Fantastic Holidays to Florida
The Sunshine State might be most famous for basking in the rays, but Florida holidays are fantastically diverse. In its cities, you’ll find exotic melting pots of cultural influences, filled with exciting food, music and things to do. Aquatic adventures await to the south among the stunning Florida Keys, while forests and swamps of the Everglades are bursting with wildlife of the furred, feathered and scaled variety, including the famous alligators that have become Florida icons. Of course, the magic and adventure found in the theme parks is not to be missed; be enchanted by the wonderful world of Disney or get behind the scenes of your favourite movies with a trip to Universal Studios. With so much on its doorstep, holidays to Florida can be as action-packed, or as laid-back as you wish.
Arguably one of America’s most entertaining states, Florida is overflowing with attractions and things to do. Fondly nicknamed The Sunshine State, it sits beneath blue skies for over 250 days a year, making it the perfect destination for lazing on the beach and exploring its rich landscape. It is also home to some of the country’s most famous theme parks, with Walt Disney World, Busch Gardens, Universal Studios and SeaWorld all found here. Whether you want to visit the stylish shores of Miami, the mysterious swamps of the Everglades or the bustling city streets of Orlando, there are plenty of things to do in Florida.
Wine and Dine
There are plenty of Florida attractions when it comes to eating and drinking while on holiday here. Each corner of the state boasts a new type of cuisine, with influences from African, Cuban, Caribbean, Spanish and American food all making their mark on the local menus. In bustling Orlando you can find some charming pubs and cafés in the Thornton Park District, or you can seek out the stylish restaurants of Park Avenue in Winter Park. For some fresh seafood there is no better area than the Florida Keys, with Key West’s Duval Street the place to try the catch of the day and a slice of traditional key lime pie.
Action and Adventure
The vast landscapes stretching across the state give visitors plenty of things to do in Florida. For the very best views of the landscape and the local wildlife, take an eco safari across the wilderness of Central Florida, where zip line tours will see you soaring across the treetops. The countryside allows for plenty of exciting activities, whether you want to saunter across the land on horseback, tumble down the rivers in a kayak, or take in some natural sights on a hiking trip. Find some fun on the water in Florida Keys, where you can hop on board a boat for a dolphin cruise, a fishing trip or a glass bottomed boat tour.
As the ideal destination for entertaining the whole household, there are plenty of dreamy settings for couples. You will find romance along the secluded shoreline of St George Island, where you can paddle in the shimmering waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Enjoy slow strolls and horse drawn carriage rides across the streets of the ancient St Augustine, one of the most historical cities in America and home to the Castillo de San Marcos fort.
If you’re looking for some family orientated things to do in Florida, the sand, sea and sunshine along Florida’s coast, which is filled with exciting resorts. Go scallop collecting along The Big Bend, or take some surfing lessons at the Cocoa Beach Pier. The Everglades National Park is home to Shark Valley, where you can enjoy cycling between alligators, and the Ichetucknee Springs State Park offers a real life water rapid ride, which will treat you to some unforgettable views.
Florida glistens once the sun sets, with plenty of pockets that offer lively nightlife amid some impressive venues. Enjoy an entertaining evening in Jacksonville’s The Core, where you can listen to live country music, dance to some Caribbean soul, sip on a classy cocktail or try your hand at a ride on a mechanical bull. Orlando sees evening entertainment along its famous CityWalk, which is crammed with international restaurants, clubs and bars, but it also amuses plenty of partygoers along Church Street.
Seek out some night time charms in the ambient Ybor City Latin Quarter of Tampa, where you can salsa dance, watch a comedy show or take in a film at the cinema. Bar hopping is a fun evening activity in West Palm Beach, where Clematis Street is lined with vibrant bars. For some laid-back entertainment visit the Great Lawn for outdoor film screenings, or head to Centennial Square for a free concert every Thursday.
Recharge and Relax
Whether you need some down time after visiting the theme parks, or you want a holiday of pure relaxation, there are plenty of things to do in Florida that will help you unwind. The Gulf Coast beaches are ideal for sun seekers and water lovers, whether you want untouched beaches or a good selection of amenities. St Petersburg offers a side of culture with its beach life, while Clearwater peers over a 20 mile stretch of coastline that is peppered with secluded islets and coves. For the ultimate in indulgence head to the Florida Keys, which is filled with spa hotels where you can treat yourself to some holiday pampering.
Sun, Sea and Movie Magic
It’s the diversity makes Florida holidays so fabulous. In magnificent Miami, you find a classical American blend of cultures, from Colombian and Nicaraguan to Cuban and Haitian while Orlando has some of the best theme parks in the world on hand. There’s plenty of glitz to be hand on the West Coast, where you can live among the rich and famous, for a few days at least. Head inland and the landscape changes dramatically – you don’t just have to stay in a bustling metropolis, and can instead find somewhere more tranquil to lay your head.
Turn up the Heat
Florida is indisputably the theme park capital of the world and there are a huge variety of attractions for all ages. Plenty of magic is to be found in Disney World Resort in Florida, where kids can meet and greet all their favourite characters and take a spin on the whizzing rollercoasters. The cinematic thrills of Universal Orlando Resort are always a hit, particularly with the Wizarding World of Harry Potter now open, while adventures in nature await at the likes of Snappy Gatorland, dedicated to Florida’s most iconic animal. Whether you’re young at heart, or travelling with kids, holidays to Florida offer some of the most unique experiences in the world.
Almost completely encircled by ocean, Florida holidays enjoy 1,197 miles of coastline, and so there are plenty of stunning beaches offering opportunities to soak in the rays. Head south and you’ll find the hundred-mile string of islands that make up the famous Florida Keys. They are the destination of choice for adventurous souls where you can enjoy fishing, snorkelling, diving, among an array of other aquatic activities. Also save some time just to bask in the natural gorgeousness, and for a dinner of conch chowder with key lime pie for afters.