If you are a regular reader of Stretchingittotravel you know we love activities that are low cost. State parks are great places to visit due to their cheap cost and many activities.
We spent a few nights at Fort Myers Beach with the intention of visiting Lovers Key State Park. We arrived around 9am Christmas morning to a rapidly filling parking lot. Admission for the day is $8 a car and the park is open from 8am to sunset daily.
We waited a bit for a trolley to drop us near the waterfront. There was some confusion as to if the trolley ran on Christmas so we ended up walking the short path to the beach.
The park has well over two miles of beautiful sandy beaches to walk. We walked from the boardwalk around to Big Carlos Bay by the bridge and back. A nice clean, wide beach to explore.
Later when the sun was really hot we walked the nature trail to view the canals. The island was being developed to become a resort but sold to the state in the 1980s.
We saw many gopher turtles on our walk and their holes.
There are opportunities to rent bikes, kayaks, and stand up paddle boards for use inside the park. They also offer kayak tours and rent beach gear.
We spent most of our day relaxing at Lovers Key. Relaxing by the ocean is one of my favorite ways to spend the day.
More information on Lovers Key can be found here: https://www.loverskeyadventures.com/
Over a few trips we have tossed around doing an airboat tour. The family always thought it would be fun but generally I could not find one at a cost I was happy with. This is not the case in the Everglades. Competition is fierce and prices are lower than any others we had seen to date.
I also could not chose between taking a grassland tour or mangrove tour. Then I read about Captain Mitch’s tours. They offer a tour that visits both on their property.
I was able to secure a reservation online a couple of weeks in advance of our December trip for an afternoon tour. This location is just outside of Naples.
Our tour was so much fun! We started out in the mangroves and ended up in the grassslands. We saw a few gators, a gator nest and many birds.
Flying through the mangrove channels is a very unique experience.
The one hour tour is forty dollars for adults and twenty dollars per child. There is also a coupon on the website for three dollars off per person.
After the airboat ride you can go inside the office and meet an alligator. You can take pictures and hold it. We had a great time and would love to ride again.
More information here: http://www.captainmitchs.com/
Categories: Trip Reviews
Tags: Airboat, Airboat Tour, Alligator, Captain Mitch, Christmas, December, Everglades, Florida, gator, Mangroves, Naples
This months Fair Trade Friday box was one of my favorites.
#Whomademyclothes? Vote with your money and know who makes the items you wear.
I love the light pink tassel necklace. Very fun for summer.
And this navy and white kimono will be great for cool summer nights.
More information on Fair Trade Friday can be found here: http://fairtradefriday.club/
There are four days in 2018 that entrance to our National Parks are free for visitors.
From the National Park Service website:
Come experience the national parks! On four days in 2018, all National Park Service sites that charge an entrance fee will offer free admission to everyone. Mark your calendar for these entrance fee–free dates in 2018:
The entrance fee waiver for fee-free days does not cover amenity or user fees for activities such as camping, boat launches, transportation, or special tours.
More information can be found here: https://www.nps.gov/planyourvisit/fee-free-parks.htm