Jun 5, 2011

Peace River Wildlife Center, Punta Gorda, FL

Punta Gorda is full of surprises.  One of the best – and most secret – is the Peace River Wildlife Center, a non-profit wildlife center that cares for, preserves and protects the area's native wildlife.  Injured, orphaned, and displaced animals – 2,000 each year – are taken here, rehabilitated and released back to the wild.  Some animals are injured too much to be released and they are given a permanent home here.

I was attracted here for the sunset.  This is a fabulous place to watch the sunset on the Charlotte Harbor.  Sit in your car, sit on a park bench, sit in the sand on the beach – whatever way you prefer – you'll see a great sunset.  I was a little disappointed with the weather for our sunset, it was too cloudy, but still . . .

The sun, she was taking her time, so we took a stroll while waiting.  There's a great boardwalk over the marsh with signs here and there providing information about the local wildlife.

The boardwalk ended at a tributary where we found this jellyfish doing a little dance for us.

When we got back to the wildlife center, it was closed for the night.  We peeked in at the bald eagles and listened to the noises of the night animals.  We walked to the water's edge for the final sunset and the cool breeze of the evening.

This really was a perfect way to spend an hour at sunset.  It was so relaxing!  I'm going to return someday during their open hours and take a tour.  I might return another day just before sunset, sit in a lawn chair and read a little as the day ends.  Sounds perfect, doesn't it?

3400 Ponce de Leon Parkway
Punta Gorda, FL 33950

Open 7 days a week:
for animal intake:  8-5
for tours:  11-4
call ahead on holidays and inclement weather

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