We were provided complimentary tickets to Wild Florida to facilitate my review. The opinions in this post are 100% mine. You can read my full disclosure policy here.
A few months ago we had the BEST escape from PA and enjoyed an awesome family vacation to Kissimmee, Florida. One of the highlights of our trip was our visit to Wild Florida Airboat and Wildlife Park. So, so, so much fun. And educational! We are still talking about it all the time. The cool thing about Wild Florida is that it’s the only airboat ride venue that also has a wildlife park and with the purchase of your airboat ride ticket, you get into the wildlife park for free! I ended up with so many great pictures from our visit that I split my review into two posts. Take a few minutes to check out my review of the Wild Florida Airboat portion that includes some gorgeous photos (it’s so beautiful there!) along with some gator spotting videos! Today I’m sharing more about the Wildlife Park side of the attraction which was equally as fun for the entire family.
This map shows where the Wildlife Park is in relation to the water. Obviously the airboat rides take place on the upper right side of that map and the animals (including some nice big reservoirs for the gators) are on the left side. The park is split up into different areas, animals native to the US and then more exotic species.
Welcome! Let me show you some of our favorite parts of our visit. In addition to just being a really cool place with really cool animals, Wild Florida wants their park to be as interactive and educational as possible. So it’s a great spot for field trips for local groups, and a must-do if you’re vacationing in the Central Florida area. My kids still talk about their experiences there. EXPERIENCES, not just what they saw, but what they interacted with. Those are the things that stick with them and make an impact!
Meet Fluffy! This guy is the coolest (next to Nugget who you’ll meet further down). Fluffy is 3-year old alligator and we know that because he’s 3-feet long. Just one thing I learned while we got to hold him. You can see my kids were loving this.
Leo’s face kills me here! Fluffy is his pride and joy. Wild Florida offers educational and interactive animal shows where visitors get to touch and learn about some of their exotic creatures. We got a bit of a private show and the kids had so much fun starring in it!
Alligators are separated by age. This is the teenager pool. You remember the teenager pool when you were a kid, right? They still exist. 😉 One thing I loved learning about Wild Florida is that these gators were all rescued by them. They’ve been found in places they don’t belong and instead of being killed, Wild Florida will purchase them and give them a home. Love that!
This is called adult swim, do not enter. I wasn’t really IN the water with these gators but did use a zoom lens to get some close ups. Seeing gators just a few feet away is really an experience. They’re so prehistoric looking, aren’t they? Love that shot on the bottom with the dragonfly taking a little rest on this big gator.
These are some of the rare and beautiful ducks at the park. There’s a nice little exhibit where you’ll find some ducks I’ve personally only ever seen in pictures, never in real life. Really cool.
This is one of my favorite features at Wild Florida. This is a walkway into an area called Hawk Swamp and it’s just gorgeous. I probably don’t have to tell you that it’s HOT in Florida so this is a really nice reprieve off the beaten path through a stunning cypress tree forest. It’s incredible, like something out of a storybook. And it’s in the shade, so, win!
This is one of the pics I took from the walkway through Hawk Swamp. Isn’t it amazing? All that green is actually vegetation sitting on top of water. The little tree knees that you see sticking up are the roots of the cypress trees. Beautiful!
There are tropical birds in various places at the Wild Florida Wildlife Park. How gorgeous is this guy?
The kids were thrilled to get up close and personal with a new friend. Some of these birds are outside in enclosures but you can really get a hands-on experience in the aviary.
We bought the kids a few seed sticks to feed the birds. SO much fun! You definitely want to do this when you visit. Many of the birds will walk right onto your arm or shoulder to be hand fed.
This big green guy was our favorite and we kept passing him around. This was an awesome experience for the kids. They loved it!
Now let me introduce the sweetest cutie in Wild Florida. This is Nugget, a teacup pig. And he plays soccer. I mean…. I can’t even handle the cute. Our awesome tour guide, Sam, got him out so the kids could touch him. Nugget took off like a shot when he was put down. He’s got little legs though and didn’t get far. Just another really fun memory that we made interacting with animals here!
Our fantastic tour guide and park co-owner Sam introduced us to this guy, a Red-Ruffed Lemur named Leo. My son’s name is Leo so this was super exciting, as was the fact that Leo the Lemur likes to be scratched in the armpits and will lift his arm to give you better access. Hilarious and adorable. Leo was a huge hit with all of us.
You can see our faces reflected in the glass, looking at these lemurs. The exotic animals exhibits are really cool and include some informative placards to tell you where the animals originate from, if they’re endangered, what they eat, and more.
Pretty peacocks going for a stroll. There’s something interesting to see around every corner. I don’t even think this was a peacock exhibit, just more neat stuff that’s everywhere!
Look at the horns on the African cattle!
In addition to being an awesome wildlife park, I have to mention the facilities. They’re fantastic. I actually have to specifically mention the bathrooms which are nicer than the bathrooms in my house. They’re gorgeous! I think I took my daughter in there 3-4 times while we were there and this is a kid who can’t stand a public restroom. There’s a lot of attention to detail everywhere, which makes Wild Florida a great venue for a wedding or corporate event. They do have a hall that is available for rent, and what a cool place for your party!
We were able to eat lunch in the Cypress Ballroom and it’s so pretty in there. Obviously it wasn’t decorated for a wedding while we were there but you can see the view is fantastic and it’s a really neat atmosphere.
Speaking of lunch: Chomp House Grill. EAT THERE. You guys, we were in Florida for a week and I think this was one of the top 2 meals we had the entire time we were there. It was just amazing. And the smell of the BBQ. I’m drooling just writing about it.
Here’s the menu with prices that were listed while we were there (subject to change) but I wanted you to see the variety and unique dishes. I played it safe with an Everglades Pulled Pork Sandwich and I highly recommend the Natural Orange Dreamsicle Hurricane Freeze to drink. Ah, this meal was soooo good! Definitely plan to eat lunch there when you visit.
The airboat ride combined with the wildlife park made for a truly incredible day. We had the best time, learned so much, and left with memories we’ll have for life. Wild Florida is a must-do next time you’re traveling in Central Florida!