Top Places to Visit in FloridaSarasota, Orlando-Walt Disney World, St. St. Petersburg, Florida, Key West, Naples, Miami Beach, Sanibel Island, St. Think of Palm Beaches as a quick pass to the best of Florida.
A general term for cities in Palm Beach County, Palm Beaches includes places like West Palm Beach, Palm Beach, Wellington, Delray Beach, Jupiter, and Boca Raton. The wide variety of activities available in the Palm Beaches is the region's strength. You can go shopping, surf, dive, have brunch with your puppy, watch an international polo match, relax on 47 miles of coastline, meet sea turtles in rehabilitation, take a two-night speed cruise to the Bahamas, enjoy a Broadway musical at the Kravis Center and catch a soccer ball at a game of spring training baseball. In the West, you can book airboat tours of the Everglades or get up close and personal with rhinoceroses, giraffes and zebras at Lion Country Safari, a cage-free zoo spread over 600 acres.
If you're looking for a luxurious resort stay, Palm Beach and Boca Raton have everything you need. There's nothing better than The Breakers in terms of luxury, they'll treat you like royalty, but The Colony Hotel, Eau Palm Beach and the recently reinvented The Boca Raton are all harbingers of a modern era in Palm Beach. Across the bridge, West Palm Beach has a big-city vibe without the big-city headaches due to traffic and congestion. Take the free trolley between Clematis Street, The Square and the waterfront, or head to Grandview Public Market in the up-and-coming Warehouse District.
As the oldest city in the United States, St. Augustine has had plenty of time to do it right. Settlers arrived in the middle of the 16th century and some places that still stand, such as the Fountain of Youth and the Castle of San Marcos, date back almost to that age. It's a walkable city, full of intrigue; whispers of the past swirl in every cobbled alley.
Augustine, learning about the area's history (preferably through a ghost tour once darkness envelops the city) is a fact. But there are also new additions designed to please modern explorers, such as Ice Plant for a cocktail and Alligator Farm for a perfect encounter with Florida's animals. Augustine's annual Nights of Lights at Christmas to see the city shine in the glow of three million lights. For the perfect combination of history and cozy luxury, book a stay at the adults-only Collector Luxury Inn %26 Gardens, where you can tour the gardens with the property historian and meet for expertly prepared cocktails at The Well Bar.
For a taste of old-world elegance, St. Francis Inn, built in 1791, is a bed and breakfast that perfectly captures the spirit of the city and everything it loves about cozy accommodations. Once your appetite has worked up, go to Michael's Tasting Room, The Floridian or O, C for dinner. White's, a historic restaurant in the heart of the action.
Or, for something a little more casual, stop at A1A Ale Works for the best root beer of your life, served alongside a spectacular view of the Lion Bridge. Spanning 113 miles, from Key Largo to the southernmost point of the continental United States on modern Key West, the Florida Keys are a true paradise; pick any key along the way and we guarantee you a tropical getaway without the need for a passport. Fill your itinerary with activities such as boating, diving, fishing, snorkeling on coral reefs, manual feeding of 10-foot shad at Robbie's, and overall, enjoy one of the best destinations in the world for a relaxing vacation. Key Largo has the adults-only Key Largo Bungalows, the first all-inclusive in the Keys, while Playa Largo is the perfect option for families or anyone who loves an action-packed trip; there are swimming pools, water sports such as sailing, parasailing and kayaking, and even a garden with hammocks for reading.
There are also plenty of ways to enjoy adventurous and outdoor activities in Florida once you've escaped the tourist traps of Orlando. Some distance from the Orlando area, but still in central Florida, is the Blue Grotto, a 100-foot crystal-clear cavern that is popular with divers, and also Rainbow Springs State Park, where you can float quietly down the Rainbow River in an air chamber. The slower paced and lesser-known Crystal River is a quiet, secluded town on Florida's west coast. Crystal River offers little of a culinary scene or nightlife, but it's home to Florida's most amazing natural beauty, especially for those who love being on the water.
A kayak tour with Get Up And Go Kayaking is the perfect way to explore the enchanting springs of Crystal River, and visitors in winter have a good chance to paddle alongside any of the hundreds of manatees that migrate to the springs each year. While touring Hunter Springs, Jurassic Springs, and Three Sisters Spring, you can also spot dolphins, turtles, birds and other wildlife. Nearby Plantation on Crystal River offers simple, no-frills beachfront accommodations spread over 232 acres in Kings Bay. For an even more delightful Florida vacation, head to one of the legendary live mermaid shows at Weeki Wachee Springs State Park, about an hour's drive south of Crystal River (yes, making mermaids is a real job).
