10 Best Places to Visit in Florida

Martina Rosado
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Panama City Beach

The southernmost city in the state of Florida, Panama City Beach sits just around the corner from Alabama, Georgia and Mississippi. In many ways, it is the tail of a big fish that has been bitten off.

A former fishing village, in the past few decades it has been transformed into a tourist destination. It is still home to a small fishing fleet, but also features a wide array of attractions designed to draw in visitors.

The beach is, of course, the main reason to visit, and visitors can enjoy strolling along it, going for dips in the ocean or simply enjoying the sun. In addition, it is home to an array of water sports.

It caters to families as well as singles, and a number of large resorts cater almost exclusively to the latter.

While Panama City Beach is mostly known outside of the state for its reputation as a place where spring breakers gather to engage in drunken sex-filled debauchery, it is actually a respectable place.

There is a lot of history here, as well as beauty, and if you’re interested in fishing, it is a pretty good place to take the family.

Naples, Florida

There is a reason thatNaples has been one of the most visited cities in the US for over 200 years. The Gulf Stream creates the perfect place to find a true relaxation experience, with the beaches, sunshine, family fun and exclusive experiences waiting to be enjoyed at every turn.

While you may even find yourself under the sea with manatees,sea turtles, rays, sharks, grouper, porpoise and the scuba experts, you can also find a beautiful white sand beach, miles of pristine river beaches, wide open fields to discover, golf facilities, historic homes and attractions, which reflect the Eastern needs for architecture, antiques, jewelry, dining, shopping and entertainment.

The Sunshine State‘s natural beauty and more than 400 miles of coastline have made Florida a haven for both natural and manmade wonders. While Naples offers the drama of art, history and culture, it also serves as a true example of a city that is always ready to offer a warm welcome and invite you to experience the Sunshine State.

Sanibel Island

If you’re ready to do some real sunbathing and swimming, Sanibel is the island for you. It’s long white sand beaches are far away from the hustle and bustle of the big city.

It’s not as crowded as the big beach cities so you won’t have to worry about running into wannabe celebrities in their never-ending competition for attention.

It’s also home to the largest sailing yacht club in the world, where some of the biggest yachts can be found.

There are also several great historical fortifications, forts, and structures on the island.

The fishing here is world famous, and there’s plenty of things to do if you don’t want to stay on the beach.

You can go sailing in the gulf and pick up a killer deal on a T-Shirt from any of the stores that sell them.

If you’re looking to laze around, there’s plenty of that as well.

Fort Lauderdale

Florida.

There are so many opportunities for fun in Fort Lauderdale, it’s easy to spend an entire day finding new activities. Here are some highlights:

Boat Tours

Forget about traditional land transportation. This is a city built for boats! Boat tours will take you to the mangroves, which hosts an eco-system of birds and animals, as well as to the beaches.

Paddleboard down the Florida Waterway

If you’re looking for adventure, check out Water Sports Fun in Fort Lauderdale. This is a paddleboard tour that will take you through the mangrove eco-system and around the beautiful shoreline of Fort Lauderdale.

Lonely Planet Travel Guide

Lonely Planet Travel Guides cover every destination in the world, so you won’t have to worry about getting confused about how to get to the attractions. If you’re planning a trip, or just looking for something to do in Florida, make sure you check out the guide.

Nightlife

Fort Lauderdale’s nightlife is unique in that it has a mix of mainstream nightclubs and the trendy, unique venues. Whether you are in the mood for a beer, dancing, or just relaxing with a trivia game, you will find a place that suits your mood.

Clearwater Beach

Image Source: Clearwater Beach

Clearwater Beach is located west of Tampa in Palm Harbor. It’s known for its beaches, wetlands, and the Gateway Clipper Fleet, a fleet of former World War II troop ships that have been converted to friendly seaworthy ships.

Clearwater Beach boasts an average of 308 days of sunshine a year, perfect weather for an outdoor activity. Enjoy sea kayaking in the area’s three protected marine preserves; catch a glimpse of manatees in the Royal Palm Marina; or enjoy a swim at the beach.

Clearwater Beach is also famous for going beyond the ordinary and taking part in rare adventures. Take the Treasure Ship Tour to see where the pirates hid their loot when they sunk the Spanish Man O War, explore the massive underwater cave system in a glass-bottomed boat, or see the many varieties of birds encountered on a kayak tour.

