Our family had a great time visiting Sarasota Jungle Gardens. Our kids are 7 and 13, and both were entertained by the shows and the interaction with animals, particularly the flamingos. I've been to a lot of attractions in Florida in my life, but this is the only one that has ever let me walk in and amongst a largish flock of flamingos. They eat right out your hands and one of them (No. 38) walked all over the park with our boys. The trails are lushly vegetated with some really tropical style plants and even the water features are "old Florida", hence the sulfur smell. The parrots are awesome, and the backstory on some of their oldest parrots is amazing, but I won't spoil it for you.
In my opinion, people leaving negative reviews about SJG are comparing it to some other type of park, one that is $100 for a single ticket. We got into SJG for $54 bucks for the entire family, and really enjoyed the shows and animal exhibits. Yes, the reptile house is hot. They're cold blooded, so I'm not sure what people expect. Yes, the attraction has some age on it, but that doesn't detract from the fact that the people that work there are very friendly and the animals are up close and personal. This isn't the National Zoo in DC. This is an Old Florida attraction, the kind that were around before the interstates were built.
I highly recommend it to families, but even adults will think the parrots and flamingos are worth the price of admission.
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