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Palm trees and a beach in Key West, Florida

Things to do in  Florida

Here comes the sunshine

There’s more to this panhandle US state than just Walt Disney’s Magic Kingdom. An airboat experience in the Everglades showcases one of the world’s largest wetlands, the powdery sand beaches on the Gulf of Mexico offer the perfect getaway, and a walking tour of Miami’s vibrant food scene lets travelers in on some of the eclectic elements that make up Florida’s spirit. From Kennedy Space Center to the string of islands that make up the Florida Keys to, yes, Orlando’s ubiquitous theme parks, the Sunshine State mixes outdoor adventure, diverse culture, and family fun to form an all-in-one destination that delights all ages.

Top 15 attractions in Florida

Bayside Marketplace

Bayside Marketplace, a vibrant waterfront mall in downtown Miami—and the city’s most-visited attraction—sits above Biscayne Bay and features many shopping, dining, and entertainment options. The open-air market has more than 100 shops ranging from apparel to bath products to electronics, and often live performers are on hand to keep shoppers entertained.More

Fort Lauderdale Beachfront

Thanks to more than 23 miles (37 kilometers) of pristine sand, visitors to the Fort Lauderdale beachfront are spoiled for choice when it comes to water sports and sunbathing spots. Spend the day swimming, windsurfing, deep-sea fishing, or more—or stay on land playing volleyball, jogging, or just kicking back in a lounge chair.More

Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge

If you've ever dreamt of swimming with manatees in their natural habitat, Florida’s Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge is where to go. Established in 1983, the 177-acre (71-hectare) refuge is home to America’s largest concentration of the 1,000-pound gentle giants. West Indian Manatees flock to the more than 70 turquoise-colored springs in Crystal River for warmth during winter. With hundreds of manatees in a small area, sightings are frequent.More

Riverwalk Fort Lauderdale

Riverwalk Fort Lauderdale is a linear public park located by the New River in the historic downtown district of Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Its tropical landscaping and winding pathways link some of the city’s best attractions.More

Mallory Square

Overflowing with Key West quirkiness, Mallory Square draws a crowd at sunset thanks to its many restaurants, street performers, and daily Sunset Celebration. During the day, visitors come for some of Key West’s best shopping and to admire the open-air sculpture garden, which pays tribute to famous local residents.More

Flagler College

With its red-tiled roofs and wide landscaped lawns, the campus of Flager College features some of the most beautiful Spanish Renaissance architecture in the country. It is routinely named one of the most beautiful universities in the United States, which makes sense given that it was converted into a school from a former resort.The Ponce de Leon luxury hotel (now the college) was first built in 1888. Today it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and was one of the first buildings to granted electricity by General Electric. Often sunny, Flagler College is also a remarkably pleasant place to stroll through. Its brick archways, gleaming fountains, and tall palm trees are reminiscent of southern Spain.Luxurious details such as Tiffany stained glass windows and painted murals now adorn campus facilities such as dining halls, but that doesn’t make them any less beautiful to behold. Don’t miss the original lobby complete with an elegant 68-foot domed ceiling.More

Intracoastal Waterway Fort Lauderdale

Stretching 3,000 miles (4,800 kilometers) between the United States' Atlantic and Gulf coasts, Fort Lauderdale's Intracoastal Waterway provides easy access to maritime activities and on-shore attractions along the 300 miles (483 kilometers) of inland canals that wind through south Florida's unmistakable sky-high resorts and Everglades ecosystem.More

Kennedy Space Center

The Kennedy Space Center has been hurtling humans and shuttles into space since 1968 and is still a primary site for NASA launches. Parts of the sprawling campus are open to the public with daily tours offering opportunities to interact with real astronauts, test your skills with a simulated space flight, and see artifacts from the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo programs.More

St. Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum

Located at the nation’s oldest port, the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Maritime Museum offers visitors a chance to step back in time by exploring the active lighthouse and various educational exhibits. The black-and-white striped, red-topped lighthouse, built in 1874, welcomes guests to climb up for sweeping views of the Florida coast.More

Little Havana

Vibrant Cuban culture permeates every aspect of the Little Havana neighborhood of Miami, Florida—you’ll find it in the colorful murals, the monuments to heroes past and present, the residents facing off in the domino park as they discuss politics, and in the cigar rollers at work amidst the ever-present aroma of Cuban coffee.More

South Beach

Miami's South Beach neighborhood features 10 miles (16 km) of beaches with a buzzing, carnival-like atmosphere. With a trendy Caribbean-chic café culture and an impossibly hip and sexy nightlife scene, the area is a non-stop people-watching mecca.More

Las Olas Boulevard

You can spend a full day strolling up and down this eclectic South Florida district, which is filled with art galleries, boutiques, and al fresco dining options. The 10 blocks that span all the way to the ocean are lined with palm trees and Mediterranean architecture, and set the stage for a relaxing day or night in Fort Lauderdale.More

Southernmost Point of the Continental USA

The Southernmost Point of the Continental USAmonument is a quick but must-do photo op while vacationing in Key West. The iconic buoy-shaped concrete marker indicates that you’re in the southernmost point of the continental United States, just 90 miles (145 kilometers) to Cuba. Snap a pic and then get busy enjoying island life in this legendary Florida destination.More

