Getting to the Everglades is fairly simple, no matter where you’re coming from. Interstate 75 runs through the middle of the area, and is known as Everglades Parkway or Alligator Alley. It’s one of the only Interstate Highways where you might have to slow down for an alligator on the road. Hit one of these guys and there could be some serious damage – to your car that is (just ask our friend, James!)
Keep in mind that there aren’t many direct routes to the Everglades from the North because all roads in the area go around the National Park, which covers the majority of the Southwest tip of Florida.
If you’re flying into Florida, you will probably choose to come in to Miami or Fort Lauderdale, on the Atlantic Coast. These destinations are within an hour of Everglades National Park. However, some visitors choose to fly into Fort Meyers, which is a smaller city located on the Gulf Coast, just up the road from Everglades City.
From the Fort Meyers Area and the North:
A 2.5 to 3 hour drive. Take I-75 S to Florida’s Turnpike South to Florida 821 Toll S/Homestead Extension, follow to US-1 which takes you into Homestead and to the Main Park Road.
From the East (Miami and Ft. Lauderdale):
30 to 45 minutes. Get on the Florida 821 Toll S/Homestead Extension, follow that to US-1 and Homestead, where you will find Ingraham Highway/Main Park Road.
From the South (Key West):
Take US-1 North into Homestead, and then Ingraham Highway/Main Park Road.
From the West (Everglades City):
Take US-41/Route 90 East. This is also known as Tamiami Trail. Go South on Route 997 which goes directly into Homestead and Ingraham Highway.
If you choose NOT to drive yourself to the Everglades or Everglades National Park, you have many other transportation options:
Many airports and hotels in the area have bus service to and from the Everglades. You can also arrange a bus tour that will schedule a pickup at your hotel or airport to take you to the park.
There are taxi services in and around the area that will take you to the Everglades. Keep in mind that you might only want to take this route as a last resort, because taxi fare can get expensive.
If you’re coming from Miami, Everglades City, or even Fort Myers or Key West, you can find boat charters that can take you right into the park, as well as scenic water taxis that can be hired privately or taken as public transportation. This is one of the best ways to enjoy travel to the Florida Everglades once you are in the area.
There is a Port Everglades in Everglades City where many cruises launch. When you are looking for Everglades National Park transportation, make sure that you don’t get confused by all of the information about how to get to Port Everglades, because that’s not near the National Park Entrance.
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