When it comes to the best places to visit in Florida, no place is as sizzling as Miami. It's a global city with everything you could expect in terms of good food, good hotels and fun places to party. In South Beach's Instagram-friendly Art Deco District, you'll find bubbly creativity and the kind of old and new style that keeps Miami on the map, and nearby Wynwood Walls, there's street art and towering murals galore. A little further north of Miami, bustling Fort Lauderdale is another coastal metropolis where you can spend action-packed days and nights.
Ride the Ale Trail for beer and craft snacks, or hop on the water taxi to navigate the city. It's like an over-water streetcar system, suitable for what some call the Venice of America because of Fort Lauderdale's abundant waterways. Hop off the water taxi on Las Olas Boulevard to enjoy the best shopping and dining in town. Best of all, the new and modern Brightline connects Miami to Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach in an hour or less.
Tampa and its surrounding neighborhoods form a tri-urban paradise on Florida's Gulf Coast. Ride roller coasters at Busch Gardens or head to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium to meet the slippery stars of the Dolphin Tale movies. Clearwater Beach is a quiet coastal city that consistently ranks among the best beaches in Florida, if not the world. Visit during the Pier 60 Sugar Sand Festival to see monstrous sand carvings in the kind of beachfront art festival that only Florida can offer, and stay at Opal Sands, half a mile from the festival beach, and each of its 230 rooms is oceanfront.
In St. Petersburg, the area is also something of an art and culture mecca that goes unnoticed, with murals and museums, including the impressive Dalí Museum. The Florida Panhandle is made up of Pensacola, Panama City Beach, Destin and Tallahassee, the capital of Florida. A popular spring break spot, the Panhandle relies heavily on tourism.
Another Amelia Island attraction is Florida's oldest lighthouse, which is proud to be 67 feet tall. Charming oceanfront cabins and inns line Amelia Island, so visitors can choose from charming accommodation. Head to historic downtown Fernandina Beach on the island for shopping or a bite to eat at the Eight Flag Island Shrimp Festival, an annual tradition dedicated to a shared love of shrimp. Cedar Key is a rural island town with lots of pastel-colored houses.
Visitors can expect to stroll along secluded beaches and botanical gardens, as well as nearby natural springs for swimming and paddling. Cedar Key is a simple place, so it goes unnoticed by Florida tourism, but it's a good spot for anyone looking for a vacation that's a little quieter than the most popular spots in the state. Naples is another gem on Florida's west coast, the area is called Paradise Coast for a reason. Romantic and luxurious, Naples is known for its beautiful white sand beaches, extensive golf courses, luxury restaurants and exclusive shops, a kind of sister city to Palm Beach, located directly across the state on Florida's east coast.
If retail therapy is on the agenda (and it should be in Naples), head to Fifth Avenue South and Third Street South to lower your credit limit. Or, if you're more into natural attractions, head to the Naples Botanical Garden, Clam Pass Park or the Naples Zoo. Art lovers will also find a lot to love at Artis Naples, a multidisciplinary organization that houses the Baker Museum and the Philharmonic of Naples, or in any of the impressive art galleries that dot the city. A trip to a national park may not be the first thing you think of when you think about visiting Florida, but the state is full of unique national parks (expect alligators and palm trees instead of bison and geysers) and Everglades National Park is its crown jewel.
With 1.5 million acres of preserved wetlands on the southern tip of the Florida Peninsula, the Everglades is actually a slow-moving grassy river, comprising unique habitats such as coastal mangroves, sawgrass swamps, pine forests and more. It is a paradise for wildlife lovers, full of alligators, snakes, fish, more than 360 different species of birds and even endangered species such as the Florida panther, the American crocodile and the West Indian manatee. For those eager to explore, trails and guided tours are available; main entrances are in Shark Valley, Florida City near Homestead and Everglades City on the Gulf Coast. Visit the park during the dry season from November to April for cooler temperatures, more active wildlife and fewer mosquitoes.
This place is perfect for 2 travelers and is equipped with air conditioning and free wifi. Check out my blog post dedicated to Naples, Florida, here. When most people think of Florida, they think of the sun, theme parks, orange juice and alligators. But this former Spanish colony, which became the 27th state to enter the Union, is much more than that.
