Florida didn’t get called the Sunshine State for nothing. Being a subtropical state, this region in the United States rarely receives snow. This is probably the reason why thousands, both local and international tourists, travel here to enjoy and have a wonderful and meaningful holiday vacation.

The State of Florida is composed of different cities, each with its unique tourist attractions. There are too many places to visit and too many things to do in Florida.

For the thrill-seekers, the state is blessed to have the longest coastline in the US where you can go surfing. You just have to be careful for shark sightings are reported on some famous surf spots. Sky diving is also available for the adrenaline junkies out there. It’s just a matter of knowing where to sign up for this extreme sport to properly plan your itinerary.

Various theme parks also abound in Florida, including the famous Legoland Florida in Winter Haven. If you are into museums and having that cultural experience, you can check out the heritage city of St. Augustine or go on a trip to the Morikami Museum at Delray Beach. Also enjoy unique dining experiences and shopping finds when you visit Florida.

To be able to help you maximize your trip and help you identify the best places to visit in Florida, here’s a list of key cities that you should include in your itinerary when planning your holiday vacation. You can choose to start your holiday vacation in Orlando or Miami depending on your itinerary. These cities are must-visits so plan your trip well and prioritize where you want to go and what you want to do in Florida, USA

10. Everglades City

Want to go on an all out Indiana Jones adventure? Then all you need to do is visit the Everglades National Park in Everglades City. Brace yourself for alligators and manatees, and if you are in luck, you might catch the migrating birds in the region. This is the ultimate place for adventurers to go biking, go on canoe trails, fishing, camping, diving and all those other outdoor activities.

9. Daytona Beach

For race car enthusiasts, you can also include a trip to the Daytona Beach, which is best known for the Daytona International Speedway. This city is home to the biggest racing competitions in the world. During off season,  you can take a guided tour to check out the race tracks. You can get the chance to visit NASCAR garages too.

8. Tampa

One great destination to add to your holiday trip in Florida is including a visit to the Busch Gardens in Tampa. This facility is an African-themed animal theme park where guests can interact with the animals and enjoy world-class thrill rides. This would be the perfect getaway for those planning to go on vacation with their families.

animal encounters at florida

7. Panama City Beach

Panama City Beach is the Spring Break Capital of the World. During the months of March and April, high school and college students travel to this city in Florida to relax and have a great time. So if you want to experience how it is to be on an actual spring break and get loads of fun, be sure to schedule your visit within those months.

There are loads of attractions suited for families too including excellent dining experiences, a wide variety of beach activities and world-class accommodations that are sure to make your stay enjoyable.

6. Cape Canaveral

During your trip to Florida, you can also visit Cape Canaveral, also known as Cape Kennedy. The famous John F. Kennedy Space Center is located here. This is where every manned space flight from the United States is launched. In fact, if you make your holiday booking and visit Florida on January 30, 2017 and December 1, 2017, you’d get the chance to experience an actual spacecraft launch while touring the Space Center. It is said that the launch can be seen even if you are in Jacksonville.

go on a cruise in cape canaveral

If you love riding on cruise ships, you can also book for your cruise adventures at Cape Canaveral and go on a 5-7 day Bahamas, Caribbean or Disney cruise.

5. Jacksonville

If water sports is your cup of tea, then Jacksonville should be part of your I.T. Jacksonville, Florida offers the thrill seekers different water adventures including paddle boarding, kayaking, fishing, surfing, cruising and even flyboarding.

If you are into shopping, clubbing and dining, Jacksonville Landing is also a must-visit destination.

new year in Jacksonville

Do you love celebrating Christmas? Jacksonville also boasts of the best Christmas lights display, which is worth visiting. So if you are planning to book your holidays in Florida, it is best to drop by its largest city to witness  first-hand the amazing Christmas decors, complete with dancing Christmas lights from all corners of the city.

As an added bonus, travelling up north to visit Jacksonville will also give you the opportunity to visit Savannah, the oldest city in Georgia where the movie Forrest Gump was filmed because it is near Jacksonville. Savannah is also one of the top places to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. So if you are visiting the US for the holidays, be sure to check out this place too.

4. Key West

Whether you are seeking for thrill and adventure or simply want to relax during your vacation, a visit to Key West is also worthwhile. Aside from the availability of museums and parks in this city, you could also go on sunset cruises and island tours. Eco tours are available where you can go kayaking or sign up for dolphin encounters. For cultural lovers, theaters, art galleries and antique shops are also available.

3. Miami

Miami is a place worth checking out too. Aside from riding the waves and surfing at South Beach, you could also step back in time and visit the famous Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, which showcases European-styled gardens complete with fountains and statues and beautifully maintained room mansions built during 1910. You could also never go wrong with trying out the different food offerings in the city as well as enjoying the night life scenery.

gardens in Miami

Every March, thousands gather in this bustling city in Florida to join the an annual outdoor electronic music festival, more widely known as the Ultra Music Festival so if you want to enjoy great music in the company of the world’s best DJs, don’t forget to consider booking a trip to Florida every March.

2. Orlando

Any Harry Potter fans out there? Universal Orlando just recently opened the second phase of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter with the addition of the Diagon Alley.

Diagon Alley is a famous wizarding alley and shopping district, which is based from the Harry Potter series written by J.K. Rowling. This 7-series book has sold more than 450 millions copies worldwide and their counterpart film adaptation has consistently stayed on top of the highest-grossing films. Which is why the addition of this theme park in Universal Orlando will thrill those Harry Potter fans worldwide.

In London alone, a 2-hour Harry Potter walking tour has been made available where one can visit the places where the book’s author got her inspiration. With the addition of Diagon Alley in Orlando Florida, it would be guaranteed that European families who are Potterheads, or fans of Harry Potter will definitely book their trips to spend their holiday vacation in Orlando.  It is also said that even non-Harry Potter fans will still enjoy the life-like replica of the Diagon Alley.

Aside from The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Orlando Resort also boasts of 2 theme parks, 1 water park, 1 night-time entertainment complex and 4 resort hotels to make every tourists’ stay a memorable one.

watch a basketball game in Orlando

If you are a fan of NBA, you can head to the Amway Arena and watch a game.

1. Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista

Topping the list is Disneyland! Your stay in Florida will never be complete unless you visit the Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista. The place is so huge that it can be considered a city. The resort sits on 42,000 acres of land making it the most visited vacation resort in the world.

disneyworld resort

It houses 34 themed resort hotels, 4 theme parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Hollywood Studios, Disney’s Animal Kingdom), 2 water parks (Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon, Disney’s Blizzard Beach), 4 golf courses and numerous recreational venues for different folks. In fact, to make the most out of your visit, it is wise to spend at least 1 week in Disney World and experience the magical world of Disney. That’s how awesome and huge it is.

 

There you have it. Whatever time or season you visit Florida, be sure to plan it well to maximize your trip to be able to see all those amazing attractions in the Sunshine State.

Photo credit: My Travel Remedy



This is a travel blog of Doi Domasian. Her nature to explore both new and familiar places and share it with the rest of the world is what keeps this wanderer going and seeking for thrills and adventures. Due to her passion for travelling, she decided to leave the corporate world and started living the life of a nomad.

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