Millions of people visit Florida each year. Some come for the beaches, others for the theme parks and still others just to visit family and friends. Here are seven things everyone should try to do when visiting the Sunshine State.
Rocket launches are occurring more frequently than ever from the Space Coast near Titusville. Odds are pretty good there may be a launch scheduled during your visit. Night and early evening launches can be particularly spectacular. There are plenty of free viewing areas along the coast.
Every evening is a festival in Key West with stunning sunsets common in the city. Street musicians and abundant pubs add to the experience.
The Skyway Bridge south of St. Petersburg soars into the sky above Tampa Bay offering inspiring views to the east and west. The bridge is so long and high it can be closed due to fog and high winds in the area.
Flowing from Southeast Florida up to Jacksonville, the St. John’s River is one of the world’s largest south to north flowing rivers. It also connects a series of lakes through the state, providing a multi-layer boating experience. Boat rental, air boat, and eco-boating tours are available along the length of the river and its connected lakes.
You can actually drive your vehicle along the hard packed sandy beaches in Volusia County near Daytona. New Smyrna Beach, just south of Daytona, also offers beach driving and is considered one of the best areas for surfing in the state.
Many forget Florida is home to multiple pro sports franchises including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Jacksonville Jaguars, Miami Dolphins, Orlando Magic, Miami Heat, Tampa Bay Lightning, Miami Marlins, Tampa Bay Rays and others. Both Orlando and Miami also have Major League Soccer franchises.
There are some very interesting rural and beach side areas of the state if you are willing to get off of the freeways and explore. The Lake Okeechobee area in Southern Florida is loaded with large sugar production plants and farms. The Polk County and West Central Florida region has abundant orange groves. The Panhandle area is filled with charming coastal towns and homes.
While the beaches and parks are a huge draw, don’t underestimate the value of exploring beyond the traditional tourist areas in Florida. It can make your visit just a bit more unique.