Boggy Creek Airboat Ride

Florida Guide > Other Activities

We had all seen the photographs and TV programmes of the airboats whisking their way through the Florida wetlands and so we decided that this was a ‘must do’ on our next trip to Orlando. We did a little bit of internet research first and found that the nearest location was at Boggy Creek, which is situated just east of Kissimmee and immediately south of Orlando International Airport.

Their website told us that reservations weren’t necessary for the continuous half hour tours so we arrived at around 11. 00am on a Wednesday morning. Unfortunately, after a forty-five minute drive, we were dismayed to find huge queues waiting in line. Upon further enquiry we were told that the earliest we could expect to ride would be around 1. 30pm, a wait of over two hours. After a brief discussion we decided to return the following day. The very friendly and helpful staff on hand suggested we made the effort to arrive first thing in the morning so as not to be disappointed again.

Taking their advice we forced ourselves out of bed quite early, around 7. 00am, and after a quick breakfast we were on the road.

What a difference a day made…. when we got there just after 9. 00am there were just a handful of people milling around and by half past nine we were comfortably seated on our airboat with ear defenders at the ready. All the usual safety checks were carried out, including the location of life jackets and then, filled with an eager sense of anticipation, we were on our way.

First just skimming the water at a sedate pace we were rewarded with sightings of alligators at quite close quarters, together with a vast array of birds including ospreys and egrets, then, as the engine noise increased, we were soon speeding along the water at an increasing rate of knots. Being seated close to the water can exaggerate the velocity but as the fan was cranked up even more we were soon weaving through the tall grasses and Cypress trees at what seemed like breakneck speed to whoops of delight by all on board.

What an exhilarating experience this is…. the sad part is that it is quickly over but it does give you an appetite for more. I think the clever people at Boggy Creek know that, and they offer all sorts of day and night tours for longer periods on the marshes.

We will certainly be back again.

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Page added on: 30 July 2008
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