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Guided Tours

Guided Interpretive Tours

Tour routes may vary with water levels, weather, and wildlife activity. Every tour is different as each guide brings his or her own perspective to your swamp experience. Our staff includes well-known authorities on alligator biology, wetland ecology, and Okefenokee cultural history. Most of our guides have family roots in the Okefenokee, they were born and raised here, and several have been leading swamp trips for 25 years or more.

We are the most experienced team of professional guides working in the Okefenokee today and we are here because we love the swamp. Let us share it with you!

Read below for descriptions of the different tours we offer.

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Tour Boat

90 Minute Tours

Visitors enjoy the opportunity to learn about the Okefenokee on our regularly scheduled tours aboard our 24 ft. Carolina Skiffs. These are flat-bottomed boats with ample seating and canopies overhead. They are comfortable, very stable and very safe!

Our 90 minute Tours run throughout our business day and are scheduled subject to visitor traffic and guide availability. You will travel along the historic Suwannee Canal through a tangled forest of bay, cypress, pine and shrubs, then out into the open expanse of Chesser Prairie. Our guides will share their knowledge of the swamp’s cultural and natural history, tell interesting swamp stories and identify plants and wildlife along the way.

We frequently encounter egrets, herons, ibis, sandhill cranes, red-shouldered hawks, and American alligators, as well as otters in the winter and wood storks in the summer and fall. Sometimes we spot deer or raccoons, or, when we are really lucky, a bobcat or a bear. Wildlife activity varies with water levels, season, time of day and reasons known only to the wildlife, of course. The swamp scenery is always spectacular.

The first 90 minute boat tour usually leaves around 9:30am. During the months March–October, the last tour leaves around 4:45 pm. During the months November–February, the last tour leaves around 3:30 pm. They run all throughout the day about every hour. There’s no need to make a reservation unless you have a group of 10 or more. Come to the Okefenokee Adventures building before exploring other areas of the refuge. You can purchase your tickets and, if you have to wait for the tour, you can see the film and exhibits at the Visitor Center, drive the wildlife drive or have lunch in our café while you wait.

Cost: $18.50 for adults (age 12+) and $11.25 for kids (age 5-11).
Children under 5 are free. Please call for group discounted rates.

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Prairie Sunset

Sunset Tours

As the Refuge’s public use partner, we are able to offer you the opportunity to experience the swamp late in the evening after the Refuge waterways are otherwise closed to visitor traffic. We travel into the swamp and out into an Okefenokee prairie sunset. On a full moon evening, we’ll watch the sun set as the moon rises. We always watch for wildlife in the approaching dusk and we return to the Okefenokee Adventures’ landing with stars overhead and the red shine of alligator eyes twinkling in the dark. These tours begin about an hour before sunset and last around 2 hours.  BRING A FLASHLIGHT if you want to shine the red glow of gator eyes.

Cost: $27.50 for adults (age 12+) and $18.00 for kids (5-11).
Children under 5 are free.  Please call for group discounted rates.

Advance reservations are required for sunset tours. They can run on just about any night but we frequently schedule them on weekend nights near the full moon. We can usually accommodate walk-in participants but advance reservations are still recommended.

Currently, the weather is fantastic and there are very few bugs to contend with.

During the peak summer months (usually mid May-thru July) we do not offer sunset tours due to the severity of biting yellow flies during sunset hours.


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Extended Excursions by canoe, kayak or motorboat

Plenty of time to stop and smell the bladderwort

This 4  hour tour by canoe, kayak or motorized boat is for anyone who wants a more in-depth Okefenokee experience – both literally and figuratively – Okefenokee Adventures can accommodate you with advance arrangements. Join one of our experienced Okefenokee wilderness guides for an extended excursion deeper into the  swamp.

These tours are especially suited for birders, photographers and naturalists. Extended tours offer plenty of time to soak in the scenery and relax while exploring the swamp’s beauty.  The time the tour begins will be determined at the time the reservation is made.  Some folks like early morning, some folks want to start in the late afternoon in order to catch the sunset on the way back, and other like to start somewhere in between.

Once a tour is scheduled, we don’t advertise it so they usually end up as private tours. On occasion, we may add people with similar interests but the group size would always be limited to maximize the experience.  You can also request that this tour remains completely private.

Cost: $85.00 per person for 2 or more people and $150 for one person
Children under 5 are free.  Please call for group discounted rates.

