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Saturday, November 26, 2022

The 10 Best Weekend Getaways in Florida (& Over 60 Activities!)

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Sandy, sweeping seashores. Previous, haunted cities with a number of ghost tales. Heaps & a number of seafood. Florida is nicknamed the Sunshine State, with a mean of 237 sunny days a 12 months. It’s really the land of 1,000,000 sandy seashores, theme parks, and a complete lot of issues to do. And it’s among the finest locations for a mini-vacation with so many really distinctive weekend getaways in Florida!

As somebody who grew up going to Florida virtually yearly, I’ve spent many a lazy hour within the Sunshine State traversing seashores, lakes, swamps, and vacationer points of interest that fall below the department of a sure type of Florida-flavored kitsch.

I’ve collected the ten greatest weekend getaways in Florida, whether or not you wish to sit on the seaside, go on adventures, discover its historical past and listen to ghost tales, or see some drag exhibits and go to the homosexual seaside (yeah, Florida, I stated homosexual).

Private beach in Key West, Florida
Palms swaying within the breeze, sandy seashores, blue water… you’ve arrived!

The ten Greatest Weekend Getaways in Florida

Solely have a weekend away? There may be lots that may be completed within the sunny state of Florida! Beneath are ten wonderful weekend getaways in Florida, whether or not you’re searching for some seaside rest or some extra adventurous choices.

I’ve included an inventory of issues to do, the place to eat and drink, and the place to remain for the weekend in every metropolis, so that you’ll undoubtedly have an excellent head begin in your planning. So let’s get to it!

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lake eola orlando florida
Exterior the theme parks, Orlando is each lovely and thrilling! (Photograph Credit score)

Orlando, Florida: Am Journey Lover’s Getaway

Orlando, Florida, you could have heard of it. The house of Common, Disney World, and a thousand vacationer traps? However beneath all of the glitz and glamour of the foremost theme parks and miniature golf programs, there’s really an thrilling, cultured metropolis ready to be explored.

Orlando, initially named the not-so-catchy “Jernigan” (sorry to any Jernigans on the market), was as soon as the citrus hub of the world till a deep freeze within the 1800s brought on farmers to maneuver their crops farther south.

The “Metropolis Stunning” as it’s nicknamed has greater than 100 lakes, and in 2019 welcomed a record-breaking 75 million guests. Orlando is one poppin’ place.

What To Do in Orlando

Simply since you’re visiting Orlando, doesn’t imply you’ll be able to’t keep away from the everyday experiences, and the crowds, if the place to look. Listed below are among the greatest issues to do in Orlando exterior the theme parks:

  • Scenic Boat Tour of Winter Park Florida – I’ve visited Orlando many occasions and I’ve to say this is likely one of the coolest experiences I’ve had right here. Positioned within the gorgeous (and tremendous swanky) Winter Park neighborhood, the hour-long scenic boat tour takes you throughout seven linked lakes, via small canals with loads of wildlife, and previous among the greatest and oldest mansions you’ll ever see – from the water that’s. The boat drivers are full of knowledge and horrible puns, so you’re in for an excellent time!
  • Night time Glow Paddleboarding – Bear in mind all these lakes I discussed Orlando having? Properly, the easiest way to expertise them is with Night time Glow Paddleboarding by Epic Paddle Adventures. Even when you’ve by no means completed standup paddleboarding earlier than, the extraordinarily pleasant and enjoyable workforce may have you up very quickly to discover the lake. The most effective half is, because the solar goes down the paddleboards gentle up (which you’ll change the colour) and the workers brings a cooler with beer or White Claws and even performs occasion music (and takes requests!). It is a fabulous technique to spend a night, and the workers really makes it one thing to put in writing residence about.
  • Morse Museum of American Artwork – The Morse Museum has one factor on its thoughts – the world’s most complete assortment of works by Louis Consolation Tiffany objects. Everyone knows Tiffany lamps, and there are many distinctive ones right here, however in addition to lamps there are Artwork Nouveau vases, jewellery, and even an elaborate chapel inside created for the Chicago World’s Honest in 1893. The temper right here is dim and enjoyable, and you probably have a watch for magnificence, you’ll undoubtedly be at residence on this creative paradise.

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The place to Eat & Drink in Orlando