Clearwater Beach

With expansive white sand beaches on the Gulf of Mexico, Clearwater Beach is a waterfront Florida community known for its aquatic activities and warm, turquoise waters. Clearwater Beach is an ideal launching pad for kayaking, parasailing, boating, and biking. It’s known as being more low-key than its southern neighbor, the bustling St. Pete Beach, and many consider Clearwater Beach to be among the best beaches in America.More

Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum

Nestled among towering palm trees on Key West, the Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum allows you to see where one of the United States’ most famous writers and greatest thinkers lived and worked. The Hemingway Home is a National Historic Landmark and Literary Landmark, and recorded at the Library of Congress as an Historic American Building.More

Trip ideas

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Recent reviews from experiences in Florida

Unique Florida experience
Susan_D, Mar 2023
90-min Everglades Airboat Tour in Central Florida
The ride gave a unique vantage point to see nature and Florida , highly recommend .
Great Time!
Star_A, Mar 2023
Wild Florida Drive-Thru Safari and Gator Park Admission
We were looking for something different to do on Spring Break and happened to stumble upon for website.
Worth the Trip
Angela_B, Mar 2023
Fort Lauderdale to Key West Tour with Optional Add-ons
It was a great way to see the Florida Keys, for a day trip, on our trip to Fort Lauderdale.
Great kayaking tour!
Maryann_S, Mar 2023
Wekiva River Guided Kayak Tour
A great way to spend 4-5 hrs outside of the usual crowded typical Orlando area attractions & view the natural beauty of Florida’s environment.
Must do
Ernest_S, Feb 2023
Naples Florida Electric Trike Tour
The tour allowed us to see things that we never would have known about
Incredible experience
Lorraine_H, Feb 2023
3 hour small group all inclusive manatee swim with free photo package !
The springs were cool to see.
Better than I could have imagined!!!
Ralaina_T, Jan 2023
1-Hour Evening Airboat Ride
I really loved how peaceful it was out on the lake when we stopped and got to see all of the cool birds!
The Everglades for me 2023
Barry_N, Jan 2023
Everglades Airboat Safari
I could not understand the drivers comments in English, too fast and too accented.
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All about Florida

When to visit

The Sunshine State is—you guessed it—quite sunny year-round. Summer is undoubtedly the most popular time to visit, though snowbirds and locals love the cool(er) weather winter brings. The shoulder seasons are ideal for most visitors. Spring brings outdoor fun like SunFest in the south and the Interstate Mullet Toss in the Panhandle. Fall is just as wonderful (hurricanes permitting), as manatees start arriving in Silver Springs State Park and international boat shows fill the waters.

Getting around

No doubt about it: You need a car to get around Florida. Interstates 4, 10, 75, and 95 act as arteries connecting cities like Miami to St. Augustine, Tampa to Orlando, Naples to Fort Lauderdale, and Pensacola to Jacksonville. Intercity travel varies; most cities have extensive bus routes and ridesharing is always an option. With flat roads and a beach never more than 60 miles away, you’ll be thankful for the flexibility—and air conditioning—a rental car provides.

Traveler tips

Florida’s theme parks and beaches are the major draw, but this state is so much more than its main attractions. Venture into the interior of the Panhandle and get lost in natural bliss in places like the Apalachicola National Forest and Winter Haven Chain of Lakes. Plan your itinerary with history in mind, too. Two of the country’s first incorporated African-American cities were founded in what’s now Sanford and Eatonville, and they’ve got the Southern and soul food to prove it.

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People Also Ask

What is Florida known for?

Florida is known for its spectacular beaches, sunny weather, diverse cities, and world-renowned tourist attractions. Florida’s Gulf Coast is known for its serene sunsets while the Atlantic Coast is known for surfing and deepwater fishing. Central Florida is known for theme parks while South Florida is known for ritzy nightlife.

What are 3 things Florida is famous for?

Three things Florida is famous for include Walt Disney World® Resort, the Kennedy Space Center, and Miami’s South Beach. Disney World encompasses four separate theme parks and two water parks. Kennedy Space Center is NASA’s hub for rocket launches while South Beach offers lavish dining, entertainment, and leisure activities.

What are some things you can only do in Florida?

Some things you can only do in Florida include visiting Walt Disney World® Resort, Kennedy Space Center, and the nation’s oldest continuously-occupied European-settled city, St. Augustine. Florida is also the only state in which you can drive from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean in under two hours.

Where should I go in Florida for the first time?

Your first trip to Florida should include a visit to one of the Gulf Coast beaches. Clearwater Beach, near Tampa, is regarded as one of the best beaches in the country. Other notable Gulf beaches include those found in Destin, Sanibel Island, Siesta Key, and St. George Island.

What is the prettiest spot in Florida?

One of the prettiest spots in Florida is Captiva Island. Located west of Cape Coral and adjacent to Sanibel Island, this island in the Gulf of Mexico is a tranquil place with a laid-back vibe. Scenic views, miles of shoreline, and a variety of leisurely activities make Captiva Island memorable.

How many days should I spend in Florida?

You should spend anywhere from a weekend to two weeks in Florida, depending on your desired experiences. Orlando’s theme parks alone warrant a full week, while cities like Miami and Tampa can be explored intimately within a weekend. You will also want to plan extra travel days if driving across the state.


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