The Venice area is home to a wonderful ecosystem, and it’s chock full of wildlife. The best way to experience this is by getting out into nature on foot. Here are 7 of the best places to spot wildlife in Venice, FL:
Venice Area Audubon Park
One of the best places to see wildlife in Venice is Audubon Park. Open to the public, this park contains a nature center, a butterfly garden and a wildlife viewing platform, and an over 2-mile nature trail. The park is home to various animals, including turtles, alligators, deer and more!
Sleeping Turtles Preserve
The Sleeping Turtles Preserve is located at the end of West Venice Blvd. The preserve is open daily, and admission is free. There are several areas in the park where you can walk or bike on paved trails to see wildlife, including gopher tortoises and box turtles. You can also see alligators and water birds nearby Lake Venetia Park, located just south of Sleeping Turtles Preserve along the North Tamiami Trail (US 41).
Jelks Preserve is a nature preserve located in Venice, FL. It’s a great place to spot wildlife, including birds, alligators, snakes and turtles.
The Jelks Preserve features a 1-mile nature trail that loops around the property through a beautiful cypress marshland with several observation decks overlooking the water. More than 200 species of birds can be seen throughout the year at this preserve. In addition to many different species of migratory birds that stop here during their yearly journeys; there are also resident species such as bald eagles which nest on site every year along with ospreys (ospreys are raptors or “bird of prey”) who have been nesting here since 2006!
Lemon Bay Preserve
The Lemon Bay Preserve is a great place to visit if you’re in the area. It’s home to a variety of wildlife, including birds and wildflowers. There are several hiking trails that will take you through different habitats where you can spot all kinds of wildlife.
The preserve offers wildlife viewing, photography, education and conservation opportunities through its many educational programs each year, such as nature walks and bird banding events. They also host habitat management projects to help restore native plants and animals at the preserve!
Myakka River State Park
Myakka River State Park is in Englewood, Florida. It’s a great place to see alligators and other wildlife. You can visit the park from 8:00 am to sundown, but keep an eye out for snakes if you are hiking or camping overnight. Many hiking trails cross through Myakka River State Park, and canoe trails where you can enjoy a leisurely paddle down the river!
Oscar Scherer State Park
If you’re looking to spot wildlife in Florida, you should check out Oscar Scherer State Park. This park is located on the southwest side of Venice and has over 20 miles of trails through beautiful wetlands, hardwood hammocks and mangrove forests. It’s a popular spot for bird-watching, so take your binoculars along!
Caspersen Beach Park
Caspersen Beach Park is on the Intercoastal Waterway, which means you’ll find all kinds of marine wildlife there. You may even see a dolphin or two!
The park itself has picnic tables and volleyball courts. You can also take advantage of the fishing piers and kayak rentals or fish off the shore if that’s your thing. There are hiking trails through the woods and a nature center with live animals (though it’s not open every day).
If you need to get away from it all after spending time at Caspersen Beach Park, you can head up to Palm Bay for bowling, shopping at Melbourne Square Mall, or south toward I-95 for more restaurants and stores in Viera (just 25 miles away).