  • Orlando Milkhouse – I do know what you’re considering – you’re lactose illiberal – fortunate for you Milkhouse is de facto named after the “milk district” during which it’s situated. Whereas yow will discover dairy treats like native ice cream firm Kelly’s Do-it-yourself Ice Cream right here, that is the place to get an extremely crafted cocktail and a few killer meals from Cicchetti Kitchen situated inside. The menu contains objects like handmade Foccacia with ricotta, some killer caramelized Brussel sprouts, in addition to their perfectly-cooked Bacaro burger with fonitna cheese, Dijon mustard, Arugula, B+B zucchini pickles, on a Martin’s Potato roll. Seize a craft Foxtail Espresso Martini to get you each alert and relaxed.
  • Ivanhoe Park Brewing Co. – This brewery sits proper on Lake Ivanhoe, which was as soon as the house to an early 1900s amusement park referred to as Joyland. Ivanhoe Park Brewing Firm pays homage to the world’s enjoyable heritage, with beers just like the Joyland IPA to the Toboggan Blonde Ale named after the water slides that was on the lake. Unsure what to get? Get a flight to attempt samples of their beers and e-book a personal tour to listen to extra concerning the historical past and the way their beer is made!
  • The Hammered Lamb – Because the identify suggests, the Hammered Lamb is a good place to drink! Additionally situated throughout the way in which from Lake Ivanhoe, this out of doors (and coated) bar and restaurant sits subsequent to the practice tracks. And each time a practice goes by which means one factor… practice pictures! Sure, of their quest to get you somewhat tipsy pictures are served each time a practice passes. To not point out their meals is sort of scrumptious – hummus of the day with pita and plenty of veggies, spicy wings, stacked nachos, and crispy lamb quesadillas. Choo choo!
  • East Finish Market – East Finish Market is a culinary meals hub, the place artistic cooks use native components to make one-of-a-kind meals experiences. Strolling into this place is a bit overwhelming – so many various smells and meals choices! Winter Park Biscuit Firm isn’t simply biscuits, however biscuits & gravy, hen sandwiches, and burgers… And it’s all vegan! Deceptively so. Their Crispy Chik sandwich was the juiciest vegan hen sandwich I’d ever tasted. Moreover different savory meals like Domu the place you may get some critically savory ramen, try Gideon’s Bakehouse with their Gothic, witchy aesthetic and cookies which are almost a half-pound every!
swimming pool at Caribe Royale Orlando florida
The swimming pool at Caribe Royale Orlando is actually an oasis. This might be a whole trip!

The place to Keep in Orlando

Orlando has loads of lovely locations to remain, whether or not you need extra of a resort really feel or your individual personal getaway. Listed below are a few of our favorites:

  • The Caribe Royale Orlando is situated on World Middle Drive, a stone’s throw away Disney from when you plan on visiting on one in every of your days they usually even have their very own Disney transportation. The lodge itself is not too long ago renovated with giant, spacious and fashionable rooms, and loads of eating choices on-site. The crown jewel of the lodge is its giant pool space, which incorporates waterfalls and a waterslide. Whereas this lodge is just not precisely a funds lodge, it’s definitely worth the splurge for the facilities and handy location.
  • This lovely rental with a heated pool has a shiny, spacious bed room and bikes you’ll be able to borrow to discover the tremendous cute Winter Park neighborhood and is simply blocks away from Morse Museum of American Artwork.
  • For an much more budgets pleasant choice, try this colourful mid-century fashionable apartment additionally situated in Winter Park, and only a 15-minute stroll from the Scenic Boat Tour of Winter Park Florida. You actually can have all of it!

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New Smyrna Seaside: An Artwork Lover’s Getaway

New Smyrna Seaside has a complete lot of historical past – it’s the third oldest metropolis in Florida behind St. Augustine and Pensacola. Scottish doctor Dr. Andrew Turnbull established New Smyrna in 1768, although the land was already inhabited by the Seminole Tribe. Turnbull’s spouse was from the Ottoman (Turkey as we speak) metropolis of Smyrna, from which he determined to call the town New Smyrna.

In the present day new Smyrna is called an artists’ hub, residence to the Atlantic Middle for the Arts in addition to The Hub on Canal, a community-based arts middle the place native artists train and promote their works. Right here yow will discover ocean-inspired paintings (or not!), in every kind of mediums by individuals who flock to this city for artistic inspiration.

New Smyrna Seaside can also be identified for its unimaginable browsing, ranked by Surfer Journal because the quantity 5 greatest surf city. With waves virtually each week of the 12 months, New Smyrna is a scorching spot for surfers and surf tradition, despite the fact that New Smyrna is called the “shark capital of the world” because of the close by inlet. So perhaps stick extra to artwork, and depart the browsing to the professionals!

What To Do in New Smyrna Seaside

There may be loads of artwork, historical past, and plenty of native appeal to find in New Smyrna Seaside! A number of of one of the best actions are:

