With the kids out of school, many parents and guardians are looking for ways to entertain the entire family during the long summer. We are fortunate to have lots of great things to do in Southwest Florida. I have driven by this spot hundreds of times but it has been more than a decade since I’ve stopped.  Wonder Gardens in Bonita Springs is a Fabulous Find for summer and all year round.

Bonita Springs Wonder Gardens

It is a hidden gem on Old 41, a slice of old Florida that has been welcoming tourists since the 1960’s as Everglades Wonder Gardens. Over the years the mission has changed a bit and today it is a non-profit. The gardens are still home to native flora and fauna, but now has more than 300 animals. The historic spot offers all kinds of special events and educational activities.

One of the big attractions at the gardens has always been the flock of American Flamingos. However, that flock is now down to two. Both were hatched on Wonder Gardens property during the 1960’s/ 1970’s. Their pink color is starting to fade as they age but they are still graceful and fascinating to watch in their lagoon with a peaceful waterfall.

Wonder Gardens activities

You can only feed the animals during special, daily animal encounters. With these, a staff  member carefully guides visitors into turtle pins, lorikeet aviaries and along the the alligator pit. During the experience they educate visitors on the animals. Next, they provide food and let you do the work. The lorikeets are the most interactive. They fly around and even land on your head.

Check out this video of the alligators. Some are about to outgrow the pond and will be relocated soon.

The gardens were damaged by Hurricane Ian but everything is opened again with the exception of the welcome center. However, repairs are nearly complete and it is expected to reopen in July. A bonus for locals, Bonita Springs residents enjoy free admission on the first Sunday of the month. Here are some photos. Wonder Gardens in Bonita Springs is a Fabulous Find

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