One would not expect an area of the United States that is a swamp, filled with alligators, snakes, and all other sorts of creatures that bite to provide some of the most beautiful scenes I have ever witnessed.
I was in high school at Palmer Trinity School, and during freshman year, it was mandatory to attend the Outward Bound class trip in the Florida Everglades. Granted paddling in a tiny canoe through mangroves to the 10,000 island area on the West Coast of Florida sounds like anything but a trip, but was I wrong.
Camping out on top of canoes in an opening in the mangroves is not something I would regularly do, but this experience is now a memory I will never forget. The night sky is something to behold when you are in the middle of the Glades in an opening in the mangroves. Having to pull your canoe through a gator hole is also an unforgettable experience for many reasons, particularly that of fearing for your life, but it was all worth it for the experience.
What the Florida Everglades offers is something no other place on Earth can quite rival. From the freshwater mangroves to the brackish water to the ocean, my week in the Everglades forever changed my view of this natural wonder. The Everglades is truly Florida and there is no other way to say you are a Floridian without fully experiencing the Everglades in whatever way you can.