Info on the Flamingo Visitor Center

flamingo visitor centerAs you may have heard, the Everglades National Park won a preservation grant that will be used to restore the outside of the Flamingo Visitor Center. This visitor center has been a popular spot and attraction for visitors since the 1960s. The Center was originally built as part of the “Mission 66” program to modernize the parks for visitors.

The Flamingo Visitor Center was built in the style of the Park Service combined with the Miami Modern style. The Miami style was developed post World War II; it reflects an international style by adds glamour, fun, and material excesses that go beyond simple modern architecture. Flamingo has bold colors, a Keystone veneer, jalousie windows and louvered screen walls.

The Park was one of 20 national parks competing for the grant. The $250,000 grant will repair the outside of the building, the landscape, and improve the visitor experience by opening a new visitor center inside.

Inside the Flamingo Visitor Center, there are educational displays, brochures, and backcountry permits. You can easily access campgrounds, a public boat ramp, a marina store, and hiking and canoeing trails near this center.

The Buttonwood Café is open in the winter. However, it is closed currently after damage from Hurricane Irma. Boat ramps are open, but fuel is unavailable and the marina store is closed. It is essential for visitors to the area to bring their own food and water.

Want to explore the Everglades in a fun and exciting way? An airboat tour is the way to go!  An airboat tour with Captain Mitch’s Airboat Tours give you a glimpse of the Everglades like no other. You’ll get to see lots of animals and plants on this trip. Captain Mitch has been navigating the Everglades for decades! To book an airboat ride, click Everglades airboat rides page or call 800-368-0065.


Activities in the Everglades

activities in the evergladesThe Everglades is a really fun and interesting, but if you want to do more than just explore the Park on your own there’s plenty of fun tours and activities happening regularly in the Park. Summer is approaching so the activities in Park have ended for the season, but if you want to venture into the Park during the summer months, there is still plenty for you to do.  Below, we wanted to share with you some activities in the Everglades:

  • Anhinga Amble – This is a 50-minute stroll on the Anhinga Trail where you will get a chance to see alligators, wading birds, and other wildlife. The stroll is every day from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. and starts at Royal Palm. It is free with Park entrance.
  • Glades Glimpse – Listen to a ranger talk about many different topics within the Everglades. Topics vary daily. This talk occurs every day from 1:30 to 2 p.m. and starts at Royal Palm. It is free with Park entrance.
  • Captain Mitch’s Airboat Tours – Take in all the sights and sounds of the Everglades as you zip through the water. Captain Mitch and his team have been navigating these waters for decades. Your time at Captain Mitch’s will be one of the greatest memories of the Florida Everglades ecosystem and swamplands, whether you are visiting or a year-round resident. It’s a unique way to explore!
  • Camping – Camping during the wet season (June through November) can be difficult and uncomfortable due to heat and rain. Campers must bring their own equipment.
  • Biking, canoeing, and kayaking can be done year-round. Remember to read signs so you know where you’re allowed to take your boat/bike.

If you’re tired of walking and want a chance to see more of the Everglades, an airboat tour is ideal!  A tour with Captain Mitch’s Airboat Tours give you a glimpse of the Everglades like no other. Captain Mitch has been navigating the Everglades for decades! To book an airboat ride, click Everglades airboat rides page or call 800-368-0065.



The South Florida Caribbean Network  

south florida caribbean networkThe South Florida/Caribbean Network (SFCN) is a monitoring network across the National Park Service; its one of 32, actually. These networks have an inventory and monitoring program. Through this gathering of inventory and monitoring, the SFCN gives park rangers a better way to manage park resources. There are seven parks in the SFCN network including: Big Cypress National Preserve, Biscayne National Park, Buck Island Reef National Monument, Dry Tortugas National Park, Everglades National Park, Salt River Bay National Historical Park and Ecological Preserve, and Virgin Islands National Park 

Each one of these parks comes with its own challenges it has to face whether its water management, declining coral reefs, mercury toxicity, global warming, invasive species, weather concerns, sustainable fisheries, land use, rising sea levels, visitor usage, and more.  

The SFCN staff is a team made up of biologists and ecologists. They monitor air quality, geology, soil, invasive species, landscape dynamics, marine communities, wildlife, terrestrial/freshwater vegetation and wildlife, threatened and rare species, visitor usage, water/hydrology, and water quality.  

The SFCN believes in order to properly manage and care for these parks in the long term, there needs to be a knowledge of the resources in the parks. They do inventory to acquire a baseline of information.  

The SFCN’s website is loaded with quality information sharing all inventories and things monitored. There are detailed lists, documents, and reports of everything happening in the park. If you’re interested in the current status of the Everglades, this site can give you some great insight. To learn more about the Everglades and the SFCN, click here 

Want to explore the Everglades for yourself? Take your own inventory of all the animals, birds, and plants you see on an airboat tour! If you’ve never been to the Everglades, an airboat tour is a great way to explore it. Captain Mitch’s Everglades Airboat Tours has been giving tours to people in this wetland for more than 30 years. To book a tour. Click here or call 800-368-0065.   

The Marjory Stoneman Douglas Wilderness 

marjory stoneman douglas wildernessFor unfortunate reasons, we heard this name mentioned in the news back in February, but the Parkland high school and parts of the Everglades were named after the American journalist, conversationalist and women’s suffrage advocate.  

The Marjory Stoneman Douglas Wilderness makes up around 1.3 million acres of the Everglades National Park. In 1964, the Wilderness Act was created, and stated ““A wilderness, in contrast with those areas where man and his own works dominate the landscape, is hereby recognized as an area where the earth and its community of life are untrammeled by man, where man himself is a visitor who does not remain. An area of wilderness is further defined to mean in this Act an area of undeveloped Federal land retaining its primeval character and influence, without permanent improvements or human habitation, which is protected and managed so as to preserve its natural conditions.” 

Within this act, 86 percent of the Everglades was designated the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Wilderness in 1978. The designated land is the largest subtropical wilderness in the United States and it’s the largest wilderness east of the Rocky Mountains. This area of land has the highest level of protection on it as possible. Within the Everglades, the largest protect stand of sawgrass in North America exists and the largest protect mangrove ecosystem in the western hemisphere lives. Also, this protected area is home to 21 federally threatened and endangered species.  

In the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Wilderness area, people have the chance to explore the Park both during the day and night. One-third of this protected area is submerged, as the seal floor is designated wilderness. Since it’s protected, this area helps keep the South Florida’s water source protected; this area also protects other parts of Florida from incoming storms (like hurricanes).  

Regulation on land and in water are put in place in this area to assure animals safety and promote nesting. Be prepared for rules in the Park! There are rules regarding camping, pets, motor vehicles, generators, and more. To find out these rules, visit