  • Marine Discovery Middle Boat Tour – Take a 2-hour Dolphin Discovery boat tour on North America’s most biologically various estuary, with over 4000 species that decision this space residence. You’ll see nice egrets nesting, completely different species of mangrove timber, and naturally, loads of dolphins. I’ve by no means seen so many dolphins at one time as I did on this cruise, them leaping and enjoying each by the boat and within the distance. In case you want your lovely dolphin repair, this can be one of the best place to see them!
  • Smyrna Dunes Park– This 184-acre inlet park supplies two miles of boardwalks the place you’ll be able to see gopher tortoises nesting inside the lush dune foliage. The boardwalk additionally has loads of overlooks of the attractive Atlantic Ocean, Indian River, and Ponce de Leon Inlet. It is a excellent spot for a stroll, and to move to the seaside to stroll alongside the jetty and gander on the Ponce de Leon lighthouse throughout the inlet.
  • Discover the Canal Road Historic District – What was a literal canal 250 years in the past, which was used to ship items like can sugar and indigo from the mainland to the Indian River, Canal road as we speak continues to be the cultural hub of commerce and artwork. Right here yow will discover outlets like The Gallery which sells gourmand balsamic vinegar (I like to recommend the pomegranate sort!), in addition to The Hub on Canal, which is a community-supported artwork house the place native artists promote their wares. They do month-to-month occasions as effectively just like the Traditional Cruise Automotive Present, artwork strolls, and gallery walks. There may be all the time one thing happening!
  • Try the Historical past Museum and Previous Fort Park – New Smyrna is residence to a number of tradition and historical past, because it’s the third oldest metropolis within the state! Cease by the New Smyrna Museum of Historical past first to be taught concerning the unique Native People, the Spanish’s arrival, how indigo dye grew to become a money crop for the town, and its completely tubular browsing scene. Afterward, head throughout the road from the museum is Previous Fort Park, which is open and free so that you can stroll throughout the mysterious ruins. Nobody is aware of what this sprawling basis was initially holding up: was it a colonial church? Dr. Turnbull’s mansion? A web site for developing ships or the unique Castillo de San Marcos? Nobody is aware of!
  • Stroll across the Previous Sugar Mills Ruins – Three miles away from the museum and Previous Fort Park are the Previous Sugar Mills Ruins, which was initially the Cruger-de Peyster sugar mill. Within the 1830s, the US tried to forcibly push the Seminole Tribe off their very own land, so that they burnt down the Spanish colonizer’s mill in retaliation. In the present day this free park is hidden amongst palm timber containing high-sweeping arches and rusted metallic vats, and is a good place to be taught concerning the battle of the unique inhabitants of the land and those that intruded. Remember the park entrance is just not effectively marked – go to 600 Mission Drive, New Smyrna Seaside, FL and enter the small street that goes into the forest.

The place to Eat & Drink in New Smyrna Seaside

A treehouse, a fairy backyard, and a marina… all with scrumptious meals! New Smyrna has some glorious meals in some sudden places, let’s dig in!

  • Norwood’s Eastery & Bar Treehouse – Norwood’s is the type of place that makes you’re feeling like a child once more, as a result of you’ll be able to really eat dinner in an enormous treehouse with twinkling lights! Sit out on the second-story patio nestled amongst the timber and eat tremendous contemporary seafood (that is Florida in spite of everything), like coconut shrimp as an appetizer and the Admiral’s Platter for dinner, with a 50oz lobster tail, grilled Mahi, and broiled sea scallops and shrimp. Order an All Night time Lengthy to drink, with bourbon, orange, lemon, bitters, and pinot noir float. You gained’t be leaving hungry right here!
  • Third Wave Cafe and Wine Bar – Eat exterior on the Third Wave Cafe and Wine Bar is like stepping right into a backyard paradise, with palms, string lights, and loads of evergreen vegetation and pergolas to make you’re feeling cozy and magical. To begin, order the Wagyu Quick Rib Hummus, with hummus they make from scratch, over-roasted boneless Wagyu brief rib, toasted Pita, Za’atar concord herbs, and EVOO, or the Shrimp Gambas (Spanish type shrimp) with Creole butter sauteed, wild-caught American shrimp, garlic, chilies, Calabrian oil, and crisp baguette. For a fresher-than-fresh entree, get the Sensible Catch, a Cooks catch with blackened honey pecan-crusted, shrimp, whiskey butter cream sauce, chef’s vegetable, and Yukon mash potatoes. Every little thing right here is beautiful in taste and preparation!
  • Outriggers Tiki Bar and Grille – For maybe one of the best place to get brunch in New Smyrna, try the Outriggers Tiki Bar and Grille. Located proper alongside the marina, watch boats go by as you dig into some Hen & Waffles with cinnamon butter, sausage gravy, and bacon amaretto sauce, or the Crab & Lobster Cake Sandwich, with Florida spiny lobster, crispy Panko fried lump crab, chipotle lime sauce on a brioche bun.
Smyrna Dunes Park beach and jetty
You possibly can by no means go incorrect with being near the ocean.

The place to remain in New Smyrna Seaside

When on the seaside, you wish to keep close to the seaside! Listed below are some nice seaside choices on a funds:

  • This tremendous beachy cottage is actually simply steps away from the seaside and priced good! With a kitchenette and single bed room and loo, you’ll have all the pieces it’s essential to discover the tremendous lovely New Smyrna and have sand between your toes very quickly!
  • The Sea Vista Motel has a classic appeal and is true on the water, so you may get to the seaside in a jiffy! There’s additionally a pool and a linked Tiki bar, so it’s a fantastic place to seize a drink and watch the waves roll.

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driftwood trees at boneyard beach in jacksonville florida-Blog Photo-2
The large driftwood timber at Boneyard Seaside are otherworldly!

Jacksonville: A Nature Lover’s Getaway

Jacksonville is the biggest metropolis by landmass within the continental US, coming in at a whopping 840 sq. miles! With a lot space you’ll be able to wager there are many adventures available – and it’s among the finest weekend getaways in Florida particularly by way of getting in contact with nature.

