Lion Country Safari - Florida
On our drive from Lake Okeechobee to the Lion Country Safari KOA just outside of West Palm Beach, we spotted a total of 52 alligators laying along the road in a canal (not all at once.) I had no idea until reading about the history of Lake Okeechobee that the Everglades technically begin at the base of the lake and extend south. We drove through a portion of the Everglades Agricultural Area, which covers about 700,000 acres, most of which is controlled by sugar companies. There were huge fields of sugar cane as far as the eye could see.
Our campground was literally right next door to the Lion Country Safari. We really could hear lions roar from our camper - cool! We took time one day to tour through the drive-through safari ourselves. It was a pretty unique experience since the animals are basically free roaming and you get to just drive by them in your own car. Temperatures have been pretty hot - 80's and high humidity, so I think the animals felt pretty much like we did about the heat - not too much action going on.
I think our favorite animals we saw were the rhinos and chimpanzees. The rhinos were just so big, and we'd never seen so many together or so up close. It was also really fascinating watching the chimps fill up their water bottles in the creek and take little dips in the water to cool off. All-in-all a really special and fun experience!