If you never went bike riding in Shark Valley, then you need to add that to your bucket list. Bike riding in Shark Valley in the Florida Everglades is truly an amazing experience. The bike trail is 15 miles long, but those 15 miles are filled with alligators just a few feet away as well as some of the most amazing wading birds the Everglades has to offer.
It’s been a while since we’ve had a family outing and what better way for everyone to have a good time than to go bike riding in Shark Valley? So this past weekend we packed up my truck with bikes and lunch and made our way to Shark Valley in Everglades National Park. Another reason for the trip to go bike riding in Shark Valley was that it was also junior park ranger day so all the kids were excited to partake in all the junior park ranger activities.
The best part about bike riding in Shark Valley is the close proximity of the wild life. Alligators, turtles and birds are just an arm’s length away. It amazes me how these animals are so comfortable around humans. I won’t lie there were a few times I didn’t see the alligator and I got scared. All this alligator had to do was turn around and snap at me and I was done.
Now I know the title of this post says bike riding in Shark Valley and while that was true, I also walked Shark Valley for about 4 miles or so. After the kids were tired, my girlfriend brought them back to the truck while my brother in law and myself decided to explore more. Well about 4 miles out, my back tire got a flat. Talk about a mood killer. My brother in law rode back to the truck with my bike while I walked.
Sure walking Shark Valley in the hot Florida sun could have been seen as torture but I relished the opportunity. While bike riding, I saw a great deal of wildlife but walking; I was able to see a whole lot more and up close.
While walking I was able to see numerous mother alligators with their young. At one point I was 3 feet away from several baby alligators. That was short lived as the babies began to call out to their mother and when I heard a loud splash in the water I knew it was time to leave.
Another amazing sight was seeing the herons and egrets up close and personal fishing along the banks. These birds were so close and not afraid of people at all. As I watched them I also had to keep an eye out for any alligators that wanted to sneak up on the shore.
After walking and bike riding in Shark Valley, we all headed out to the Oasis in Big Cypress National Park to see more alligators. By that time all the kids were tired and we headed back after a brief stop. I won’t lie I was tired as hell myself, but it was all worth it.