Imagine your family walking through a jungle-like setting in Florida. Suddenly, someone spots a gator laying in the morning sun! A few moments later, someone else hears a creature walking through the underbrush and a wild hog appears! While even further down the path, you see some birds unlike any you’ve ever seen outside your living room window! Are you in the middle of the latest Disney attraction? No, your family is taking a journey through nature at the Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve.
Your Guide to the Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve
The Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve is over 3,500 acres of wetlands located in Ft. Myers, Florida. Your family can experience the preserve by walking the 1.2 mile long elevated boardwalk that circles throughout the wetlands. The preserve also has an interpretive center full of displays that show the animals that make the slough their home, how the slough changes during the year, and what to look for while walking through preserve.
So, what is a slough? To start with, it’s pronounced “slew”. (I know, that’s not how I was saying it either.) The slough is a narrow wetland that has freshwater slowly flowing throughout. The level of water depends on the season and the amount of rain that has fallen. The water in the Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve flows to Estero Bay.
The preserve is free to visitors, but you will have to pay $1-$5 for parking. It takes around 90 minutes to visit the interpretive center and to walk the 1.2 mile boardwalk. There are picnic areas available, restrooms, and a small garden that you can walk through.
The boardwalk is open from dawn to dusk, every day of the year, and the interpretive center is open on Tuesday-Sunday from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Guided walks are available every Wednesday from May-October, and the 4th Saturday of the month. During January – April, November, and December there are daily tours. You can find more information about the tours here. The boardwalk is fully accessible, but double-wide strollers are not recommended because it is narrow.
A walk through the Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve is a unique and educational way to spend a couple of hours of your Florida vacation. Be observant on your journey, and you will be surprised by the critters, plants, and sights that you will see.
For navigation to the Six Mile Cypress Slough Preserve, enter the address:
7751 Penzance Blvd.