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Best time to visit Florida

Loop Road Scenic Drive

Drive through dwarf cypress forest and spot lots of tropical fauna of Everglades

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Loop Road of Everglades goes through South Florida’s iconic undeveloped wilderness that is full of wildlife. It is a 38-km (24-mi) two-lane road that winds along Tamiami Trail in Big Cypress National Wildlife Refuge. The Drive starts at Monroe Station (a former Tamiami Trail service station dating back to late 1920s) and ending at the 40-Mile Bend Check Station, as it is about 40 miles from Miami.

You may see hundreds of birds, alligators, and otters fauna. Some sections of the road are paved, some are gravel or dirt. In the summer months, certain sections of the road can be underwater, and temperatures are soaring. Also, mosquitoes are known to be especially active in the summer. That's why the best time for completing the Loop Road Scenic Drive and for visiting Big Cypress National Preserve is during the dry and cold season from November to April. Every year, about a million people visit the park, and around 70% of them come in the cooler period.

Loop Road is surrounded by cypress trees and water. Some parts of it allow visitors to park and look around, watching birds and alligators. The road also provides access to hiking trails, campgrounds, and backcountry. Visitors can also walk by the canals along the Tamiami Trail or visit overlooks at the Big Cypress Swamp Welcome Center and Oasis Visitor Center. Lots of activities are available at H.P. Williams Roadside Park and the Kirby Storter Roadside Park. The Florida Trail at mile 10.1 of the Loop Road Scenic Drive is the most popular hiking route with access from Tamiami Trail. You can find more information in the detailed guide by the Big Cypress National Preserve.

If you are not afraid of alligators, you can explore the Big Cypress on a canoe or a kayak, floating to the Turner River or Halfway Creek.

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