. This road is also called "the road of crocodiles".
This is Highway 41, leading to the West Florida peninsula.
Our first stop was Gator Park, where we pre-purchased tickets for the AirBoat tour:
Meanwhile, I changed our online tickets to paper ones:
This is a souvenir shop:
Along with the tickets, we were given a set of earplugs because the airboat's engine makes a lot of noise. And the youngest child got special sound-absorbing headphones instead of earplugs, and she was given a life vest.
Here's the airboat. The fact that the park is a vast swamp with depths that range from 7 inches (20 cm) to 3 feet (1 meter) was interesting. The grass grows everywhere, and therefore, none of the usual motorboats can pass through these swamps. Therefore, such airboats are used. Its propeller is raised above the water, and the boat itself has a flat bottom, so that it can glide over the water and grasses. The passengers were taking their seats, as well as our driver/guide:
Here's the first crocodile:
Having left the canal, we were boating much faster and could hear nothing because of the noise of the motor.
Here's another crocodile:
The tour took about 40 minutes. There was a show afterward.
It began with a demonstration of poisonous animals that inhabit Florida. Let me introduce you to this scorpion!
Then a ranger brought a crocodile.
Such a method allows you to get full control of the alligator: it is enough to put pressure on its neck, stopping it from moving:
To protect yourself completely, you need to block the jaws. To do this, you should shut the crocodile jaws with your hands and clamp its chin, all while sitting on the crocodile.
Your hands are free, so you can whip the jaws. If you want to immobilize the crocodile completely, it's enough to just close its eyes with your hands.
After the show, people could take some photos with the animal.
We decided to have a snack in the nearby restaurant:
There we tried real crocodile meat:
Then we took a ride along the Highway 41 and came back to
Florida is one of the few states in the US, where there are toll roads. There are no payment points. One can pay automatically either by the prepaid subscriptions SunPass, or paying the bill sent later by email, but it is much more expensive. The prices are quite affordable: we paid a little more than $2 (as of 2014) for a 21 miles (35 kilometers) journey.
We were very hungry, so we went to a buffet.
The buffet, I must say, turned out to be very good and inexpensive. Sushi rolls, mussels, shrimp, calamari, steaks, chops, and more - cost $13 per adult and $7 per child + tax + tips (as of 2014).
It was tasty!
It was getting dark.
I noticed an interesting sign.