Panama City Beach, on the Florida Peninsula, offers 27 miles (43 km) of white sand beaches on the Emerald Coast. The beach is a popular destination for residents of the southern United States, as well as tens of thousands of high school and college students on spring break. It got its name because it was said that the bay in which it is located was more beautiful than the Bay of Naples in Italy. In addition to its beautiful urban beach, nearby wildlife refuges make it a popular tourist destination.
These include Everglades National Park, Florida Panther National Wildlife Reserve, and Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary, which has a 2.5-mile long boardwalk that winds through it. Naples also has vibrant arts and shopping districts. Sanibel Island is located right next to Fort Myers in the Gulf of Mexico. It is connected to the mainland by a roadway.
It is known as a peaceful and natural travel destination, ideal for families. Wildlife refuges occupy more than half of this long, narrow island, whose beaches are also popular as shell hunting spots. This island of less than 7,000 permanent residents may have hosted pirates in the days of yore, if local legends are to be believed. Fort Lauderdale, no longer the spring break destination of popular imagination, is today a sophisticated cultural center with an increasingly exclusive social scene.
Located in the Atlantic Ocean, about 23 miles (37 km) north of Miami Beach, it is also known as the “Venice of America” due to its extensive canal system. The city has an impressive tourist infrastructure with many hotels, golf courses, marinas and museums. The city's Port Everglades is one of the busiest cruise ports in the world, with mega-ships departing daily to the Caribbean, Mexico and beyond. A popular spot with visitors is Pier 60, a long fishing pier that houses a children's playground, snack bar, and artists throughout the day.
In the evening, you can buy handicrafts from local artisans. Stroll along Beach Walk, where you'll find waterers and showers to get rid of the sand. If you come alive when the sun goes down, Clearwater Beach has a lively nightlife scene. One of the country's best natural treasures, the Everglades has a unique combination of ecosystems including swamps, subtropical jungles, sawgrass grasslands and the largest mangrove complex in the Western Hemisphere.
Located in South Florida, much of the Everglades is protected within Everglades National Park and provides shelter for a wide variety of birds, fish, animals and reptiles, including endangered species such as the West Indian manatee, the American crocodile and the Florida panther. One of the largest national parks in the U.S. In the US, Everglades National Park has four different visitor centers that provide education about the Everglades, as well as a variety of exceptional tours and experiences. From the Gulf Coast Visitor Center, visitors can arrange boat trips to the Ten Thousand Islands, a maze of mangrove islands, see manatees, dolphins and pelicans along the way.
Also from the Gulf Coast Visitor Center, visitors can rent canoes and kayaks to explore the Everglades on self-guided tours. The Ernest Coe and Flamingo visitor centers also offer ranger-led tours and programs. An airboat tour is one of the most exciting ways to experience the Everglades. In addition, numerous hiking, cycling and fishing trails are also available within the national park.
The Tampa Bay Area, in the Gulf of Mexico, includes Tampa Bay, a large natural harbor, and several popular cities, such as Tampa and St. Tampa is home to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers of the NFL. Nestled between the Gulf of Mexico and Tampa Bay, northwest of St. Petersburg, Clearwater is a popular family vacation destination known for its spectacular 3-mile long beach, wonderful climate and long, narrow barrier reef.
The beach is full of luxury hotels, resorts, bars and restaurants. Take the children to see the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, where injured dolphins and sea turtles are taken to recover and rehabilitate. Watch the game at Bright House Field, where the Phillies baseball team comes to train in the spring. Stroll along Pier 60 to watch the sunset and street performers entertain the crowd.
Enjoy the shaded boardwalk paths through the Lake Moccasin Nature Park, or take a tour of the bay to see playful dolphins in their own environment. Things to Do in Clearwater Delray Beach is a small coastal town in Florida known for its beautiful sandy beaches, but also for the lively arts community in its eclectic center. The Pineapple Grove Arts District is full of incredible art galleries and public art. The Cornell Art Museum, established in 1913, is famous for its collection of contemporary artworks.
There's also the School of Creative Arts and Fieldhouse, established in 1925, and much more. A variety of art festivals are held throughout the year. First Friday art walks are a great way to explore the city's art scene, see a show, or attend a concert. And of course, there are great restaurants and cafes where you can enjoy fresh food and enjoy some people watching.
Stretching nearly 120 miles from the southernmost tip of Florida, between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, is a chain of tropical islands called the Florida Keys. This coral archipelago begins about 15 miles from Miami and ends in the uninhabited Secas Turtles National Park. The last inhabited key is Key West, a popular tourist destination that locals call Key Weird, with its popular bars and shops on Duval Street and the daily sunset celebration in Mallory Square. Anywhere in the Keys you can rent a boat and go fishing, snorkeling or diving, rent a kayak and explore the mysterious mangroves, sample unique local cuisine, stroll through picturesque and colorful streets and sit in one of the many rustic beach bars to soak up the spirit of the Keys.
