For those who’ve determined to familiarize your self with Florida a little bit extra, you’re in for a tremendous time. The state is sufficiently small to road-trip in a couple of weeks however numerous sufficient to maintain you hooked. Assume sizzling springs, off-shore fishing and snorkeling, one-of-a-kind nationwide parks, turquoise Caribbean waters, and tradition, historical past, and artwork distinctive to no different a part of America.
Florida is an exquisite vacation spot for solo feminine vacationers, however the ambiance varies tremendously from east to west and north to south. Like wherever, particularly for those who’re new, there are essential suggestions to remember to make the solo journey extra pleasurable, as an illustration, security habits, packing concepts, and websites extra suited to solo feminine guests.
We cowl all of the above and extra on this article, which was put collectively by a solo feminine traveler who sailed your complete jap coast, lived on the western coast, and explored locations in between.
Right here’s the whole lot you should know with a purpose to plan a tremendous solo journey to Florida:
Locations to Go to
1. Freshwater springs
Florida has the world’s largest focus of freshwater springs. Isn’t that incredible?! Whilst you’re out in nature, may as effectively go tent-camping too. There are many campsites, together with one at Ocala Nationwide Forest. Then spend a couple of days mountain climbing, backpacking, and swimming within the springs at Juniper Springs Recreation Space and Silver Springs State Park. On the latter, there’s a one-way paddle down the historic and pristine Silver River — a shuttle will convey you again to your place to begin!
2. St. Augustine
Stroll down the cobblestone streets of America’s oldest metropolis and also you’ll quickly uncover why it’s many individuals’s favourite place. Should-sees embrace the Castillo de San Marco (the oldest masonry fort in America) and a few of Henry Flagler’s buildings, just like the Ponce de Leon Resort and Flagler Faculty.
It’s a really walkable metropolis, so you’ll want to take a stroll down Aviles Avenue (the oldest road within the nation) only for enjoyable. There may be additionally no scarcity of good bars and eating places all through city. Mixed with stunning seashores, neat museums, and enjoyable excursions, you’ll shortly lose your self on this traditionally vital American metropolis.
3. The world close to Port Saint Lucie
For those who’re searching for small-town vibes, swing via Fort Pierce, Jensen Seashore, and Stuart. Fort Pierce has a tremendous fishing jetty, Jensen Seashore presents a spectacular view from the lighthouse, and Stuart has a quaint downtown. The individuals in every place are so pleasant, the eating places serve scrumptious meals (undoubtedly go to Seashore Bowls in Fort Pierce), and the seashores are spectacular. There’s no scarcity of issues to do, together with getting out on the water with jet ski leases, boat leases, and wildlife excursions, which search for dolphins and manatees.
Miami is aptly generally known as “southern Manhattan” and “the capital of Latin America.” You’ll be immersed in thrilling nightlife and scrumptious meals from as many nations as you’ll be able to think about on this metropolis with limitless power. There’s a thriving artwork scene right here (you’ll be able to’t miss the Artwork Deco Tour, or the cool worldwide works on the Artwork Basel present in December).
For those who like the outside, there’s the South Pointe Park, Miami Seashore Botanical Gardens, and well-known South Seashore. Store til you drop, eat your manner alongside Ocean Drive, take pleasure in a present, see well-known monuments, and take a stroll alongside the boardwalk. You received’t run out of issues to do!
5. Florida Keys
The Keys are an incredible journey. Even if you’re new to solo touring, this island chain is accessible, thrilling, enriching, and simply plain beautiful. Every key presents one thing solely completely different, so it’s price it to take every week to discover all of them. From north to south, you’ll be able to drive, bike, or take a bus to the one Caribbean islands accessible by street, and right here’s a little bit of what you’ll be able to count on from every one.
Key Largo is the place you’ll discover peaceable seashores, stunning walks via nature, and unimaginable snorkeling alternatives. Subsequent up is Islamorada, an artsy village with its personal electrical car transportation, enjoyable eating places, and historic islands. After that you simply’ll be in Marathon, the place you’ll be able to check your expertise (or be taught a brand new one) at a cable park and bike throughout the Seven Mile Bridge.
