by Katie Brown
I’d like you to go with me to the Swamp. Yes, you heard right…the swamp!!! Just a short drive from the Golden Isles of Georgia lies the “Land of the Trembling Earth,” or what most of the locals refer to as Okefenokee…..bet you can’t say that 3 times!!!
Okefenokee Swamp Park is the headwaters of the Suwanee and St. Mary’s Rivers. This National Wildlife Refuge covers a half million acres, and is also part of the National Wilderness System! This is the largest swamp in North America.
The Seminole Indians named Okefenokee the “Land of the Trembling Earth.” The Seminoles had miles and miles of canoe trails leading all the way down to the Gulf of Mexico. Today visitors to the park can board the Lady Suwanee, rent canoes, enjoy nature shows, and take a guided bout tour into the swamp. I highly recommend all of these!!!
While visiting the Okefenokee I saw several American Alligators. In this park the Alligators are free range, so be careful where you park! We saw 2 alligators sun bathing in the parking lot! These are photos of some of the American Alligators in one of the nature exhibits. The park is also home to deer, bears, otters, snakes, butterflies, turtles, frogs, fish, and birds. You couldn’t pay me to cross that bridge!
My next adventure in the swamp was to boarded the Lady Suwanee for a 1.5 mile train ride through the swamp and tour of Pioneer Island. The Lady Suwanee is a 36 gauge replica steam engine. The train ride was fun, and enjoyable for all ages!!
After the tour on the Lady Suwanee I took in one of the interactive nature shows, and was able to pet a baby alligator. They also had several snakes on hand, but I declined on petting those….
My next adventure was my favorite while at the swamp. We went on a 1 hour guided boat ride through the swamp, and it was BEAUTIFUL!!!!
Okefenokee Swamp Park is located 8 miles south of Waycross, Georgia off U.S. 1 South on Highway 177. Look for our billboards in Waycross, GA.
From I-95: (Exit 29) In Brunswick, GA take Highway 82 West Exit 6 (Mile Marker 29) Go approx. 45 miles and take Hwy 177