"Tram Tour To The Tower" Shark River Island by grandmaR

Shark River Island Travel Guide: 0 reviews and 11 photos

Shark Valley is located on the northern edge of the park 35 miles west of Miami on U.S. Highway 41 (the Tamiami Trail). It is a section of the Everglades which is isolated (by car) from the rest of the park. It features the sawgrass expanse of the Shark River Slough with islands of tropical hardwood hammocks dotting the landscape. The Shark River Slough is an extensive freshwater slough that flows from Lake Okeechobee (north of the park) to the southwestern coast of Florida.

The Ten Thousand Islands in this area can be explored only by boat, canoe, or kayak. A concessionaire downstairs from the ranger station offers interpretive boat tours through the islands.

The general Shark Valley area is perhaps what most visitors think of when they think of the everglades, as it is surrounded by a seemingly eternity of sawgrass in all directions. Alligators and wading birds often come within feet of visitors, and occasionally, a lazy alligator will block the road.

You can walk, bicycle, or do as we did and take a two-hour tram ride to an observation tower overlooking the sawgrass marsh midway around a paved loop trail.

At the point in the Shark Valley tram road where it turns back north there is the Shark Valley Observation Tower, a sixty five foot tower that overlooks the sawgrass prairie to the south.

  • Last visit to Shark River Island: Feb 2005
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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