J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge, Sanibel Island

4.3
#1 of 131 in Parks in Southwest Gulf Coast
Wildlife Area Nature / Park
Considered Florida's prime bird-watching area, J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge protects one of the nation's largest mangrove ecosystems. Named after cartoonist "Ding" Darling, an important figure in the conservationist movement of the 1930s, the refuge provides a temporary home for migratory bird populations and attracts almost a million annual visitors with its "wildlife drive," a windy road through the mangrove forest and the tidal flats. You can watch thousands of birds from the comfort of your car, or drop into the visitor center to see interactive exhibits about great egrets, wood storks, blue herons, white pelicans, cormorants, ospreys, and bald eagles. The center also includes a bookstore that sells nature books and field guides. Our Sanibel Island itinerary planner makes visiting J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge and other Sanibel Island attractions simple, and helps you make a travel plan personal to you.
map
Create an itinerary including J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge

Plans in Sanibel Island by other users

15 days in Florida & San Francisco BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM March, culture, outdoors, relaxing, hidden gems PREFERENCES: March, culture, outdoors, relaxing ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 12 days in East Coast of USA BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: February, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 9 days in Florida BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, kids, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in Southwest Gulf Coast BY A USER FROM GERMANY September, beaches, fast-paced, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 4 days in Southwest Gulf Coast BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 15 days in Southwest Gulf Coast BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES February, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, slow & easy, hidden gems PREFERENCES: February, outdoors, relaxing, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 15 days in Florida BY A USER FROM GERMANY August, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 11 days in Florida BY A USER FROM ESTONIA October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 6 days in Florida BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, outdoors, relaxing, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 11 days in East Coast of USA BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES March, kids, outdoors, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: March, kids, outdoors, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 7 days in United States BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 7 days in Southwest Gulf Coast BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, kids, beaches, popular PREFERENCES: August, kids, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans

Plan your trip to Sanibel Island

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Where to stay in Sanibel Island

Browse hundreds of hotels and read guest reviews on the world's leading online travel agency website.
CHECK IN - CHECK OUT
TripAdvisor
Millions of travel reviews
on TripAdvisor
Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
4,713 reviews
  • Great nature center and miles of walking and driving trails. The tram tour was cancelled on our day due to severe weather but we were fortunate to see wildlife galore. I'm a birder so was excited to s...  more »
  • My husband and I rented bikes and biked thru, it was pretty cool, saw snakes, alligators, baby birds in nest. Would definitely do again!  more »
  • nothing special, did see 8' gator up close, couple dozen birds, be nice biking atmosphere but otherwise highly overrated....not the focal point of the Island as billed!  more »