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University of Florida Bat House

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Address: Museum Road, Near Lake Alice, Gainesville, FL 32611
Phone Number:
+1 352-273-2054
Website
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Description:

The University of Florida Bat Barn and Bat House are the world's largest...

The University of Florida Bat Barn and Bat House are the world's largest occupied bat houses, with an estimated population of more than 350,000. The structures are located on the north side of Museum Road between Village Drive and Radio Road across from Lake Alice on the UF campus. Parking is available in a lot just west of the bat houses near Radio Road. A sidewalk leads from the parking lot to the observation area. A UF parking decal is required Monday-Friday from 7:30 a.m to 4:30 p.m. Parking is free after 4:30 p.m. weekdays, and on weekends and state holidays.

The bats normally emerge during a 15- to 20-minute period after sunset, before total darkness on calm, warm evenings when temperatures are above 65 F. Bats may swoop near those observing the emergence to eat insects attracted to the carbon dioxide in human breath, however they will not attack or harm people when left alone. High winds, heavy rain or cold temperatures will keep the bats in the house for the evening. On warm winter evenings, the bats may come out for a drink of water at the lake and exercise; however they can eat only when bugs are flying.

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Go at sunset

So neat to see all the bats fly! A lot of people left before all of them had come out, so don't leave until it actually starts getting dark. The bats are quite small, so you won't... read more

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed yesterday
Kathryn M
,
Austin, Texas
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288 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 273: English reviews
Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
34 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed yesterday NEW

So neat to see all the bats fly! A lot of people left before all of them had come out, so don't leave until it actually starts getting dark. The bats are quite small, so you won't be able to see lots of definition, but the sheer number of them is astounding. There was a hawk (or some other type... More 

Helpful?
Thank Kathryn M
Gainesville, Florida
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

bring all family members a delight from start to finish a real GVILLE tradition my granddaughter age 6 totally entranced

Helpful?
Thank burmawallah
Gainesville, Florida
Level Contributor
62 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

I've witnessed the running of the bats a few times, since we live near Gainesville. Its pretty neat to be there when the sun goes down and see the bats departing their man-made homes in the thousands. When we were there they took off towards the lake, on the other side of the road from the bat houses. I recommend... More 

Helpful?
Thank burntweeniesandwich
Gainesville, Florida
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

You need to time it right to go there before sunset and wait for the bats to fly out. It's very cool to see millions of bats coming out to hunt.

Helpful?
Thank Thomas C
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Such an amazing site if you have not been yet, you'll definitely want to put this on your list to see while visiting.

Helpful?
Thank Debra K
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

The sight of their transparent wings soaring right above your head is not to be missed. It happens as promised. Tens of thousands of bats leave the the bat houses approximately 5 minutes after the sun goes down every evening. A crowd gathers to watch, and smell, as this evening ritual plays out on this easily accessible University property. Some... More 

Helpful?
Thank D3357DTsandrab
Aspen, Colorado
Level Contributor
58 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Went here a few months ago with my friend and saw SO MANY BATS. They were flying around and it was so cool to see, but they did smell pretty bad. Then, I went here again with my boyfriend last week and THE BATS DIDN'T COME OUT. It was really a shame, we waited for an hour and nothing happened,... More 

Helpful?
Thank Kylison B
Florida
Level Contributor
20 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

The first visit in September was absolutely spectacular. The second one, not so much, but still worth seeing. A must at least once.

Helpful?
Thank Chunguita58
Daytona Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
47 reviews
24 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

Every evening at dusk the bats come out to feed on insects. I mean they pour out by the hundreds. First a few, then more and then the sky is full of them. It's an amazing experience. Caution: some children were traumatized by witnessing bats easily picked off for dinner by waiting hawks. Mother Nature can be brutal. If you're... More 

Helpful?
Thank shellsmedina
Ormond Beach
Level Contributor
27 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We went to Gville in Dec. for our 1st grandsons graduation. Though weve been to Gville many times in the past 20 years, our kids, and grandkids went there. There's always an excitement up there. I really love that city. Always tons of people all over the place, and lots to see and do up there. Two more graduations to... More 

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Thank 730rita

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