With such a big landmass it additionally is sensible they’ve the biggest city park system within the nation, which is 4 occasions the scale of Manhattan at 80,000 acres. You’ve bought a whole lot of exploring to do!

Mainly, if you wish to get exterior and discover one of the best of Florida’s natural world, “Jax” is the place to go to, with a mean of 270 sunny days a 12 months and 22 miles of seashores.

What To Do in Jacksonville

Put in your bathing go well with, slather up in sunscreen, and prepare to do some exploring. We’ve yoga, kayaking, and a “boneyard” seaside!

  • Dawn Yoga with MBody Yoga I do know, I do know, waking up earlier than the dawn could not sound like probably the most enjoyable exercise, but it surely’s a good way to start your morning on a weekend getaway in Florida. As you stretch with steering out of your teacher on Neptune Seaside, your complete physique will awaken because the solar slowly rises from behind the Atlantic Ocean. Actually nothing is as serene as a seaside dawn, the nice and cozy salty air coming into your lungs as you’re feeling your muscular tissues launch.
  • Boneyard Seaside – Positioned alongside a 3-mile stretch of the Nassau Sound is Boneyard Seaside at Large Talbot Island State Park. These “bones” aren’t actually bones in any respect – however large driftwood timber that cowl the seaside like an elephant graveyard. The solar has bleached these large “bones” whereas the wind and sand has made them easy, and you may stroll alongside these gnarly skeletons and even climb them. These lifeless timber defend from additional erosion of the flora behind the seaside and make a fantastic place for a considerably morbid and eccentric stroll.
  • Strive Stand Up Paddleboarding within the ocean – Even you probably have by no means SUPed earlier than, Jacksonville Surf and Paddle will take excellent care of you as you placed on a wetsuit, paddle previous the waves, and check out your hand on standing and paddling in your SUP! Paddling on the ocean is each thrilling and serene, attending to go farther offshore than you usually would swimming. Even when you fall, you’ll splash gently into the ocean and climb again on. Their 90-minute newbie courses are the right spot to get your toes moist (actually) and chances are you’ll discover you’re hooked on paddleboarding earlier than it!
  • Take an eco kayaking tour – If you wish to be taught extra about Jacksonville’s expansive pure areas, take an eco-tour with Kayak Amelia like their 3-hour Salt Marsh Eco Tour from Ft. George Boat Ramp. Paddle via the Fort George/Simpson Creek estuary via the salt marshes whilst you be taught concerning the Timucua Tribe who had been indigenous to this land, see spitting oysters among the many Spartina grass (actually!) and loads of birds like osprey, and even cease on a sandbar for home made cookies (that’s what retains coming again, they are saying!). Our tour information that day was a former instructor named Buddy, and you may inform Kayak Amelia has a real love of instructing and the setting.
North Beach Fish Camp jacksonville florida fish plate
The Roast Cod Filet drenched in butter from North Seaside Fish Camp.

The place to Eat & Drink in Jacksonville

From the ocean to your mouth, Jacksonville has loads of contemporary fish eats with a complete lot of taste! The next eating places are situated in Neptune Seaside, a fantastic place to have a chew then stroll alongside the seaside.

  • North Seaside Fish Camp – North Seaside Fish Camp is a nautical-themed restaurant, with, as you guessed, fish! For starters, you’ll be able to’t go incorrect with the Crispy Calamari with Pecorino cheese & spicy tomato sauce or, when you’re feeling adventurous, the Fried Gator Tail with Cowgill’s Datil pepper aioli (hey, that is Florida in spite of everything). The Roast Cod Filet with Brown Butter, Garlic & Lemon, Parsley Potatoes and Seasonal Greens is an ideal lighter choice, too!
  • Southern Grounds – For a morning pick-me-up (after yoga, no much less), head to Southern Grounds for some scrumptious and powerful espresso and a few pancakes, a bagel sandwich, and even loaded avocado toast. This place is busy within the morning, so seize some eats and a desk on the patio exterior.
  • Sliders Oyster Bar – This pink flamingo-themed, ultra-retro and fashionable stylish beachside joint could also be one of the best place to get Oysters in Jacksonville within the coolest setting. Seize a desk or picnic desk with buddies on the patio and prepare to dig into some contemporary seafood delivered day by day! The principle occasion after all are the Oysters steamed or uncooked, and specialty oysters just like the Rockefeller (spinach, parmesan, provolone, and breadcrumbs) and on line casino (with bacon and a three-cheese combine), amongst others. For one thing not oysters, attempt their shrimp nachos with pico and queso, and get the Hobbs Rum Punch with two completely different sorts of rum with banana, orange, pineapple, and grenadine!

