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

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. By using our Sanibel Island trip builder app , you can arrange your visit to J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge and other attractions in Sanibel Island.
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J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge Reviews
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  • The Darling wildlife refuge is part of the National Wildlife Refuge system and is a birdwatcher's paradise so be sure to bring your camera. It is a "must see" attraction on Sanibel Island. You can tou...  more »
  • So glad that our family took the time to visit this sanctuary during our visit to Sanibel Island. The Information center was wonderful, down to the bathrooms! Saw a lot of wildlife including an alliga...  more »
  • Never know what you'll see on the scenic drive. Do visit the visitors center upon arrival and become acquainted with what you are about to experience on the wildlife drive. If a senior, do use your Se...  more »

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