Monday, September 13, 2010

Oatland Island

We spent Labor Day at Oakland Island. Following a little of my own advice I gave to a fellow blogjam member. Well it was the first time out there, so it was a new experience for me. How would I rate it? It kind of depends. If you go on a day that is not quite as hot and buggy, it was excellent, unfortunately for us it was in the low 90's and we had lots of bugs... and no bug spray. So bring bug spray!

We stopped off for lunch at the Crab Shack on Tybee because we left right around lunch. I have to give that place a thumbs down, though I really did try to give it a thumbs up. Basically the only seafood my wife eats is fish, and they don't have one fish on the menu... just oysters, clams, shrimp, and crabs. Also they don't/can't fry anything you can take it that they are healthy or they don't want to bother with the expense and mess that frying oil would create. I got the lunch special, Shack Stew and 1/4 pound of shrimp. That could not even be considered an appetizer, it tasted ok just not enough of it, and the shrimp were hard to peel.  Anyway, I might come back when I have some crab/oyster lovers with me, otherwise, not so much.

So back to Oatland Island. There is apparently some renovations going on, so you can't go in the "big building" however none of the animals reside there, so you park behind it and start walking. And that is the only complaint I have about our trip. When you have kids in tow, you would like to get off the road and away from any oncoming cars. There are swaths were you simply have to share the road. But once you pass that big building, you can relax a bit.

We entered the alligator/bird aviary first. I had no idea gators went out on the tidal marshes, but apparently they do, or can. Next we saw the cougars, which were asleep, as all cats are want to do. The Bobcat was there... but we couldn't find him. Next we walked along the boardwalk and got up close to some crabs. From there we saw the foxes and on to various bird cages. Then on to see some deer, and then the wolf wilderness and a bison. There are other small animals, like armadillo, snakes, bats, that sort of thing. Also this is more like a walk through the woods, which I like. My four-year-old loved it. And I think they had her in mind when they built the place.

It isn't as nice as most zoos, but she could see a lot better than most zoos offer (with the elevated view stands and glass/Plexiglas windows).  It doesn't have the big draws like elephants or monkeys, but it doesn't cost as much either ($35 can get you in for a year), also it is really close. A lot closer than any other zoo. So give it a try. 

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