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The place to Keep in Jacksonville

Jacksonville has 22 miles of seashores, so it’s undoubtedly the spot to e-book a spot on the water! A few choices are:

  • Whereas the One Ocean Resort & Spa is definietly on the pricier aspect, when you’re searching for a spot within the coronary heart of Neptune Seaside and wish some swanky facilities like a spa, One Ocean Resort & Spa is the place to deal with your self. Positioned proper on the seaside and steps away from MBody Yoga and the eating places talked about above, you’ll be able to relax of their pool and soak up all of the beachy, calming ambiance of this attractive resort.
  • This beachside house is barely a block away from Jackson Seaside and a brief stroll to the Jackson Seaside Pier and loads of native seaside bars. This one-bedroom ground-floor house has an out of doors patio for lounging, a kitchenette, and maybe the right location!
sanibel lighthouse sanibel island florida
The lighthouse is the long-lasting picture of Sanibel! (Photograph Credit score)

Sanibel Island: A Leisure Lover’s Getaway

Sanibel Island is one in every of my favourite locations on the earth. I’ve been coming right here since I used to be a child with my prolonged household, and I by no means uninterested in the miles of shelly seashores, the quaint domestically owned companies, and the Bubble Bread. Mmmmm. Extra on that in a minute.

Sanibel Island, and the linked Captiva Island, is situated off the coast of Fort Meyers on the Gulf of Mexico, and this little island is located in such a method (East to West) that it’s the prime spot for shelling. Among the rarest shells on the earth are discovered right here, just like the well-known Junonia, and there’s even a reputation for individuals bending over to choose up shells: the “Sanibel Stoop”.

Sanibel Island seems like a real place to calm down – no huge chain shops or eating places however fairly native outlets, shelling cruises, and a complete lot of “Sanibel Stooping”.

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shells on sanibel island florida
Shelling and doing the “Sanibel Stoop” is the factor to do on these shelly, attractive seashores. (Photograph Credit score)

Issues to do on Sanibel Island

Sanibel Island is the right place to do some actions – or not! Nobody will blame you for simply shelling all day on the seaside or watching one in every of their well-known sunsets. However when you do wish to get out and about, listed below are a few of my favourite actions:

  • Take a Shelling Cruise – If Sanibel Island isn’t quiet and distant sufficient for you, e-book a Half Day Cruise to Southern Cayo Costa. This journey is roughly 3 hours and leaves from Captiva Island and takes you to Cayo Costa State Park, which is simply north of Captiva. On this part of the island, there are not any facilities – all you get is the seaside, sand, and loads of shells! Right here you’ll discover every kind of shells like tulips, olives, scallops, and perhaps when you’re actually fortunate, the elusive Junonia. Simply bear in mind to not acquire any shells with dwelling creatures in them – that’s their residence!
  • Benefit from the wildlife at a Wildlife Refuge – The J.N. “Ding” Darling Nationwide Wildlife Refuge is a part of the world’s largest undeveloped mangrove inhabitants and is legendary for its spectacular migratory birds that come right here. Take a drive via this 6400-acre protect, with loads of locations to park and trails to discover. You possibly can even climb many towers to face and chook from!
  • Bike across the Island – With over 25 miles of biking trails, the easiest way to discover Sanibel Island is by bike. The island is barely about 12 miles throughout and three large, so it’s simple to see the seashores, wildlife, and the palms swaying above as you traverse it. There are many locations to lease bikes, and most VRBOs and accommodations may have ones you’ll be able to borrow. Cease by Periwinkle Place as you bike too, to search out every kind of enjoyable outlets to discover.
orange crunch cake from the bubble room sanibel isalnd
The Orange Crunch Cake from the Bubble Room is extremely addictive. It’s exhausting to solely eat it as soon as in your journey! (Photograph Credit score: Dad)

The place to Eat & Drink on Sanibel Island

Since Sanibel Island doesn’t have any chain eating places (okay, okay, they’ve one Dairy Queen), you’ll discover loads of native locations, a few of that are even world-famous!

  • The Bubble Room – You possibly can’t point out Sanibel Island with out asking in the event that they’ve been to the Bubble Room (or perhaps that’s simply me). The Bubble Room, really situated on Captiva Island, is an ultra-themed restaurant stuffed with kitsch and classic memorabilia from the 30s and 40s. The partitions are lined with outdated film stills, classic toys are in each nook and cranny, and there are even toy trains that run alongside the ceiling from room to room. The actual star of the Bubble Room is its Bubble Bread, made with a number of sorts of cheese on Italian bread which comes with each entree (the recipe is carefully guarded after all). Their different star is their large slices of cake, like their Orange Crunch cake, a yellow cake layered with almond brown sugar, and coated in orange cream cheese icing. You possibly can even come only for dessert!
  • The Island Cow – This informal restaurant touts “udderly nice meals”, which is true! This can be one of the best place in all of Sanibel to get brunch, they usually serve your desk a basket of complimentary home made muffins as starters, which is one thing I really feel very keen about. For breakfast, attempt their Hash Brown Benedict with 2 poached eggs and Canadian bacon on waffled hash brown. What?! For lunch, have the Sesame Tuna Steak Salad – contemporary pan-seared yellowfin tuna with sesame seeds and a honey ginger glaze on a contemporary backyard salad with our home made citrus French dressing.
  • The Lighthouse Cafe – The Lighthouse Cafe’s signal says “the world’s greatest breakfast”, and I’ve to say, their french toast is one thing desires are made from. Whereas there’s nothing revolutionary about their flavors or dishes, they’re traditional breakfast meals cooked completely, the place waitresses putter round with pots of espresso prepared to offer you a refill. Get right here early and luxuriate in some rattling good breakfast.
sanibel island sunset florida
There’s something so magical a few Sanibel Island sundown, with the promise of one other day of shelling… (Photograph Credit score)

