The Tamiami Trail: An Unforgettable 76 Miles
You’ve prepped the snacks, sunscreen and sneakers, and now you’re sitting in our comfortable tour bus barreling towards one of the world’s greatest natural wonders. Alligators, birds and more await and you just can’t get your excitement for what the day will bring out of your system.
But—have you ever heard the saying “getting there is half the fun” ?
Take a second to take in the scenery passing you by out of the window, but also take a moment to reflect on the road the wheels are rolling along on, The Tamiami Trail.
The road, also known as U.S. 41, is a marvel in itself and provides a great contract to the natural marvel it cuts through. Believe it or not, prior to the 1920s, there was no paved road that connected the east and west coasts of south Florida. A millionaire, Barron Gift Collier, determined that a road connecting Miami to Southwest Florida would be economically beneficial to both cities and took on the task of cutting through a truly wild landscape to create the paved road. Using his own money to cut through the Everglades with dynamite, oxen and a team of men, the project struggled because of 95 degree heat, thick humidity, blood sucking mosquitos and of course, alligator-filled terrain. Regardless of the hurdles they faced in battling the wilderness, the workers were successful in dredging the land to build the road above the swamplands to prevent flooding and were able to successfully open the once impassible area to masses of travelers, tourists and traders.
The Tamiami Trail could not have been completed without the help of local Native American guides, a team of engineers and of course, the fortitude of the human spirit. The route officially opened in 1928 and has remained one of our area’s most beloved drives and scenic routes.
When heading to or from the Everglades during our tour, we encourage you to sit back, relax and enjoy the ride—it’s exactly what Mr.Collier would want you to do.