Everybody knows about the swampy gator filled Everglades National Park, but did you know there is another natural wonderland in the NPS, easily day-trip-able from Miami? Biscayne National Park is mostly aquatic, but you can take an amazing boat tour and hike around a little island – it’s a delightful adventure. Starting out at Dante Fascell Visitor’s Center [9700 SW 328th St, Homestead, FL 33033] cruises depart often, but check their schedule and make a reservation. The water has infinite shades of blue and as you set off you can see both the Miami and Fort Lauderdale skylines.
You are bound to see wildlife, who knows what! Our guide told us about turtles or manatees – but we were treated to so many dolphins!
Also, a shark (which evaded photograph) swimming around a shipwreck!
And I even learned something incredible – a pure white subspecies of the Great Blue Heron exists – and I got to see it! It looks very much like a great egret, but you can tell the difference by noticing its yellow legs.
As you get close to your destination the water becomes dotted with keys.
You’re headed to the tiny island called Boca Chita Key. It’s a popular destination for boaters and campers, but wasn’t so crowded that I couldn’t find a spot to call my own.
What you can do here is:
+Climb up the lighthouse,
+Hike around the little island to see the mangroves and wildlife
+Swim, snorkel, or wade in this paradise
When your boat tour is over there is a little beach park to swim at that comes free with ticket purchase.
Other ways to explore the Biscayne? Paddle through the bay! Rentals are available at the Visitor’s Center.