Slightly additional south, you’ll cease at Huge Pine. This little secret is residence to a novel species of deer and is correct close to the beautiful Bahia Honda State Park. Lastly, you’ll find yourself in Key West, well-known for its fascinating historical past, in addition to sundown cruises, water-based excursions and excursions, quirky bars, superb museums, and exquisite accommodations.
Are you hooked? Right here’s some hyperlinks that will help you plan your trip:
6. Everglades Nationwide Park
For those who love nature, the Everglades received’t disappoint. (Simply be ready for mosquitoes!) The Everglades are a grassy marsh and slow-moving river with mangroves and different water-based vegetation. Maintain an eye fixed out for endangered species (just like the Florida panther and leatherback turtle), birds (e.g., the roseate spoonbill and nice egret), and vegetation you received’t discover wherever else.
There may be lots else to do, although, in addition to search for wildlife: you’ll be able to hike, boat, fish, camp, kayak, or go on guided excursions.
7. Fort Myers and Sanibel and Captiva Islands
Assume white, sandy seashores, unimaginable sunsets, and chirping birds, in addition to wildlife refuges and state parks. Lovely waters additionally make Fort Myers a stunning place to learn to sail! There’s a lot to discover by water right here, each within the ocean and amid the mangroves. For those who go to the seashore, be ready to see numerous shells (you’ll be able to even go on a shelling tour). You’ll truly discover the biggest number of sea shells right here in all of North America.
8. Crystal River
If the identify doesn’t already give it away, the water is crystal-clear! It’s because the river is fed by freshwater springs. It makes for an exquisite pure sanctuary for manatees — you’ll be able to even swim, kayak, or paddleboard with them!
For those who’re not feeling like getting within the water, you’ll be able to try the charming and distinctive city, conveniently known as Crystal River as effectively. There are many artwork galleries, state parks, museums, seashores, and wildlife refuges to uncover.
This panhandle metropolis is thought for its top-ranked seashores with sugary sand and crystal-clear waters, good for recognizing dolphins on a cruise.
However there’s a load of historical past and issues to do right here too. Undoubtedly take a tour via the Civil Struggle–period Fort Pickens. You will get a style of colonial life on the Historic Pensacola Village.
Alongside the waterfront is the Maritime Heritage Path, the place you’ll be able to recap town’s delivery historical past. To not point out, artwork is in every single place, and the eating scene is a real deal with for the style buds.
Easy methods to Get Round
Fly: Truly, flying is a comparatively common choice in Florida, as a result of there are such a lot of air tour corporations, and journey by aircraft is typically the one solution to go to locations just like the Dry Tortugas. There are over 100 airports within the state, together with a number of within the Keys, and most small cities have one. Except you’re making an attempt to get from Jacksonville within the north to Key West within the south — and particularly for those who’re touring on a funds —there are higher choices.
Trains: You will get to Florida by prepare, nevertheless it’s not the easiest way to discover the state, as Amtrak primarily solely operates on the jap coast.
Buses: There may be an in depth bus community in Florida, even bus excursions to common locations just like the Everglades. However creating an itinerary round a bus schedule is perhaps extra trouble than it’s price.
Rental automotive: Essentially the most splendid solution to discover Florida is by automotive. You’ll have the liberty to remain in a metropolis so long as you’d like, or you’ll be able to discover a little bit extra off the overwhelmed path. It’s solely eight hours from Jacksonville to Key West. Cut up that up into two-hour drives and you’ll cowl your complete jap coast in 4 days.
Rideshares: Each Uber and Lyft function in Florida, and now Freebee (a free electrical car transportation service) is in Islamorada and opening up in varied components of south Florida.
Boat: Florida is surrounded by water and comprises canals, rivers, and lakes. It’s very attainable to sail across the complete peninsula and see the entire coast whereas taking day journeys additional inland. Some components of Florida, like reefs and islands, are solely accessible by boat. Many coastal cities and cities supply boat or jet-ski leases, and for those who’ve by no means pushed a ship earlier than, the workers will transient you on easy methods to safely function a vessel.
Ferry: Journey through ferry is a very enjoyable solution to go to islands, however you can too hop from metropolis to metropolis, for instance, on the St. John’s River Ferry and the Key West Specific. Some enable automobiles; others are just for pedestrians.