The place to Keep on Sanibel Island

Staying on Sanibel can get dear, it’s a small island and paradise in spite of everything, however listed below are some locations for a weekend getaway in Florida on a funds:

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city shot of tampa flordia
Tampa is a good metropolis to discover by the water! (Photograph Credit score: Go to Tampa Bay)

Tampa: A Metropolis Lover’s Getaway

Spanish colonizer Ponce de León first “found” Florida in 1513, although really the extinct Pohoy and Tocobaga Native American Tribes lived right here lengthy earlier than. The parable persists to at the present time that de León got here to America to search out the “Fountain of Youth”, although there isn’t a exhausting proof that that is true, and it’s extra doubtless he was solely searching for gold and land to steal.

After that, the world remained roughly untouched till it grew to become a part of the US in 1845, and in 1884 a person named Henry B. Plant constructed a railroad all the way down to Tampa with lavish accommodations alongside the way in which.

Since then, Tampa has grown into an up-scale, busy metropolis with no scarcity of leisure, aided by the cigar trade that Vicente Martinez Ybor established there within the Eighteen Eighties.

Issues to do in Tampa

Manatees, magnates, and ghosts, oh my! Tampa actually has a beneficiant mixture of old-world Florida and pure habitats for wildlife, so you may get a fantastic combine right here.

  • Go to the Property of a Railroad Tycoon Even by the late 1800s, Florida was nonetheless largely underdeveloped, so a person named Henry B. Plant linked Tampa to the remainder of Florida by railroad and constructed accommodations alongside the tracks. The one lodge of his that’s nonetheless totally standing is now the Henry B. Plant Museum, situated in downtown Tampa. The gorgeous property displays the peak of the Gilded Age in America – with its Moorish and Victorian structure and its silver minarets which have grow to be an architectural icon of Tampa. Inside, you’ll be able to see all the pieces from imported Japanese vases made within the 1800s to gold plated French chairs – this museum is a dream for anybody who appreciates superb ornament and furnishings.
  • Meet the Ghosts of Ybor Metropolis Meet two kinds of spirits on this Haunted Ybor Pub Strolling Tour as you discover 4 of the spookiest pubs in downtown Tampa. Whilst you take pleasure in drinks, the costumed tour information will inform the haunted historical past of every place. The guides are wearing corsets and tunics and appear like they only stepped off the set of a pirate film (minus the swords, after all). Haunted pub excursions are few and much in between, so be sure to go to this one whilst you’re right here, and you’ll want to try among the final remaining cigar manufacturing unit whilst you’re right here!
  • Spot The Unusual Manatee – Centuries in the past, when pirates and European explorers had been out on the ocean for months, they’d typically come residence claiming they’d seen lovely ladies within the water. In the present day, it’s thought that these sailors had been seeing manatees from a fantastic distance. Within the Eighties, an influence station in Tampa was shut down and that very same 12 months, individuals observed manatees coming in nice numbers, and the federally protected Manatee sanctuary Tampa Electrical’s Manatee Viewing Middle was born. Right here you’ll be able to watch manatees hug and play with one another within the water and be taught what the sanctuary is doing to assist their conservation.

The place to Eat & Drink in Tampa

Since Florida is so near Cuba (nearly 90-100 miles on the southernmost level of Florida) there’s loads of Cuban meals to attempt, together with meals ready by the Native American inhabitants (primarily Seminole & Miccosukee Tribes). Pair that with a world-renowned steak home and you’ve got among the finest weekend getaways in Florida.

  • Mandy’s To Go – This spot is one wonderful piece of Cuba in Tampa. Mandy’s has a really home-cooked really feel to it – the staff are actually personable too – and all of the parts are tremendous huge. Their Cuban sandwiches are all excellent (the bread is soooo fluffy) however my favourite sandwich is the Media Noche, which is a pressed sandwich with mustard, ham, pickles, & pork. I do not know what their secret is, however I’m obsessed. Because the identify suggests, the meals is to go solely, so decide up sandwiches after which go to the seaside for a enjoyable picnic!
  • Ulele – At Ulele (You-lay-lee), yow will discover meals that’s impressed by the Native Tribes of Florida. Ulele is situated on the Hillsborough River, and the Tampa Riverwalk subsequent to it’s colorfully lit up at evening. A lot of the components are sourced from across the Bay space, and the others are from small American farmers that don’t use hormones. Additionally they promote craft beer made on-site, when you’re into that type of factor. The okra fries are splendidly crunchy, with a touch of lime & salt. My favourite meal is the Gouda grouper – I by no means would suppose to pair a deliciously seasoned grouper filet with a Gouda ale béchamel however hey, I’m not a chef for a motive. Since Ulele is on the Riverwalk, it might probably get fairly standard on the weekends, so make a reservation.
  • Bern’s Steakhouse – It is a restaurant you’ll see on each ‘Better of Tampa’ record or journey information, but it surely’s there for a motive – Bern’s Steakhouse is incredible and has been round in Tampa since 1956. Strolling into this large restaurant seems like strolling right into a Victorian fortress – the partitions are a deep purple, with a stone facade on the underside half, and outdated footage in elaborate, silver frames cling on the partitions. Their meat is perfection, just like the A5 Japanese Wagyu tenderloin, which is likely one of the highest high quality beefs available on the market, however any steak you order shall be cooked expertly to your liking. Once you’re prepared for dessert, they’re served in a completely completely different room upstairs, and I like to recommend the super-rich and fudgy 12-layer chocolate cake slice. Ensure that to make a reservation on-line or over the telephone effectively upfront, and their gown code is enterprise informal to semi-formal.