Image Source: Clearwater Beach

Southern Dunes Park is a 37.5 acre, wildlife-rich beach park that tops out at 16 feet. The park has nature trails that lead to dunes, a boardwalk, and a small beach. There is a concession stand and a restroom both located on the boardwalk.

Everglades

Everglades National Park is an artificial wetland in southern Florida, United States. In the western third of the Everglades are the Shark River Slough and the Belle Glade, an extensive mangrove swamp. The Everglades host numerous rare and endangered species indigenous to the area.

The national park was established in 1947 and has become a popular tourist destination. It is the third most visited national park in the United States and received about two million visitors in 2005.

In 2010, the park was listed among the top 10 most endangered historic places in the National Trust for Historic Preservation's annual list of America's most endangered historic places.

The Everglades are a huge watershed flowing about 1,400 miles…. The Everglades system is a complex network of natural waters and wetlands that flow through wide areas of southern Florida.

The origin of the name "Everglades" has long been the subject of speculation. Some believed….…the Florida peninsula was named for the vast perennial grasslands of the region, "ever ” at, meaning ”always," or "ever green," because of the never-ending tropical vegetation it once supported.

Tampa Bay Area

Tampa Bay is the most reliable hurricane area in the entire US. Furthermore, the state as a whole has a climate in which conditions tend to make people optimistic about the weather. This positive attitude impacts both the county and the entire region of Tampa Bay in ways that make levels of expectation for the conditions in the Tampa Bay area higher than in most of the country.

This means that if a hurricane approaches near the area of Tampa Bay, the water levels are likely to rise, rather than rise much less because of a lack of hurricanes. In addition, the Gulf of Mexico, which is bordered by the area of Tampa Bay, tends to be a generally calm and stable body of water.

If a hurricane does approach the Tampa Bay area, the region can expect flooding. It’s more likely to see flooding there than in other parts of the US. There is some chance of a hurricane approaching while you are visiting, but the chance of it happening while you are actually at a place to stay is very low.

The temperature can go up and down in the Tampa Bay area, though if it cools off, it might rain more. The temperatures will also vary by season, even within a few miles of one another. However, this variation isn’t as great as in other parts of the US, especially since the seasons have a much lesser effect there.

Orlando

If there is one place on Earth that is everything, it’s Orlando. Everything outside of the city (or even inside proper) is nothing.

Once you go outside the city, you’ll see plenty of people who have never left it, truly hating the state of Florida. But just outside of city proper, there is plenty to love about the land.

The rest of Central Florida is near heaven.

Sure, you still have the traffic, crowding from tourism, and crime, but it’s all so much better than the rest of the state’s. If you can’t handle a little drive it’s not the end of the world, these places are pretty awesome.

Miami

Miami is the largest city in Florida, with a population of 562,410. It is the county seat, and principal city of Miami-Dade County. Miami is a major tourist destination, known for its coral reefs, tropical climate, Art Deco and Jazz landmarks, early incorporation of African Americans, Cubans, and Jews, and its infamous crime and violence. Miami is considered a global city, with strengths in commerce, entertainment, media, fashion, culture, sports, technology, education, art, music, and tourism.

The Miami metropolitan area is the most populous in Florida and the 25th largest, with a population of about 5.5 million. Its tri-ethnic makeup includes European, African, and Native American groups. The city of Miami is classified as a global city. In 2008, its estimated population was on a record high from the previous year. The city’s media topography includes large urban with a strong local economy, high concentration of higher education, national media industry, large scale neighborhood, and high dwelling percentages.

Florida Keys

The Florida keys are a tropical chain of islands and islets located between Biscayne Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. It is one of the thirty-seven regions in the state of Florida in the United States of America. The Florida Keys “region” consists of the following:

The Florida Keys are a vacation destination and one of the most popular tourist destinations. There are numerous resorts in the area.

The Keys that can be found in the region are cays and islets, and there are several government reserves that are under protection.

The climate in the keys is tropical, with little rainfall and a limited temperature range, but it self-fires two seasons. The dry season is from November to May, and the hot season is from June to October.

Hurricane season can be between June and November, but the keys are not often affected by hurricanes.

Hurricanes can also be found in the Atlantic Ocean to the south of Florida and Indo-pacific Ocean to the north, and have been known to swipe Florida, even cause extensive damage and loss of life.

The Florida Keys are easily accessible from Florida, either by air or by ferry. Ferry services are currently running from Key West to the Miami and the Bahamas.