the reason we got to the park so early was so that we could take the guided boat tour of the area's wildlife. there were only about 15 of us on the first tour, which was nice because then we got more time to talk with the guide and learn a bunch more about the animals! the guide took us down the rivers and pointed out all kinds of animals as we went. we got to see a bunch of different birds, turtles, and best of all: alligators! it was really interesting to hear the guide talk about the animals and their history in the region. we even got to see an adult alligator with her young! the tour guide even said that someone had once seen a florida panther on one of the tours. the tour was about two hours long- which flew by! we were worried at first because it was raining when we first left the dock, but about five minutes in it cleared up and was actually sunny the rest of the tour.