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29 Issues No person Tells You About Savannah, Georgia

tampa riverwalk florida getaways
Strolling down the Tampa Riverwalk is a good way to finish any day in Tampa! (Photograph Credit score: Go to Tampa Bay)

The place to Keep in Tampa

Tamps is a good place to remain, particularly when you keep close to Ybor Metropolis or the Downtown space by the Tampa Riverwalk. Listed below are some locations in these areas:

  • This Secluded Retreat is within the coronary heart of the historic Ybor metropolis and near downtown, making it the right spot to remain throughout your journey. It’s spacious and clear with two bedrooms, so convey some buddies alongside!
  • This tremendous cute lodge room on the Florida Palace Lodge is true within the coronary heart of Downtown and provides you with some severe Magnificence & the Beast vibes. It’s additionally proper subsequent to the Tampa Riverwalk, so that you’ll have leisure out there everytime you like!
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Miami is residence to lovely seashores and delightful Artwork Deco structure. (Photograph Credit score)

Miami: A Magnificence Lover’s Getaway

Miami is thought for plenty of issues, like the fashionable and glitzy South Seaside, the world’s largest assortment of fashionable Artwork Deco buildings, and perhaps most iconically, the place the Golden Ladies stay.

Miami was initially inhabited by the Tequesta Tribe, till the Spanish claimed Florida for themselves within the 1500s, and was named after the Miami River – “Miami” which means “huge water” within the Tequesta/Miyami language. Miami got here to be generally known as the “Magic Metropolis” in fashionable occasions as a result of it went from nowheresville within the early 1900s till the Florida land growth of the Twenties made it appear to spring up by “magic”.

In the present day you’ll be able to nonetheless see relics of the growth with the fabulous Twenties-30s Artwork Deco structure, and take a look at historic neighborhoods like Little Havana, Miami’s vibrant Cuban coronary heart the place you’ll be able to eat at among the greatest eating places and puff on a cigar.

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Digital Trip to the Seaside: Take a Tropical (Digital) Journey from House

vizcaya in miami florida
The Vizcaya Museum & Gardens is like getting into Europe! (Photograph Credit score)

Issues to do in Miami

Although Miami is Florida’s second-most populous metropolis after Jacksonville, it isn’t very huge – at solely 36 sq. miles it’s simple to absorb one of the best of Miami in only a weekend. Among the greatest issues to get a style of Miami are:

  • Take the Miami South Seaside Artwork Deco Strolling Tour – As beforehand talked about, Miami is residence to the biggest assortment of Artwork Deco buildings on the earth, which is a method from the Twenties and 30s characterised by robust colours and boldly delineated geometric shapes. In different phrases, it’s what makes Miami appear like Miami! On this two-hour tour, you’ll study mob life and Hollywood glamour via the lens of structure, and even see Versace’s over-the-top mansion.
  • Discover the Vizcaya Museum & Gardens – Constructed by agricultural gear builder James Deering between 1914 and 1922, this sweeping property exemplified the European villa type with over 10 acres of formal European-inspired gardens with lilies in a sweeping pool, orchids, hidden grottos and mangroves and rather more. Contained in the Mediterranean-style residence you’ll discover vintage Italian objects and loads of ornate, gilded furnishings really giving Vizcaya the identify “Miami’s residence”.
  • Do the Little Havana Meals and Strolling Tour in Miami – An effective way to get a style (actually) of Miami is to take a meals and strolling tour of Little Havana. Little Havana is an integral a part of the heartbeat of Miami, because the metropolis is residence to many Cuban immigrants and the inhabitants is 70% Hispanic. On this 2.5-hour tour you’ll get to pattern the native delicacies, like guava pastries, hen plantain cups, and flan ice cream, and meet native artists, watch expert Cuban cigar rollers and take heed to conventional Cuban music.
terras rooftop patio with tacos and beer miami florida
Terras has a tropically overgrown rooftop restaurant & bar, excellent for nice meals and nice websites! (Photograph Credit score: @terrasmiami)

The place to Eat & Drink in Miami

In case you’re visiting Miami, you’ll be able to wager your buns you’re going to have some good Cuban meals, the flavors of that are going to bounce over your tongue like a mambo. Listed below are some locations to get nice eats:

