We visited at the end of December, and booked a sunset ride through the 10,000 Islands area to cap our couple of days in the Everglades. We had our passes well in advance, but there wasn't concerns of a sellout - indeed the vibe here was quite different than the rest of Everglades National Park, less visited and more laid-back.
The boat ride was 90 minutes through the islands, hitting its heights halfway when we came across a pod of dolphins, probably about 10-15 of them, flipping and such. That made the trip in itself, but we also enjoyed beautiful scenery (and that was with overcast skies) and a variety of birds - from memory, ibis, blue herons, gulls, and about 100 pelicans that had just arrived and were camped on a sandbar.
Can't compare this to the other concessioner boat rides in ENP, but I was wholly satisfied and it was a nice bridge on our trip between the more typical Everglades experience (river of grass, alligators, etc) and the Gulf Coast. Plus it's the only part of the park with restaurants in close proximity - gotta love that!
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