Everglades National Park
Included in this page:
Address | Hours |
Climate | Directions |
Facilities | Activities
| Trails and Roads |
Lodging and Camping
Fishing | Food and Supplies |
Accessibility | Adjacent
Everglades National Park is the largest
remaining sub-tropical wilderness in the continental United States and has
extensive fresh and saltwater areas, open Everglades prairies, and mangrove
forests. Abundant wildlife includes rare and colorful birds, and this is
the only place in the world where alligators and crocodiles exist side by
side. The park is 1,506,539 acres (606,688 hectares) in size. It is a
World Heritage Site, an
International Biosphere Reserve, and
of International Significance.
Highest from December through April; lowest May through November.
ADDRESS AND TELEPHONE:
Everglades National Park
4000l State Road 9336
Homestead, FL 33034-6733
(8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EST)
OPERATING HOURS AND SEASONS:
Main entrance (near Homestead and Florida City): Open daily, 24 hours a day.
The Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center is open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily.
The Royal Palm Visitor Center is open daily from 8:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. The
Flamingo Visitor Center is open from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. November through
Chekika: Open Monday to Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and weekends 8:00
a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Gates are locked at closing. Campers are allowed
access in and out of the campground after closing, but need to register before
5:00 p.m. to obtain the gate combination from a ranger or camp host.
Shark Valley: Open daily, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. The Visitor Center is open
daily from 8:30 a.m. to 5:15 p.m.
Gulf Coast Visitor Center (in Everglades City): Open daily, November to April
7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and May to November 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
CLIMATE AND RECOMMENDED CLOTHING:
The Everglades is mild and pleasant from December through April, though rare
cold fronts may create near freezing conditions. Summers are hot and humid,
with temperatures around 90 degrees (32°C) and humidity over 90%. Afternoon
thunderstorms are common and mosquitoes are abundant. Wear comfortable sportswear
in winter; loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirts and pants, and insect repellent,
are recommended in the summer.
For a 24-hour weather service recording out of Miami, call 305-661-5065,
or get the current forecast for
Visitors to the main park entrance and Flamingo, coming from the Miami area
and points north, may take the Florida Turnpike (Route 821) south to the
Florida City exit. Turn right at the first traffic light onto Palm Drive
and follow the signs to the park. Visitors driving north from the Florida
Keys should turn left on Palm Drive (344th Street) in Florida City and follow
the signs to the park.
Visitors to Shark Valley may take the Florida Turnpike to the exit for SW
8th Street (also known as U.S. 41 and Tamiami Trail). Travel 25 miles west
on U.S. 41 to signs marked Shark Valley. From the Naples area, take U.S.
41 (Tamiami Trail) east to signs marked Shark Valley.
Visitors to the Gulf Coast Visitor Center should take U.S. 41 west from the
Miami area to the intersection of U.S. 29, then take U.S. 29 south three
miles into Everglades City and follow the signs to the park visitor center.
From the Naples area, take U.S. 41 east and turn south on U.S. 29.
Visitors to Chekika should take Krome Avenue (S.W. 177th Ave.) north from
Homestead or south from U.S. 41. Go west on SW 168th Street and follow the
signs to the park.
Miami and Fort Myers are serviced by international airports, buses, and numerous
car rental agencies. Miami has an Amtrak station.The park may be explored
by personal vehicle, commercial tour bus, bicycle, motor boat, or canoe.
There is NO public transportation in the park.
Admission fees are ten dollars ($10) per car or five dollars ($5) per
pedestrian/cyclist at the main entrance; eight dollars ($8) per car or four
dollars ($4) per pedestrian or cyclist at Shark Valley and Chekika. An Annual
Pass may be purchased for Everglades National Park for twenty dollars ($20),
and a Golden Eagle pass, good for entrance to any U.S. National Park for
one year, may be purchased for fifty dollars ($50).
Golden Age and Golden Access
Passes are also available. Entrance fees are not charged at Gulf Coast.
FACILITIES, OPPORTUNITIES, AND
Visitor centers are located at the main entrance
(west of Homestead), Royal Palm, Flamingo, Shark Valley, and Gulf Coast (south
of Everglades City).
Programs and Activities:
Ranger led walks and talks are offered
year-round from the Royal Palm Visitor Center west of the main entrance,
and at Flamingo, Shark Valley, and Gulf Coast during the winter months.
Boat tours are available year-round at Flamingo
and Gulf Coast. For information and reservations, call Flamingo Lodge Boat
Tours at 941-695-3101, or Everglades National Park Boat Tours at 941-695-2591.
Tram tours are available at Shark Valley year
round; call 305-221-8455 for information and reservations.
Educational programs may also be arranged. Everglades
National Park sponsors on-site curriculum-based education programs for local
4th, 5th, and 6th graders. Participation in these programs is by advance
reservation, and teachers are required to attend training workshops before
bringing their class to the park. To obtain information about ranger-led
education programs, or to obtain more assistance in planning your own field
trip, call the Everglades Environmental Education Office at 305-242-7753.
Trails and Roads:
The main park road winds 38 miles from the main entrance to Flamingo. U.S.
