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J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge

Features Animals
1 Wildlife Dr, Sanibel Island, FL 33957-3032
+1 239-472-1100
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Review Highlights
Beautiful trip through wildlife

Ding Darling is a wonderful place to visit while on Sanibel. After visiting the gorgeous welcome... read more

Reviewed yesterday
lizzardlee
,
Dahlonega, Georgia
Darling visit

So much to see! If you are a bird watcher you will not want to miss it. We took our beach bikes... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
Tracy L
,
Makaha, Hawaii
Read all 5,296 reviews
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Established in 1945, this wildlife refuge occupies one-third of Sanibel Island and is a prime spot for birdwatching. Fees are required for Wildlife Drive. Wildlife Drive is closed on Fridays. There's an extensive and informative FREE visitor center, a fantastic wildlife drive, tram tours, kayaking, fishing opportunities, picnic benches, and even a free scavenger hunt style game and wildlife spotting app (Discover Ding) if you prefer a self-guided tour.
  • Excellent66%
  • Very good23%
  • Average8%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“ding darling” (613 reviews)
“tram tour” (347 reviews)
“white pelicans” (238 reviews)
LOCATION
1 Wildlife Dr, Sanibel Island, FL 33957-3032
CONTACT
Website
+1 239-472-1100
Write a ReviewReviews (5,296)
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in 113 reviews
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1 - 10 of 4,993 reviews

Reviewed yesterday

Ding Darling is a wonderful place to visit while on Sanibel. After visiting the gorgeous welcome center you can drive, bike or ride a tram through the park all the while enjoying amazing scenery. There are several light hikes that one an easily pull over...More

Thank lizzardlee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 days ago

So much to see! If you are a bird watcher you will not want to miss it. We took our beach bikes through the park. Nice paved road throughout. Be sure to take your camera. I had left mine in the room and wished I...More

Thank Tracy L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 days ago

My wife and I were able to visit the refuge in April. This NWR is located on the west coast of Florida, and is located in the town of Sanibel Island. The refuge was established in 1945 and was created to safeguard the pristine wildlife...More

Thank BluegooseTraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 2 days ago via mobile

Unless you are a serious bird watcher (with binoculars) or an aspiring ecologist, the tour will be truly boring for you. We drove through, getting out of the car many times along the way in hopes of spotting some interesting wildlife. We saw 3 little...More

Thank Teri B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

Located conveniently close to the excellent Bowmans public beach, this Wildlife refuge is a real treat for all ages. Numerous hiking trails and also a “drive thru” nature trail for those who would rather not hike. (Helpful planning hint) The drive thru trail is CLOSED...More

Thank ChefMarkChristopher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

Took a drive and wander through the park this morning. Sadly not a lot of animals to see but might come back tonight and see if that changes. The highlight was the flamingos but didn’t see a single alligator which was really disappointing but hey,...More

Thank Cris H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 days ago

Not as much wildlife as the previous time we were there but that was due to the time of year. We took the tram and our driver was very knowledgeable about the wildlife on the refuge.

Thank Sue M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Ding Darling Nature Preserve and Tarpon Bay are wonderfully preserved natural settings. I've been there numerous times and always enjoy seeing birds and animals in this wild setting. The best way to visit the first time is to take a guided tour, by tram or...More

Thank Vivian B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Wow! Such an incredible experience. We first walked into an area to see birds and alligators but then ended up taking a drive through! A park ranger actually took off the price of a dollar per person for the walking tour then applied it to...More

Thank Katherine Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 week ago

We spent 2 hours here, including a couple short hikes and the 4 mile drive. The folks at the visitors center were SO HELPFUL, it was such a welcoming experience. Crabs, fish, and birds throughout the drive. We'll be back for sure!

Thank loveydovey71321
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Questions & Answers
charleskgto
8 April 2018|
Answer
Response from PrMichaelM | Reviewed this property |
Yes it is. The visitor center is open every day but the wildlife drive does close on Fridays. So don't wait until the last day of your vacation to visit Ding Darling!
0
Votes
Mary S
3 April 2018|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from cvaccaro58 | Reviewed this property |
I didn’t see any, but there are lots of birds.
0
Votes
kbleich2018
16 March 2018|
Answer
Response from Kathy T | Reviewed this property |
Ive never had an issue.
1
Vote
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