Things to Do in the Florida Keys Located 45 km north of Miami, on Florida's southeastern coast, Fort Lauderdale is a popular tourist destination famous for its beaches and picturesque sailing canals. The best place to start your exploration is on The Strip, a long and wide promenade that runs along the ocean and is filled with chic outdoor restaurants, lively bars, chic boutiques and luxury hotels. Visit 1901 Stranahan House, Fort Lauderdale's Oldest Structure Still Standing. Visit the International Swimming Hall of Fame, take a hike or boat trip through Hugh Taylor Birch State Park, and visit the NSU Fort Lauderdale Museum of Art to see what local artists are doing.
Things to do in Fort Lauderdale Gainesville is the bustling college town with the massive University of Florida campus. It is the largest city in north-central Florida, about a 90-minute drive from Jacksonville and Orlando. The city is lush and surrounded by rural land and the 21,000 acres of Paynes Prairie Wilderness at the south end of town. There are more than 30 miles of walking and biking trails where you can watch birds, wild horses, bison or alligators.
Floating on the cool spring-fed river in lush Ichetucknee Springs State Park is a city tradition. Visit the Florida Quilt Museum, Quilt Trail and Quilt Festival. Stroll through the spectacular forests and gardens of Cedar Lakes, with its waterfalls, bridges and small lakes. Things to Do in Gainesville A major port city in Northeast Florida, at the point where St.
John's River joins the Atlantic Ocean, Jacksonville is a large, modern city and a regional business center. The nearby Barrier Island and its wonderful beaches are a perfect place for swimming, diving and surfing, and the most popular are Neptune Beach and Jacksonville Beach. One of the most famous championship golf courses is the TPC Sawgrass at Ponte Vedra Beach, which is also home to the PGA Tour. Visit Kingsley Plantation on Fort George Island to see how slaves and slave owners lived.
Take the kids to Jacksonville's lush tropical zoo to see elephants up close. Visit the 16th century Forth Caroline National Monument to learn about the times when the French ruled this part of Florida. Things to Do in Jacksonville Key West is the westernmost inhabited island in the United States, a part of the coral archipelago of the Florida Keys, closer to Cuba than Miami, colorful, lively and unforgettable. Stroll Duval Street with its bars, shops and restaurants, explore narrow streets and pastel-colored conch houses, visit the Hemingway House and Museum, dive or snorkel on spectacular reefs and enjoy, with everyone else, the daily spectacle of watching the sunset at Mallory Square, surrounded by artists street vendors of all kinds.
Visit the Key West Butterfly and Nature Conservatory, where colorful butterflies fly freely from flower to flower. Check out the 65-foot Key West Lighthouse and enjoy views of the ocean around you. Things to Do in Key West Panama City Beach is a bustling coastal city on the Gulf of Mexico, in northwest Florida. Its fantastic beaches and rich nightlife make it a popular destination for thousands of students during spring break.
Younger children prefer the Gulf World Marine Park, where they can swim with dolphins, or the Shipwreck Island Waterpark, with its pools and water slides. Hike through Camp Helen State Park to see large quiet dunes in Phillips Inlet, take a walk on Lake Powell, and swim in the Gulf of Mexico. Take a boat tour to see the dolphins or line up at Russell-Fields Pier. Things to Do in Panama City Beach Everglades is the largest subtropical wilderness area in the United States, a 1.5 million acre wetland located in the southernmost tip of Florida.
It is a World Heritage Site and an International Biosphere Reserve. The Everglades are made up of coastal mangroves, pine forests and sawgrass swamps that are home to hundreds of species of animals, some of them rare and endangered, such as the manatee, the American crocodile, the Florida panther and the leatherback turtle. The best way to experience the magic of the Everglades is to take a leisurely stroll along one of the many waterfront trails, a guided boat tour of the Ten Thousand Islands or Florida Bay, or a trolley ride through the fascinating Shark Valley. If you're lucky and patient, you might see an alligator sunbathing on a log, as well as a deer or one of the many wading birds.
Sanibel is a lush, green island in Florida's Gulf of Mexico, just a short drive from Fort Myers. The island is surrounded by magnificent beaches and is famous for its stunning sunsets, historic lighthouses and thousands of shells that provide endless entertainment to tourists who collect them as souvenirs. The best thing to do in Sanibel is absolutely nothing, at one of the many luxury resorts across the island. If swimming, diving, boating, and watching the sunset aren't enough for you, visit J, N.