Bike: Sure components of Florida are very biker-friendly, just like the Abroad Freeway within the Florida Keys. Many cities supply bike leases, and biking is a well-liked solution to discover cities and benefit from the contemporary air.
Stroll: Sure locations are extra walkable than others, relying how far you’d wish to go. For those who decide lodging which might be extra centrally situated, you’ll doubtless have a straightforward time strolling to a espresso store or testing a close-by park or museum.
Easy methods to Meet Others Whereas Touring Solo in Florida
Actions: For those who go on an tour or tour, you’ll undoubtedly meet different vacationers within the group, and chances are high you’ll have comparable pursuits. Relying on what all people’s plans are, you possibly can recommend a picnic at a close-by seashore or happening a hike collectively.
Cafés and bars: Even the individual behind the counter can change into your good friend! Inform them you’re visiting and ask if they’ve any suggestions for the realm. Possibly see when their subsequent time without work is and for those who can discover collectively.
Accommodations, Airbnbs, and hostels: Many lodging embrace complimentary breakfast, supply a lounge, or have a really pleasant host. For those who don’t meet anyone there, although, you’ll be able to ask if there are any upcoming occasions like a film evening or free yoga class. Allow them to know you’re searching for different vacationers who may wish to discover the realm with you.
Speak to individuals: If you’re out and about, individuals will see that you’re alone. Be trustworthy and allow them to know that you simply’re touring solo. They could invite you to dinner with them or comply with spend the remainder of the day with you. Or, on the very least, you’ll be able to chat for a couple of minutes and get to know them and their plans, after which be in your manner.
Easy methods to Keep Protected Whereas Touring Solo in Florida
Florida has drastically improved its security ranking through the years, however crime charges are nonetheless a little bit increased than the nationwide common. Most contain theft and theft of property, like automobiles. However crime just isn’t the one factor you need to fear about. There are different components to remember, like wildlife and pure disasters. Listed below are some security precautions:
- Inclement climate:
- Even when it’s not hurricane season, excessive winds and flooding may end up in downed timber, energy outages, and impassable roads. It’s a good suggestion to at all times regulate the climate forecast.
- Sinkholes can happen after heavy rainstorms or droughts, particularly within the a part of Florida nicknamed “sinkhole alley.”
- Excursions and harmful wildlife:
- There are many alternatives to get out on the water, the place accidents can occur. It’s a good suggestion to have a snorkel buddy and to put on a life jacket.
- Florida is residence to venomous snakes and frogs, saltwater crocodiles, and freshwater alligators (and vice versa), hearth coral, Portuguese man of conflict, sharks, spiders, and all types of different creatures. Some are aggressive, others hurt passively, and others are defensive. Your tour information will doubtless warn you of probably harmful creatures once you’re on, say, a mangrove kayak tour, however at all times pay attention to your pure environment.
- Florida has many state and nationwide parks the place the wildlife are protected and you might be in their territory. All the time obey wildlife indicators and maintain an eye fixed out on the bottom and above your head.
- Keep away from unhealthy neighborhoods.
- For those who’re going out at evening, let any person know the place you’re going and once you count on to be again (and verify in with them commonly).
- Belief your intestine.
- Regulate your belongings and don’t let your drink out of your sight.
- Reasonable your alcohol consumption, particularly for those who’re touring solo.
- All the time verify the license plate tag of the driving force.
- Pay attention to your environment and don’t stroll residence alone at evening, particularly with headphones or earphones on.
- Carry a noise-making machine.
- Put money into anti-theft baggage and by no means belief fellow vacationers together with your belongings.
- Make a copy or an image of your passport in a separate place.
- Carry some smaller payments that you may simply and shortly half with whereas nonetheless saving the majority of your cash.
- Get traveler’s insurance coverage.
What to Pack
Florida is sort of at all times sunny, therefore the nickname: “the Sunshine State.” It doesn’t matter what time of 12 months you go, you’ll wish to pack a swimsuit, a hat, sun shades, sunscreen, water, a seashore blanket, and a pair of sandals.
Florida nonetheless has its seasons although, so right here’s a extra detailed record of what to pack relying on once you go:
Fall: September, October, November
If it’s La Niña, you’ll doubtless have hurricanes within the fall. In any other case, it’ll be barely milder temperatures and reasonable wind situations. The water will nonetheless be pleasantly heat. It’s a good suggestion to convey a light-weight sweater for the evenings, as a result of when the solar goes down, the breeze can get a little bit chilly.
