Gatorland Zoo

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Orlando, Florida

Gatorland Zoo Orlando Reviews

Cho Cho
81 reviews
Alligator capital of the world Aug 12, 2013
I have been living in Florida for nearly two years but I'd never been to Gatorland, even though it's just a ten minute drive away from where we live in Orlando. Well, last week we finally made it. One reason was we wanted to take advantage of the special admission fees for the month of August, only $10 for Florida residents which is $15 off the usual rate of $25. Great incentive!

At the entrance there is a giant 'Gator mouth.' We got there before the opening time of 10am, and though it was a weekday, a lot of people were already waiting in line to purchase tickets. We even had to wait our turn to take photos at the Gator mouth!

Although billed as the "Alligator captial of the world," Gatorland is actually a theme park and wildlife preserve. Besides the estmated 3,000 alligators and 90 crocodiles of all sizes, there are also exotic birds, reptiles and other animals at this park. I was expecting the place to smell bad like the crocodile farm in Thailand, but surprisingly I found Gatorland to be quite clean and well maintained. This is very much a family oriented venue. There is also a childrens playground, and plenty of attractions and activities to keep you and your kids busy all day long. You can also watch 3 different shows such as the Up Close Encounters, alligator feeding and gator wrestling. These shows are all included in the entrance fee.

All of the above shows are highly entertaining. In the first show called Up Close Encounters, the two staff/performers kept taking out crawling creepy creatures from boxes behind them and showing them around to the apprehensive audience. Then they asked for volunteers to hold the big long python (see photos). Needless to say, I didn't volunteer as I am basically a coward, LOL!

The next show was the alligator feeding where two of the staff playfully competed against each other to see which one could make the alligators jump highest to catch the chicken they were holding above the water. I was relieved to see that they were not live chickens.

In between shows we visited the petting and feeding area for deer and goats, the aviary (which was really a bird enclosure) to feed the cute parakeets. The Swamp Walk was interesting too. It was going though a long walkway in jungle like surroundings to observe the flora, fauna and other wildlife.

We also took in the Gator Wrestling performance which was really not you or someone from the audience wrestling with an alligator, but sitting on its back. The gator had his mouth tied of course, except when the professional handler put on his act. He must have spent considerable time training and practising with alligators as he was quite good. Not surprisingly, there were many people, both young and old, wanting to have their pictures taken with the alligator. I noticed that all the shows were packed, and by the time we finished with this last show the park was crowded with even more people coming in.

Next, we took a mini train ride through the park which cost an extra $2. This wasn't too exciting as it was only a short ride and didn't cover the whole place. Before leaving we went into the gift shop to browse around. Oh yes, we even bought a book there to give as a present to my young grandson whose birthday is coming up soon.

Oh, I almost forgot, there is zip lining there too. I think the cost is $70, and as the ads say, you soar through the air and above the alligators. However, we didn't do this thrill ride which is fast becoming popular all over the country, as we did it already in Nicaragua a few months ago for only $35.

As mentioned earlier, this park is really a mini-zoo with the emphasis on alligators and crocodiles. Covering an area of 110-acres it is relatively small, but one can easily spend a whole day there for an educational and/or entertainment tour.
Sign at entrance
Sign showing the founder of Gatorl…
Inside the jaws
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dweyand07 dweyand07
1 reviews
Typical Tourist Trap Mar 07, 2011
I thought it would be great experiences to go to Gatorland to see all the gators. But, I was disappointed because we paid about $160 for five people. It wasn't worth it at all. The wrestling match wasn't even a match, but more of a demonstration of how to wrestle the gator. I would rather use the money I wasted there at other locations.
0 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
jamartin39 jamartin…
113 reviews
Gatorland Zoo Jul 21, 2009
Not your typical zoo Gatorland specializes in gators and crocs. It is a gator sanctuary. It’s a hands on place they have programs where you can be a trainer for a day; they have a petting zoo and some other interesting animals you can hold like tarantulas. They have different shows throughout the day you can sit watch and learn about different critters. There is a train that goes through the park and has a guide narrating the whole way giving you some history and info on some of the attractions you pass. Our guide jumped off the train to catch a snake he saw in the trees, and got bit quite a few times. He actually seemed to enjoy it, probably not so much the snake biting him but trying to catch it so he could show him to us. You can walk throughout the park and explore check out the hundreds of gators that call this unique place home. There is a lot to do and it is a fun learning environment.
My cousins outside Gatorland
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
rdog980 says:
Do not taunt the aligators they get mad
Posted on: Jul 22, 2009
bkretzer says:
I loved Gatorland when were down there in 1999. I enjoyed feeding them and having alligator nuggets for lunch!
Posted on: Apr 27, 2008
bvlbaseball bvlbaseb…
5 reviews
A must visit while in Orlando, Florida Apr 25, 2008
Welcome to Central Florida, now you cannot not go back home until you visit Gatorland. Gatorland is located @ 14501 South Orange Blossom Trail Orlando, FL 32837 | 1-800-393-5297

As you might be aware, Florida is full of alligators and this attraction let you get a close encounter to the wildlife. Gatorland also serves as a santuary and research facility for alligators. You can also see other wildlife animals that call Florida home. This park should take you just a few hours to explore.

Any questions please let me know.

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photo by: Reephboy