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Kissimmee Off the Beaten Path Boggy Creek & Bok Tower Gardens

What comes to mind when you think of Kissimmee? Is it the coolest theme parks? The greatest golf? Maybe a little (or a lot) of fun in the Florida sun? Whatever it is, chances are you're only scratching the surface. That's because there are so many unique attractions here just waiting to be explored — and we're going off the beaten path to discover a few with you. When planning your next vacation in Kissimmee, remember to add these attractions to the itinerary.

Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures

If it's fun you seek, head to Boggy Creek. That's where you'll find Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures. Here, grab a front-row seat for an unforgettable journey on the water. Guided by U.S. Coast Guard Certified Master Captains, you can explore the headwaters of the Everglades while learning all about the wildlife that calls this part of the world home. Oh, and you'll also see some of that wildlife up close, including turtles, birds, and even alligators!

An airboat at Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures
Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures

More of a land lover? That's okay. There's still plenty to enjoy here, including the 32-acre landscaped park. Take a stroll along the brick pathways and explore the Florida nature under a canopy of oak trees. Visit the replica Native American village to learn more about Florida's Jororo tribe and how they once lived along the Kissimmee River. This living-history museum is full of exhibits, artifacts, and presentations that are as fun as they are fascinating. Sure, you're on vacation, but entertainment and education are always a perfect mix.

While exploring the park, be sure to meet Boggy Creek's family of juvenile alligators. Watch them relax by the water's edge, and, if you're up for it, buy a bag of gator chow and tell all your friends back home about feeding an alligator in Kissimmee. Hungry for a little human chow of your own? Stop by the Boggy Bottom BBQ to grab some delicious grub.

Juvenile alligators at Boggy Creek
(Photo: @kyleleea)
A Native American from the Jonoro tribe gives a presentation

Bok Tower Gardens

One of Kissimmee's best-kept secrets has actually been welcoming guests for nearly a century. Since 1929, the lush grounds at Bok Tower Gardens have been a treat. You can listen to the enchanting sounds of the Singing Tower carillon, explore the Pinewood Estate, and more. 

The Singing Tower daily carillon concerts between 1 and 3 p.m. are the main events at the gardens. Now, you may be wondering, what is a carillon? That's a good question. A carillon is a musical instrument containing dozens of bronze bells in a variety of sizes. There are only about 600 of these instruments in the world and 185 in North America. We're so lucky to have one right here in Kissimmee. The person who plays this instrument is called a carillonneur. Over the years, there have been four carillonneurs at Bok Tower Gardens (four performers over nearly 100 years? They must really love their jobs.). From October through May, enjoy performances by Bok Gardens' current award-winning carillonneur, Geert D'hollander. These beautiful concerts can be heard throughout the gardens and require no additional ticketing. Simply sit back and take in the sweet sounds — you'll be so glad you did.

A view of the Bok Tower through the lush green trees
(Photo: Bok Tower Gardens)

But there's more to the Bok Tower Gardens than music, including, well, gardens! In fact, the gardens here are the work of the legendary landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr. Picturesque and meandering, these gardens offer a natural escape. Making your way through, you'll find plenty of spots to rest and take in the flowering foliage and tall trees. Be sure to keep your eye out for the wildlife of Bok Gardens, including giant gopher tortoises and 126 different species of birds. It's no wonder the Bok Tower Gardens are a designated spot on the Great Florida Birding Trail.   

Beyond the manicured gardens, you can also explore the Pine Ridge Trail, a ¾-mile walking path highlighting the longleaf pine habitat. And for the kids, there's Hammock Hollow, the perfect spot for the little ones to explore and play. Here, your kids can cool off in the sparkling springs River Walk, visit larger-than-life sculptures, and even see flying fairies along Fairy House Trail.

Lush green space around Bok Tower Gardens
(Photo: Bok Tower Gardens)
A butterfly lands on a flower in Bok Tower Gardens
(Photo: Bok Tower Gardens)

There's So Much to See in Kissimmee

From International Drive to the road less traveled, there's something for everyone here in Central Florida. Do you have a favorite off-the-beaten-path attraction? We'd love to hear all about it! Share yours with us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. And for more insider picks on where to go and what to do on your vacation, subscribe to our newsletter.

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