watch the bats stream out. They all start flying out and it almost looks like a plume of smoke. Bats are wonderful and it's... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed 1 week ago
Gainesville, Florida
via mobile
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259 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 246: English reviews
Gainesville, Florida
Level Contributor
28 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

I love to take my 2 girls here occasionally at dusk to watch the bats stream out. They all start flying out and it almost looks like a plume of smoke. Bats are wonderful and it's great that my children understand their purpose instead of fear them. I would suggest some mosquito repellent and/or long sleeves/pants since it is near... More 

Thank g8rmom
Gainesville, Florida
Level Contributor
13 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

SO MANY BATS!!!! Just an amazing thing to do for free. Get there a little early to be able to park. Also, know it is a bit smelly shortly after they fly. A must do for anyone in or near Gainesville.

Thank Renee M
Gainesville, Florida
Level Contributor
16 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Ever wanted to see a million bats? Well this is the place to do it. Just remember not to have your mouth open as you look up at the bats flying out of their house. Great to do in the summer, expect to get there about 30 mins prior to dusk so you can get a spot. Sometimes there can... More 

Thank ZynthesisGville
Level Contributor
57 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago via mobile

The bat house is one of a kind! Well, technically two of a kind since now there are two structures. I love taking people who are visiting here as it is always something they haven't seen at home, and it is really impressive to see the bats fly at dusk. Since it is an attraction based on nature evenings vary.... More 

2 Thank Doozer L
Level Contributor
22 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

What a special experience. To be able to watch thousands of bats leave their house all at once is something to see. We take our out of town visitors to see this as most people don't even know what a bat house is and seeing this sight is special. You should check with Google on what time Dusk begins. That... More 

1 Thank keneri1
Jensen Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
84 reviews
33 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

This has been on my to do list for a while and I finally got to see it. It is a quick visit if you time it right but is it is well worth checking out. I have heard that there are over 400,000 bats that reside in those two houses and they all leave in 15 minute period. Do... More 

1 Thank Kam2013
Raleigh, North Carolina
Level Contributor
458 reviews
132 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 135 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 18, 2016

Took my daughters to view the bats coming out at dusk and we weren't disappointed. An estimated 300,000 bats live in the two bat houses. When they come out they keep pouring out in a large a steady stream for about 10-15 minutes around dusk. We were all really impressed and will be back. There is parking down the street.... More 

Thank Don N
Tampa, Florida
Level Contributor
18 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2016 via mobile

We got there around 5:30PM and there wasn't a whole lot going on. There's a small lake across the road where we viewed turtles and a small gator, of course. I'm told the bats swarm out of the house at sundown so we missed that. Baughman hall would have been nice to see up close but there was a private... More 

Thank bill m
Paul R, Public Relations Manager at University of Florida Bat House, responded to this review

Hi Bill, Thank you for your review. Yes, timing definitely is the key. If you arrived at 5:30 last week (first week of August), you were way too early, because sunset is after 8 p.m. The bats typically emerge after sunset just before dark. The sunset time for the day and more information about viewing the bats is available on... More 

Saint Cloud, Minnesota
Level Contributor
92 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2016

What more can you say than you will see thousands of bats heading out for thier feeding. It has an unpleasant smell. There will be a good size crowd of people. You need to get there before dusk so you will be sure to capture the whole experience.

Thank Clive Z
Orlando, Florida
Level Contributor
133 reviews
57 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2016

The number one thing on my list to do when I found out that I was going to be in Gainesville was the UF Bat House and I wasn’t disappointed. I talked a bunch of people from class into going with me and it was great team experience where we got to know each other. I got there early and... More 

Thank Mike P

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