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Best Places To Get In Touch With Nature

It's hard to imagine in the hustle and bustle of busy South Florida that you can find a quiet, restful piece of nature but there are several nature centers that offer quick getaways from the concrete jungle into the wilds of South Florida.
Secret Woods Nature Center

Secret Woods Nature Center

2701 West State Road 84
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33312
(954) 791-1030

Secret Woods Nature Center is a place to find peace of mind and quiet restfulness amid a beautiful forest and wetlands. Secret Woods has two nature trails, a 3,800 square-foot walk-through butterfly garden, the Monarch Interpretive Center with exhibits including a live, working bee hive and an environmental education classroom with native plants and trees to learn about the flora and fauna in the area.

Anne Kolb Nature Center,jpg

Anne Kolb Nature Center

751 Sheridan Street
Hollywood, FL 33019
(954) 926-2480
The Anne Kolb Nature Center at West Lake Park is a remarkable mangrove eco-system that can be explored by paddle, bike or foot. Canoes and kayaks are available for rent to paddle through the tidal channels deep in the mangroves. There is a pair of boardwalks that cross the mangroves as well or visitors can take a U.S. Coast Guard inspected 25-passenger covered boat for a narrated tour of the tidal creeks and open waters of West Lake.

Fern Forest Nature Center

Fern Forest Nature Center

201 Lyons Road South
Pompano Beach, FL 33068
(954) 970-0150

Fern Forest Nature Center is comprised of 254-acres of forested nature and beauty.  It was purchased in 1978 as a Designated Urban Wilderness Site. There is a visitor center, an amphitheater, boardwalks, a picnic area, hiking trails and an arboretum.

A.D. Barnes Park

A.D. Barnes Park

3401 SW 72 Ave.
Miami, FL 33155
(305) 662-4125
A.D. Barnes Sense of Wonder Nature Center Website

A.D. Barnes Park is a 65-acre park, home to The Sense of Wonder Nature Center and Trail set within one of the few remaining Pine Rocklands in Miami-Dade County. As a result, it has become an "oasis" for migrating birds and, according to the National Audubon Society, is one of the best places to see birds in Miami.  The Nature Center is also home to the Miami-Dade Fire Department's Anti-Venom unit's reptile collection.

Bill Sadowski Park and Nature Center

Bill Sadowski Park & Nature Center

17555 SW 79 Ave.
Miami, FL 33157
(305) 255-4767
Bill Sadowski Park Website

Bill Sadowski Park and Nature Center offers three distinct habitats within thirty acres; pineland, tropical hardwood hammock, and a drained Everglades slough.  The main building houses a live animal exhibit of native freshwater fish, arthropods, reptiles and amphibians, including an 822-gallon freshwater aquarium.  A nature trail leads visitors through various plant communities to a canal where canoeing and fishing are available.  Encompassed within the park grounds are also a native tree arboretum, and a bird watching area.

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