Things to Do in Sanibel Sarasota is a large, modern city south of Tampa on the Gulf Coast, once famous for being the winter home of the Ringling Brothers Circus. Today, the Ringling Art Museum hosts numerous events, concerts and plays and exhibits works by former masters, as well as modern art. After spending time on the fine sands of Lido Beach and Siesta Key Beach, go see sharks, manatees, sea turtles and 100 other marine animals at the Mote Marine Laboratory. Visit the lush tropical gardens of the Sarasota jungle and feed the free-roaming pink flamingos, the bird of the state of Florida.
Attend a fascinating Ski-A-Rees waterski show in Sarasota, or rent a kayak or paddleboard and go see dolphins up close in the bay. Things to Do in Sarasota Located just north of Florida's Gulf Coast, 28 miles long St. George Island is one of Florida's last virgin inhabited islands. The island has miles of beaches with few people to relax on the sand, crystal clear waters for swimming and wild swamps for wildlife viewing.
George Island is a small, quiet beach community where skyscrapers and chain stores are not allowed. Nearly half of the island is protected in St. George Island State Park, perfect for watching sea turtles and birds, canoeing, hiking and swimming. Fishing in the park is great.
Don't miss the Cape Saint George lighthouse from 1852, the views from above are spectacular. Located on Florida's Northeast Coast, St. Augustine is known as the oldest city in the United States. Its beautiful center is full of well-preserved Spanish colonial architecture.
Another reminder of the city's Spanish past is the Castillo de San Marcos, a 17th century Spanish fortress made of stone that offers stunning views of the ocean and the St. Augustine's beaches are magnificent, with fine white sand, and the most popular are St. Hike through lush Anastasia State Park, a protected wildlife sanctuary with 4 miles of pristine beach, a nature trail through ancient dunes, estuary tidal swamp and sea hammocks. Petersburg is located on a peninsula between Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, a large modern city called Sunshine City because of its permanently pleasant climate.
The city's beautiful beaches attract millions of tourists. In addition to fine sands, the city also has excellent golf courses and fishing trips. Among many excellent museums, the Dalí Museum is a must see, as is the Museum of Fine Arts and the Chihuly Collection, with some of the most beautiful glass works in the world. Try attending a Florida Orchestra concert at the Mahaffey Theater and enjoy a stroll through the huge local market to enjoy some of the freshest and most delicious regional artisanal foods.
You're reading 25 Best Places to Visit in Florida Back to Top. Located in the subtropical region of Southwest Florida is Naples. And with a nickname like Paradise Coast, it's no secret what awaits you along its shores. The waters are a resplendent blue.
And sunsets are an explosive mix of colors. The Florida Keys are a 120-mile long chain of tropical islands that curves around the base of the Florida Peninsula, connected to the mainland by a series of bridges. Outside of downtown and the University of Florida campus, you can find some of the best places to visit in Florida. As a die-hard Florida Gator fan, it pains me to admit that Florida State University has a great campus.
Destin is a city in northwest Florida, in the Florida Panhandle, on a peninsula that separates the Gulf of Mexico and Choctawhatchee Bay. Nestled along the coast of Florida's Panhandle, Destin is a popular Florida summer destination that has an excellent boardwalk. More sun, sea and sand can be found in the south, where the Florida Keys launch about 120 miles along the Florida Strait. Florida's parks are spectacular, from the world-class Everglades to the underwater paradise of Biscayne National Park, Florida.
Some of the best hotels to stay in Florida are Mandarin Oriental in Miami and Isla Bella Beach Resort in the Florida Keys. Amelia Island is one of the best places to visit in Florida for a relaxing beach vacation, away from the noise and hustle and bustle of the busiest places. Fort De Soto Park is located on the South Island and is one of the best vacation spots in Florida for camping, fishing and hiking. Southwest Florida's white sand beaches are Florida's ideal destination for families looking for a Gulf Coast getaway.
However, in the past few years, there have been some “changes” in terms of luxury accommodations and Florida hotels (or more exclusive options, so to speak), and here are a few that may be worth considering for your next trip to Florida. Pensacola is a charming old coastal town in Florida, the westernmost city on the Florida coast, with the beautiful island of Santa Rosa separating it from the Gulf of Mexico and creating calm and safe sandy beaches perfect for children. . .