Hidden a few miles away from Disney World and Highway 192 is something that few who visit ever see. Orlando is full of natural beauty, wildlife, waterways, and hidden treasures. Marsh Landing Adventures from Orlando Airboat Tours gives you the opportunity to see Orlando as it was many years ago- nature untouched by man and wildlife in their natural habitat. Jason and Jaca went out to see what this tour had to offer!
I have been on a few airboat tours before but this tour was unlike any other. This is an Eco tour, which means that it focuses on the natural beauty of the area, the history of the everglades, and also the wildlife you see on the tour. When we arrived at the boat, we were met by our captain and escorted onto the boat. This boat was different than the past airboats we have been on due to 3 things:
- The airboats at Marsh Landing only seat 6 or 10 people so this a much more intimate tour.
- The seats are stadium style so you are not fighting over people in front of you to get great views and pictures.
- There is a canopy over your head which allows you to not bake in the Orlando sun!
There are 3 different options of tours. The base tour is 60 minutes which shows you the real Florida. The next option is a 90 minute tour which gives you the chance to see more of the everglades and take a trip to see Big John, the largest alligator around this area (15 feet in legnth)! The 120 minute tour is the top option with the chance to see everything the north everglades has to offer.
The fees for the tours are:
- 60 minute tour- adult $49.95; child (ages 3-10) $44.95
- 90 minute tour- adult $65.00; child (ages 3-10) $60.00
- 120 minute tour- adult $85.00; child (ages 3-10) $80.00
We went out on the 90 minute tour because we wanted to see Big John! After taking a small ride down a canal, we were in the most Northern part of the everglades. I can’t even describe how beautiful this area was! The water was clear, the air was fresh and there was nature all around us. It was so quiet & peaceful! After riding into the everglades for a few minutes we did something that I have never seen on an airboat tour. We stopped the motor, the captain got out of his chair and he sat beside us and explained the history of the area, what we were seeing including birds and plant life, and he took time to answer any questions that we had. He explained that the tour we were on was not about tearing up the land, but about enjoying the beauty of the area without disturbing the plants or animals here.
On the tour we saw a ton of alligators including Big John. Big John is the biggest alligator in the area and measures around 15 feet long! I wish I could have gotten a better picture of this big guy but we didn’t hang around him long. He seemed to be in a bad mood that day. We saw a lot of other gators, their nests, and baby alligators swimming around our boat. On this tour, we also saw a ton of birds including spoonbills, hawks, limpkins and even deer!
At the end of the tour, our guide took us out in the middle of the everglades and allowed us to sample food as they did way back in the day. We got the chance to eat some seeds from water lilies growing in the water. We tasted them in different stages of development and believe it or not they were rather good! It was cool to get the chance to eat something natural in its natural state that was untouched by man!
Overall, we loved this tour and would love to go back and do it again! We had a great time learning about the history of the area while seeing what Osceola County and Saint Cloud had to offer! Our tour guide was amazing. We could tell he loved what he did and that made everyone on the boat feel more connected. Orlando Fun and Food would like to thank Orlando Airboat Tours for allowing us to come along on one of their tours to share with you! When you are down in Orlando at Disney, take a day and step outside of the park to experience the rest of Orlando. I know you will love it! If you decide to book a tour, tell them Orlando Fun and Food sent you! Thanks again and check back soon for another review on one of our adventures!