Winter: December, January, February
These are common months to go to Florida, as a result of many snowbirds head south for the season, nevertheless it’s actually not probably the most nice climate on a regular basis. Florida is infamous for nor’easters, which might convey temperatures down as little as the 40s in some locations. Alongside together with your seashore apparel, it’s a good suggestion to pack a hat and scarf, a heat jacket, and even some pants and socks!
Spring: March, April, Could
Principally, you’ll be able to see a little bit bit of each type of climate throughout this time of 12 months. The rainstorms have a tendency to choose up and the climate can nonetheless be a little bit brisk. Humidity might be on the rise. Pack layers and produce a rain jacket.
Summer time: June, July, August
Summer time is unquestionably the most well liked and most humid time of 12 months, and if it’s El Niño, you’ll doubtless have hurricanes. It’s, nonetheless, one of many finest instances to go to as a result of the crowds are smaller and the climate is far more constant. You’ll wish to convey swimsuits, cover-ups, ethereal garments, hats, sun shades, and many sunscreen.
The place to Discover the Finest Meals
- Seafood: Do your very best to catch your individual meal! There are such a lot of fishing alternatives from land and sea that it’s solely attainable to take action. Some excursions will even fillet your catch for you, and plenty of lodging may have a spot so that you can grill. But when it simply doesn’t work out, Florida has some superior contemporary seafood markets and eating places that embrace the market catch on the menu.
- Grocery shops: Fingers-down, the finest ready meals you’ll discover in Florida are the sub sandwiches on the grocery retailer known as Publix, higher generally known as Pub Subs. They’re loaded with no matter toppings you need, on a big number of bread choices (or bread options). For those who don’t desire a sub, you’ll be able to select any of the ready meals or go to the salad bar. Better part is, you will get a meal and a half for lower than $10.
- Markets: You probably have the means to prepare dinner your individual meals, go to a farmers market! On the very least, you’ll find some scrumptious jams or baked items, which might make for an ideal brunch beneath a tree.
- Gap-in-the-wall eating places: Ask a random (however friendly-looking) individual on the road about their favourite restaurant, after which get the preferred merchandise on the menu.
- Smoothie and juice bars: Yow will discover some superb health-food joints that make real-fruit gadgets. Particularly when it’s sizzling exterior, you’ll need one thing mild, cool, and refreshing. Even smaller cities have their very own small companies that might be blissful to serve you.
- Gratuity: It’s customary to depart a tip, however generally one is already included in your verify. All the time be sure earlier than you allow a tip to see if it’s already been added to your invoice.
Lengthy-Time period Dwelling and Working in Florida
Whilst you may assume that Florida has solely a seasonal work business, particularly within the service and leisure departments, assume once more. In truth, work may be discovered year-round. It’s true that snowbirds flock through the wintry months, however full-timers at all times come out of hibernation in the summertime. And March is at all times busy, as a result of many schools let loose for spring break. Right here’s the place you’ll be able to simply get some work:
- Service business: cafés, eating places, bars, grocery shops, public transportation, accommodations, marinas
- Leisure: boat tour corporations, tour corporations, park providers
You probably have a particular talent or certification, like yoga, therapeutic massage remedy, or a captain’s license, you’ll be able to simply discover companies that can rent you as a contractor.
These are simply among the prime suggestions for a solo feminine traveler in Florida. As you’ll be able to see, it’s an exquisite and enjoyable place to strike out by yourself! If, nonetheless, you find yourself doing a few of what we instructed, you’ll doubtless meet numerous new mates and make unimaginable recollections (try easy methods to take spectacular solo selfies right here!).
For those who’re nonetheless on the fence about touring alone as a lady, that’s completely comprehensible. However there’s a lot potential simply ready so that you can uncover. Do you actually wish to let concern of the unknown and the “what ifs” maintain you again? If not, then undoubtedly try our complete information to fearless solo feminine journey, the place you’ll be able to study budgeting, solo journey myths and information, and placing your finest foot ahead once you return to your day-to-day life.
What do you say… are you in?!