41 leads to the Shark Valley entrance, and U.S. 29 leads to the Gulf Coast
Visitor Center. Parking is available for buses at all visitor centers. Visitor
parking is available at all visitor centers and most trailheads.
Hiking and biking trails are located at various
points along the main park road and at Shark Valley.
Canoe trails are popular in the Flamingo area
and at Gulf Coast. In addition, a 99-mile canoe trail, known as the Wilderness
Waterway, connects Gulf Coast to the Flamingo area.
Lodging and Camping Facilities:
The Flamingo Lodge is the only lodging available
in the park. It is open year-round, with 103 rooms, and 24 cottages with
kitchen facilities. A restaurant and cafe are open during the winter. For
further information and reservations, contact Flamingo Lodge, Marina, and
Outpost Resort at 1-800-600-3813 or 941-695-3101.
Campgrounds are located at three places in
the park, with tent and RV sites, restrooms, and water. There are no hookups
in the park. All three campgrounds are open year round. Reservations may
be made for November 24, 1998 through April 30, 1999 at the Long Pine Key
and Flamingo Campgrounds by calling 1-800-365-2267 in the U.S., 301-722-1257
outside the U.S., or 888-530-9796 with a TDD for the hearing-impaired.
Backcountry camping is also available.
Reservations for designated campsites may be made in person up to 24 hours
before entering the backcountry. There are three sites accessible by foot
and 43 additional sites available in Florida Bay, along the Gulf Coast, and
inland, accessible by canoe or boat. All supplies must be carried in and
out of the backcountry, including water. Fees for backcountry camping are
$10 for 1-6 people, $20 for 7-12 people, and $30 for 13 or more people.
Boating and Fishing:
Boating is popular in the Everglades, as
many parts of the park are only accessible from the water. There is
a marina at Flamingo. A boat launch fee of $5 for a 7-day pass or $60 for
an annual pass is charged. The 7-day pass fee for a non-motorized boat is
Fishing, in the inland and coastal waters
of the Everglades, is also excellent and can be enjoyed year-round. Freshwater
and saltwater fishing require separate Florida fishing licenses.
Food and Supplies:
There is a restaurant and store at Flamingo. The restaurant may be closed
during the summer; however, food is always available at the marina store.
Local restaurants and grocery stores are available in Homestead, Florida
City, Everglades City, and Miami. There are no banks or automatic teller
machines in the park. Gasoline may be obtained at the Flamingo Marina, and
in communities adjacent to the park.
Other Concessions and Visitor Facilities:
The Florida National Parks and Monuments Association
manages bookstores at the Ernest F. Coe Visitor Center, Royal Palm Visitor
Center and Shark Valley Visitor Center. TW Services operates a gift shop
at the Flamingo Visitor Center during the winter months. Everglades National
Park Boat Tours operates a gift store in the Gulf Coast Visitor Center
Accessible facilities and trails may be found
throughout the park. All of the park's visitor centers, most interpretive
trails, some of the Flamingo boat tours, and the Shark Valley tram tours
are wheelchair accessible. There are accessible campsites at all three
campgrounds in the park, and one primitive backcountry campsite, at Pearl
Bay, is accessible to people with mobility impairments. Audio programs and
captioned movies are available at most visitor centers.
Walking and canoe trails, boat tours and tram tours are excellent for viewing
wildlife, including alligators and a multitude of tropical and temperate
birds. Camping, whether in the backcountry or at established campgrounds,
offers the opportunity to enjoy what the park offers firsthand. Ranger-led
activities, offered throughout the park, may help you to enjoy your visit
Everglades National Park is the third largest park in the United States,
outside Alaska. Plan on staying at least one day and perhaps several to get
a good feel for what the park offers.
RESERVATIONS AND PERMITS:
Reservations may be made at the Long Pine Key and Flamingo
Campgrounds. Permits are required for
backcountry camping. Film permits and special
use permits are handled on an individual basis; call 305-242-7700. For
research and collection permits, call 305-242-7800.
SUN AND MOSQUITOES:
Visitors are advised to bring drinking water and snacks since these items
are sparsely located. (However, snacks are not permitted on interpretive
trails.) Since sun and insects are likely to be abundant, sun screen, protective
clothing and insect repellent are advised. Insects can make a visit unbearable
during the summer months if you are not prepared. Information on mosquito
levels during the summer is available at (305) 242-7700 (8:30 a.m. to 4:00
ADJACENT VISITOR ATTRACTIONS:
Biscayne National Park,
Big Cypress National Preserve,
Dry Tortugas National Park, the
Keys National Marine Sanctuary and various
Wildlife Refuges are all in the south Florida area. Several
Parks are in the area as well. Miami, the Florida Keys, and Naples offer
a wide variety of attractions.
For information on the facilities outside the park, please contact the
Chamber of Commerce or Visitor Bureau in
the area of interest. --
Write: Information, Everglades National Park, 40001 State Road 9336, Homestead,
FL 33034-6733.... Or call: 305-242-7700, 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EST.
To explore recent research related to the Everglades, visit the
Information Network (http://everglades.fiu.edu) at Florida International