Florida Vacation Destinations
Select the Region for Your Perfect Florida Beach Vacation
Tallahassee is the state capital of Florida and home to many universities and colleges. The beach nearby offers endless stretches of fine sandy beaches, with hardly another person in sight. Destin, Panama City Beach and St George Island are quiet resort towns. St. George Island has a reputation of having one of the best State Park Beaches in Florida. It is the favorite destination of the local residents who live nearby.
Jacksonville is centered on the banks of the St. Johns River, and it's beaches are all located on an unnamed barrier island. Jacksonville is also an international seaport, handling millions of tons of cargo every year. On nearby Anastasia Island is historic St Augustine Beach, with nearly 5 million visitors arriving there every year. Farther north is Amelia Island, which has has over 13 miles of beautiful sandy beaches.
Daytona Beach is a popular "Spring Break" destination, usually during the first 2 weeks in March. Annual NASCAR events at the Daytona racetrack means visitors come all year round. Nicknamed the Space Coast, Cape Canaveral is where U.S. spacecraft are regularly launched. Other local attractions include New Symrna Beach, and Titusville. Over 8,000,000 tourists come each year to Daytona Beach, it is one of the few places in the world where it is permitted for one to drive a car on the ocean beach.
Orlando is best known for theme parks, over 51 million visitors come each year to Orlando, making Orlando one of America's most visited cities. Nearby Kissimmee is known for baseball, hosting spring training for the Houston Astros, and other amateur sporting events. Haines City and Lakeland have beautiful historic districts, with Lakeland having the largest on-site collection of Frank Lloyd Wright buildings in the world.
Tampa Bay Gulf Beaches
Tampa Bay is well known by sporting fans due to it's many sporting complexes and arenas, but it's Gulf beaches are some of the most popular destinations for travelers from all around the world. These beaches are world famous with pure white sand and gentle surf, they are also some of the best kept beaches in the United States. The Gulf side beaches stretch miles down the gulf coast from Clearwater, to St Pete, then Anna Maria Island, down to Sarasota. Nearby Sarasota is Siesta Key, which has a reputation of having one of the best beaches in the world.
Fort Myers was originally established in the 1800's along the Caloosahatchee River. Visitors to Fort Myers historic downtown enjoy waterfront dining and entertainment. Sanibel and Captiva are both barrier islands. Captiva Island was split off from Sanibel Island by a hurricane nearly one hundred years ago. These two islands are reknown for their beautiful beaches, abundant shells and wildlife refuges that cover half of Sanibel Island. Nearby Marco Island is the largest barrier island within the Ten Thousand Island chain along Florida's southwestern coast.
Miami was originally inhabited by native American Indians for more than a thousand years. Today it is home to International Banking, and the most western edges of the city extend into the Everglades, a subtropical marshland that include cypress swamps, and the mangrove forests of the Ten Thousand Islands. Miami Beach is a combination of both man made and natural barrier islands and has been known as a resort hotel destination since the late 1900's. North of Miami is Ft Lauderdale, nicknamed the "Venice of America," it is a major yachting center, with thousands of restaurants and nightclubs.
The Florida Keys were created from ancient coral reefs that begin about 15 miles south of Miami and extend in an arc westward to Key West, and the uninhabited Dry Tortugas Islands. Key West travel on the Seven Mile Bridge. On the east end of the Seven Mile Bridge is Marathon, a major sports fishing destination, it's bountiful reefs around Marathon make it popular for diving, snorkeling, and spearfishing.
Click on map marker to learn more about each Florida location.