Did you know that the Amelia Island Nature Center at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation offers trips to the Okefenokee Swamp? This beautiful National Wildlife Refuge is located in South Georgia, a little over an hour drive from Amelia Island Plantation. The Amelia Island Nature Center offers both day trips and night tours to Okefenokee, known as the land of trembling earth. A couple of weeks ago, our naturalists took a night tour out and our guests were treated to a sunset unlike any other, with the sun dipping behind the water lilies and cypress trees making the sky bright with orange and red. Lots of birds were seen flying to their nighttime roosting spots, including Sandhill Cranes, herons, egrets, ibis, kingfishers and a tiny red hummingbird. An alligator even swam right next to our boat for a while. After the sun went down, as our boat made its way back, we used flashlights to look for alligator and spider eyes reflecting back.
On a recent day trip, we saw some very special birds, the Red Cockaded Woodpeckers. These endangered species are one of the reasons Okefenokee is preserved and managed the way it is. We were lucky enough to hear and see a couple of groups. We also spotted a couple of red-headed woodpeckers, other woodpecker species and fence lizards. Wildflowers were in full bloom and pitcher plants line the swamp. Fall is a beautiful time to visit the Okefenokee Swamp. A beautiful fall color is given by the cypress trees, who's needles turn orange. Alligators are out basking, trying to warm up in the sun for the day. One great thing about the swamp is that every time you visit, you see different plants and animals so you can return many times!
For more information or to schedule your trip to the Okefenokee Swamp, contact the nature center at 904-321-5082 and I promise it'll be an experience you won't soon forget!