A cooler of water and snacks included.  Lunch can be purchased in our cafe’ and be packed up to bring along.

Advance reservations are required.
Please call for group discounted rates.


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Home Sweet Home

Multi-Day/Overnight  Wilderness Excursions

Okefenokee Adventures offers guided and outfitted overnight wilderness trips into the swamp lasting from one to four nights. For a lasting  life experience in one of the world’s great wetland wildernesses, this is the ultimate Okefenokee adventure. Permits are required by the  Refuge and all trips are subject to trail availability and water levels.

The one-night trips are great for the inexperienced canoeists or families with kids. The two-night trips usually begin on the east side and end on the west side at Stephen C. Foster State Park in Fargo. We highly recommend the 2-night, 3-day excursions as they offer the most diversity in ecological habitat and wildlife observation. Depending on trail availability we’d cover anywhere from 5 to 12 miles in a day  totaling 25-30 miles of paddling over three days through pine, evergreen shrub boglands, wet prairies and loblolly bay and cypress forest.  We may camp on a wooden platform or on an island depending on the trail. The platforms are partially covered and all sites have enclosed porta-potty’s.

Only our most experienced guides lead trips, each with over 20 years experience in the Okefenokee. As we lead the way, we will talk about the cultural and natural history of the area, identify wildlife and plants and trees of interest, tell swamp tales and offer moments of silence in  order to hear the sounds of the swamp surrounding us.

 Cost:

One-night, two day trip – $295 per person*
Two-night, three day trip – $395 per person*

*Cost per person with a minimum of 2 people on trip.

Add $100 per person for each additional day up to five days.

Cost includes permit fee, gear, food (real good and plenty of it!) and the expertise of a naturalist guide.

Trails can be reserved up to two months to the day of the trip. So, for example, if you wanted to begin the trip April 15, we can call for the reservation no earlier than February 15. During certain times of the year the trails may book up on the two month day, so the sooner we know what dates you’re looking for, the better chance we have of obtaining the reservation. Once a permit is obtained, the trip will be advertised so that others may join. We keep the group small to maximize the experience.

Private trips may be requested for an additional cost and group rates are available. Call us for this information.

For the best chance of us obtaining a permit for your requested dates, we recommend you contact us at least 2 months in advance.

The swamp is always beautiful but different seasons have different highlights. The fall is a great time because the bugs are few, the weather is fantastic and fall flowers offer lots of color. Winter brings in the migratory sandhill cranes by the hundreds and, if you’ve never heard the sound of dozens of cranes honking away at the same time, it’s quite impressive. Winter temperatures are usually mild but we do have the occasional cold spell. The sandhill cranes are here late November through early February. Spring is beautiful but, because everyone wants to come in March and April, reserving trails may be difficult but not impossible. We avoid the summer months – beginning mid May-August – the biting flies are miserable.


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East/West Excursion – With Camping

If the water is too low to allow for camping in the swamp’s interior, join us for the next best thing.  On the first day of the trip, we’d spend the day paddling through the open, marshy prairies on the east side of the swamp.  These grassy, shrubby prairies dotted with cypress islands offer great opportunities to see alligators and wading birds.  At the end of the day, we drive on over to a campground right outside the entrance to the west side of the swamp and spend the second day paddling through the moss-draped cypress forest on the west side.  So, you’ll experience the beauty and diversity of the open, marshy wet prairies and the cypress forest.  It’s the next best thing to the multi-day overnight wilderness tours – you just can’t camp out in the swamp.  Our most experienced guides lead these trips who will share interesting swamp stories as you learn about the cultural and natural history of the Okefenokee and surrounding area.

Cost:  A full 2 day excursion is $345 per person for 2 or more people and includes all meals and snacks from lunch on the first day through lunch on the second day plus all gear, camping, and shuttle fees.

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East/West Excursion – Without Camping

Some folks request to do the East/West Excursion  but have no interest in camping.  We do offer an option where we do the paddling described above but you would spend each night lodging locally in Folkston.

Cost:  $235.00 per person for 2 or more people and $425.00 for one person.

This includes all gear, shuttle, snacks and lunch.

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Custom Tours

Special interests and special needs may require special arrangements. We are happy to customize an Okefenokee adventure whether it be a moonlight paddle or an overnight adventure. We’re always willing to hear new ideas and suggestions.

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