Lots of Backroads in the Everglades
(8-9 hours – Private Tours Only)
It’s late December and conditions do not get any better than now. Birds are everywhere. Dolphins, Manatees, plenty of gators.
There are 4 parts to the All Day tour:
1. Airboat to a Miccousukee tree island. Other tours end here.
2. Many stops in Big Cypress Preserve where wildlife increases dramatically
3. 90 minute boat ride thru the Ten Thousand Islands to the Gulf of Mexico
4. A stone crab lunch during stone crab season thru April
Big Cypress National Preserve sits right in the middle of the largest wilderness area in the USA, sandwiched by Everglades NP. Big Cypress is where wildlife increases dramatically. Many unique plants and animals call Big Cypress home including the Florida panther, black bear, Big Cypress fox squirrel, and the elusive ghost orchid.
Most visitors and sightseeing tour operators only go to the first park (Shark Valley) and a few local airboat operators and then turn back to Miami. Miami Native Tours brings you to FOUR PARKS which includes an airboat ride to a Miccosukee Indian village and a boat ride through the 10,000 Islands to the Gulf of Mexico. Our Everglades sightseeing tour includes transportation to and from your Miami or Miami Beach hotel. We can also pick you up at the Port of Miami or Miami International Airport (MIA). View our prices and tour details below.
- Everglades National Park
- Big Cypress National Preserve
- Ten Thousand Islands NWR
- Fakahatchee State Park (time permitting)
- Miccosukee Reservation
- A 90 minute boat ride through the Ten Thousand Islands to the Gulf of Mexico. Always the highlight of the day.
- All boats captains have 5 and 6 generations of history to the area
Boardwalk in Big Cypress National Preserve
30 minute hike on a Big Cypress Boardwalk with a beautiful cypress canopy and an opportunity to see various epiphytes and orchids.
A great bird spot for wading birds and raptors in the fall, and songbirds all year round.
Stop at Clyde Butcher Photo Gallery, considered the Ansel Adams of Florida, which features a cypress swamp trail behind gallery.
There are several stops for gators and birds in Big Cypress, depending on water levels and migration. Gators seen are dozens in the summer, hundreds in the winter.
Depending on the season and the water levels the best opportunity to view a wide variety of wildlife is traveling the backroads of the Everglades and Big Cypress. The “Old Florida” you seek still exists on these backroads. Excellent opportunity to see and photograph alligators, turtles, snakes and birds up close without leaving the tour van.
Airboat ride to a Miccosukee tree island
- Airboat ride to tree island where Miccosukee lived for generations fleeing the US Army.
- Tour highlights the unique history of the unconquered Miccosukee tribe
- How they differ from Seminoles even though both came into Florida fleeing Andrew Jackson and the Indian Removal Act.
If your dream Everglades tour is you taking a selfie with a baby alligator having its mouth taped shut, I am NOT your ideal guide.
Rates (minimum 4 people)
- Adults (4 People) – $225 each
- Adults (5-6 People) – $205 each
- Adults (7-11 People) – $195 each
Florida may have the most interesting Native American history in the country. The tour details 5 tribes:
The Calusa mound pictured built 3000 years ago is an important part of the tour.
Options and/or Upgrades to your Everglades tour:
Dawn Patrol usually means seeing more wildlife and beating the blue hair invasion from Naples that crowds our stone crab restaurant
During the summer, its aligator nesting season but the gators and birds are much harder to find. I like Summer Sunset tours on the Gulf, especially for birdwatchers. A later start gives us time to check rain forecast and make sure airboats are operating.
Big Cypress is a designated Intl Dark Sky place for our stargazers.
I do not charge extra if the group uses a third party for:
- Swamp walks
- Swamp buggy rides
- Private airboat
- Fishing guides
Important: Third parties must have a Big Cypress permit, as I do.
Third parties for swamp walks and swamp buggies take guest to places I can not and don’t want to do.
Swamp walks are usually led by hunters. Swamp buggies by old time Gladesmen, similar to my boat captains.
Once or twice a month during the winter a strong SW or NW wind makes conditions for the boat trip thru the Ten Thousand Islands less than ideal. I usually know 3-5 days ahead of time and can offer additional options:
- Downgrading to the 5 hour tour
- More time spent in Big Cypress
The days before and after the strong winds are usually very good days, so my preference is to to reschedule if possible.