Tibet-Butler Preserve, Orlando
Today was the day the girls were most excited for as they were going to Discovery Cove to swim with dolphins. We had to get up early as they had to register for a dolphin swim between 7 - 7:30 am to get the best time slot.
So we got up at 5:45 so we could be ready in time. The girls were running late and it turned out Stacey was not feeling very well. Amy had been up in the night not feeling good and now it was Stacey's turn. They think the Chinese they had last night did not agree with them.
It was touch and go whether they actually went or would try to rearrange. They took some medication and decided to give it an hour to work before deciding what to do. Amy phoned Discovery Cove to make sure a late arrival was okay and was assured it was. Eventually at about 9:00 am they felt comfortable enough to leave and we dropped them off about 9:30 am.
We went to a nearby wildlife preserve that we had read about. It was close enough that if the girls needed picking up early we were not too far away.
The Tibet-Butler Preserve is in the middle of all the craziness of Orlando, but a world away too. The website and reviews mentioned people seeing all sorts of birds and animals so we were hopeful of spotting something.
There is a car park which leads to a building where there are info sheets, stuffed animals and general info about the place. You can then exit at the back to start the trails. There is one that is listed for experienced hikers only, so we avoided that, but did all the others.
Some parts of the trails are over grass or dirt paths and some are along boardwalks. All are very easy to navigate and there isn't anything that would cause most able bodied people have problems. We did find the trail signs a little lacking in some areas, but other than they are fine.
One of the trails, Osprey Overlook leads to a lovely area which overlooks a lake with marshland. Although it warned of alligators and snakes we didn't see anything other than dragonflies and lizards.
We saw lots of bushes with really beautiful purple berries on them and later discovered they are American Beautyberries and the certainly live up to their name.
Unfortunately, we didn't manage to see any major wildlife, but did see some large toadstools and some animal tracks.
After a couple of hours here we went back to the villa and then collected the girls from Discovery Cove at 5:30 pm. They were late coming out as they were waiting for photos.
It also turned out that Amy dropped her iPhone in the water and killed it, so some of their photos may have been lost depending on whether the wifi there was working at uploading them to the cloud. We are going to try to dry out the phone to see if it can be saved.
We went back to the villa, had dinner and relaxed for the rest of the evening. Fortunately, they were both feeling much better by now, so we are planning a day at Animal Kingdom tomorrow.