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J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 1 Wildlife Dr, Sanibel Island, FL 33957-3032
Phone Number:
+1 239-472-1100
Website
Description:

Established in 1945, this wildlife refuge occupies one-third of Sanibel...

Established in 1945, this wildlife refuge occupies one-third of Sanibel Island and is a prime spot for birdwatching. Fees are required for Wildlife Drive. Wildlife Drive is closed on Fridays.

There's an extensive and informative FREE visitor center, a fantastic wildlife drive, tram tours, kayaking, fishing opportunities, picnic benches, and even a free scavenger hunt style game and wildlife spotting app (Discover Ding) if you prefer a self-guided tour.

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From the safety of an open-air bus

While in Sanibel we visited the Ding Darling Wildlife Preserve on the island. It is well worth the time to visit. The guide was very knowledgeable and we saw wildlife in their... read more

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed yesterday
FatmanRob
,
Ohio
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4,370 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 4,118: English reviews
Ohio
Level Contributor
40 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

While in Sanibel we visited the Ding Darling Wildlife Preserve on the island. It is well worth the time to visit. The guide was very knowledgeable and we saw wildlife in their natural habitat. There were many birds including white egrets, cormorants, wading birds and blue herrings. We didn't get to see an alligator, but they are very shy and... More 

Helpful?
Thank FatmanRob
Califon,NJ
Level Contributor
25 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge is the best place we have ever seen so many flocks of different species of birds enjoying their winter vacation in Florida; Osprey, White Pelicans, Rosette Spoonbills, Herons, Egrets.....even Bald Eagles! First stop is the very informative Education Center where you can inquire about special programs for the day, including lectures and films, no charge. The... More 

Helpful?
Thank Millie H
Eaton, Ohio, United States
Level Contributor
179 reviews
90 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

Only $5 for are car to drive through at our own pace. The time and day we were here was not loaded with birds and had no alligators, but that is not there fault. They are trapped here. I guess we needed to research when to drive through. The visitor's center was large and informative also.

Helpful?
Thank Steve L
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

We went in hopes of seeing fun and exciting animals. We did see a lot of birds and fish. Great way to kill some time.

Helpful?
Thank Diesel F
Fishers, Indiana
Level Contributor
315 reviews
99 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 150 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

We had visited here years ago - had driven through in our own car. This time we took the tram tour with a naturalist - what a difference! Our guide made the tour so much more interesting and informative. And I got a great photo of a Roseate Spoonbill.

Helpful?
Thank herestoadventures
Westfield, New York
Level Contributor
36 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

I love anything nature related. We went here to take the guided tram tour. While waiting for our reservation, we enjoyed the nature center. They have helpful volunteers who can answer all your questions. There was an 8 minute movie that gave an over view of the refuge. There are beautiful displays of native animals, video based displays, a gift... More 

Helpful?
Thank Elizabeth T
St Charles,Missouri
Level Contributor
302 reviews
126 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW via mobile

Decided to take the tram tour prior to a hike through the complex and were so glad we did! It was a bit pricey at $16.75 per senior, but the bus was open sided and lasted 1 and 1/2 hours with a very educated and enthusiastic guide. We stopped to get an in depth lesson about various kinds of mangrove... More 

Helpful?
Thank sattelite10
Scottsboro, Alabama
Level Contributor
89 reviews
48 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

The wildlife center is a wonderful place to visit, plan on most of the day to take in everything from the museum to the trails.

Helpful?
Thank Hank D
Cleveland, Ohio
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW via mobile

Birds! Birds! Birds! Beautiful place. $5 to get in all day. Great trails and interpretive center or you can just drive through.

Helpful?
Thank tennisjed
Indianapolis
Level Contributor
15 reviews
10 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

We rode our bikes thorough through the park. It is the best way to see the park. There are waterbirds of all kinds. There is an osprey nest next to the road. Make sure that you take some of the side trails. It was one of our favorite places of our trip. We also road to Captiva to finish off... More 

Helpful?
Thank Bob B

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Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge and other visitors
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Stillwater, Minnesota
Grandview, Missouri, United States
over a year ago
Plattsmouth, Nebraska
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Typical questions asked:
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