What pops into your head when you think of Florida? Besides the obvious answers of Disney, the ocean & palm trees. Gators! Yes, Florida has an abundance of gators! I was once told that where ever there is a body of water…assume there is a gator in it. I have yet to see any gators in any out of the ordinary places since I moved to Orlando a year and half ago. I will tell you an awesome place to go to see gators though & it is definitely a memorable experience that will leave you wanting more! If you’ve never been on an airboat tour, you must make sure you put it on your “To Do” list when you come to Kissimmee! If you book one first thing in the morning, the ride usually lasts a good full hour & then you have the rest of the day to go play at other area attractions!
Upon a lot of research of all of the area airboat tour companies & compared prices, length of ride, type of airboat, I narrowed it down to Wild Willy’s Airboat Tours. As an added bonus, they are far enough out, you won’t have any ugliness to look at, such as buildings & housing developments. If you like to plan your vacation to a “T” and make reservations, you can do that right on Wild Willy’s Airboat Tours website. It probably is a good idea to set up a reservation in advance, just to make sure you make the best out of your time. But if you like to just see where the day takes you, you can always stop in and see if you can take a tour. That’s what I did, I just stopped in one morning and it was about a 30 minute wait & then I was off on my airboat adventure! And if you have to wait a little while on your tour to start, you can sit outside under the pavilion and soak up some good ‘ol vitamin D and beautiful scenery of the lake. Then you can’t help but get excited when you hear the hum of the airboat coming in because you know you’re turn is coming up soon!
One of the great things at Wild Willy’s is that they have 6 passenger airboats, unlike some places that are big enough for 15 people or so, but when you only have 6 passengers aboard that means you can go a whole lot faster & the faster the better, right?! These little boats are super loud, so you are provided with a set of ear muffs to block out the sound. Don’t worry…Captain Mike will tell you when to put them on, so you don’t miss out, as he gives you a little history about the lake, as you head down the canal out into the open lake. Then hang on to your hats, for a super fast & awesome ride! The airboats feel like they just float across the water with such ease, you almost get the feeling that you’re flying. Then when you look out and you have the area birds flying next to you…it’s a pretty cool feeling!
You will also get the chance to see several gators, as your captain will know all the good gator spots & knows what he’s looking for, so he can point out all the little baby gators in the area, bald eagles sitting in trees, turtles swimming beside the boat, big ‘ol water moccasins & other various wildlife. Each ride is unique and you never know what you might get to see. I loved the fact I got to see a huge turtle swimming along side of the boat. The boat will pull up, right next to the gators so you can get a chance to take plenty of photos. Some gators will just sit there like statues, while others are a bit shy and will duck down in the water about as fast as your boat pulls up to them, so you’ve got to be quick to see some of them! One of the cutest things I saw where all of the baby gators. Some are a bit hard to see because they are so tiny, but if you look close you can see them crawling around on the reeds and branches in the water. Others are a little bit bigger & are easier to see. It’s funny to see them scatter when your boat takes off.
Did you know airboats don’t need water to work? In fact, they don’t even need much water. Yep…they can go on land just as easy as in the water! And if everyone aboard the airboat is game, Captain Mike might just take the boat and spin it around a few times for you! Good times! All I know is by the end of the trip I didn’t want to get off the boat as I could have spent the entire day out in the gorgeous weather and enjoying the lake, as I’m always happiest when I’m on, in or near the water!
One of my favorite parts of the day was getting to hold the baby gator…they had two & their names were Thunder & Lightning. I’m not sure which one I got to hold be he sure was cute. And they are a lot softer than you would think! So don’t be afraid to hold one for a great photo opportunity! Captain Mike even had him tell us bye, by tickling his belly a bit which cause him to give us a little wave…it was so cute!
So if you are looking for an awesome airboat tour, I can highly recommend that you go to Wild Willy’s Airboat Tours. You can visit them on the web at www.wildwillysairboattours.com or you can call for reservations at 407-891-7955. They are located at 4715 Kissimmee Park Rd., St. Cloud, FL 34772. You can also e-mail them for more info at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you’re looking for the best airboat tour in the area…look no further! This is the place you’ll want to make sure and go to!