  • El Rey de las Fritas – A Cuban Frita is a Cuban hamburger that was invented in Havana someday within the Thirties. Their Fritas are made with a floor beef patty with sautéed onions, topped with crispy shoestring fries, whereas sitting on a fluffy Cuban roll, and a “secret” constructed into the patty. This may satiate our quick meals cravings – however quick meals that’s really good and home made – so pop on this lovely diner and check out a style of Cuba.
  • Terras – Terras has the excellence of being the one rooftop bar and restaurant in Little Havana, and it’s like stepping right into a lush jungle that additionally occurs to have views of the Miami skyline. The most effective phrase to explain this place is stylish. Right here you may get tapas with domestically sourced components, just like the candy corn “cachapa” pancakes, pollo tacos, and shrimp seviche, and cocktails just like the Guavaloma made with Rosaluna mezcal, guava grapefruit syrup, grapefruit soda, and grapefruit sugar.
  • Monte’s Coconut Grove – Positioned on the marina, Monte’s Coconut Grove is the place to get contemporary seafood in a tropical setting. Step below the thatched rooves of this tiki hut setting and order some Conch Fritters which are fried in spicy batter with cocktail & tartar to start out together with some Gulf Oysters. On your entree, you’ll be able to’t beat good old style fish and chips, or step it up with the Mahi Sandwich. However truthfully of you simply ate oysters and drank mango margaritas I wouldn’t blame you both.
miami beach florida-Blog Photo-3
Even the lifeguard shacks in Miami are lovely! (Photograph Credit score)

The place to Keep in Miami

Whether or not you wish to be near little Havana below a mango tree, or proper on the seaside, Miami has choices!

  • This charming backyard cottage is tremendous cozy, cute, and magical – your very personal personal plant paradise. Positioned proper by the town middle and Little Havana, you’ll be able to discover the town after which come again to your individual secluded haven, consuming exterior below a mango tree. The within is simply as cute and colourful with a queen-sized mattress and a kitchen.
  • This tremendous fashionable and trendy one-bedroom house is situated only a 5 to 10-minute stroll to all one of the best of South Seaside. Moreover a kitchen to prepare dinner in, this constructing additionally has its personal shady pool, sure to maintain you cool on scorching afternoons!
  • For an superior funds choice, this apartment in an precise Artwork Deco constructing could also be small however you might have the seaside at your fingertips! And you may’t beat staying in a bit of historical past.

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Two Weeks in Costa Rica: The Final Costa Rica 2 Week Itinerary

A large rainbow flag flies at the 12th Street Beach, South Beach, Miami
Sure, we are saying homosexual in Florida! (Photograph Credit score)

Fort Lauderdale: A Homosexual Getaway

Although solely about 45 minutes away from Miami, Fort Lauderdale is a brilliant scorching spot for LGBTQ+ vacationers. Even their present mayor is homosexual! If you’d like some good old style homosexual enjoyable (sure, we are saying homosexual right here!) Fort Lauderdale is the place to see glorious drag, try the homosexual bars, and naturally, sandy (homosexual) seashores.

The Metropolis of Fort Lauderdale is known as for the second Seminole fort constructed to battle the Seminole Tribe in 1838, as European colonizers stole their land and drove them out. Town as we speak is nicknamed “The Venice of America”, because of the 300 miles of canals and channels that are referred to as the Intercostal Waterway.

So seize your cutest outfit, your dancing sneakers (or flip flops), and let’s discover Fort Lauderdale.

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Sebastian Road Seaside is the gayest seaside in Florida, perhaps the world! (Photograph Credit score)

Issues to do in Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale is all about enjoyable, drinks, and seaside time! If this appears like spring break, you’re not incorrect, as Fort Lauderdale was the place spring break originated in 1938! Discuss a celebration city.

  • Go to the Homosexual Seaside – Fort Lauderdale is know, as a lot of Flordia actually, for his or her seashores, they usually have 23 miles of seashores crammed into 36 sq. miles of metropolis. That’s a whole lot of seashores! Sebastian Road Seaside is called the homosexual seaside, and is a good place to individuals watch and meet different {couples} each domestically and on trip.
  • Try some homosexual historical past – Fort Lauderdale is residence to not one, however two homosexual museums. The primary is the Stonewall Museum & Archives, the place you’ll be able to be taught concerning the Stonewall Riots that grew to become the catalyst for the homosexual liberation motion. Right here you’ll be able to see images, clippings, and memorabilia from the riotd in addition to fashionable homosexual ephemera. The opposite is the World AIDS Museum and Educaiton Middle, the place you’ll be able to be taught the unhappy story of the AIDS epidemic, the pitiful authorities response, and the hope to stamp out HIV/AIDS as soon as and for all sooner or later.
  • Try the canals and channels on a sightseeing cruise – In case you’re visiting Fort Lauderdale for the primary time, chances are you’ll be curious concerning the “Venice of America”. Town has 165 miles of navigable waterways, and photographs of the town it does all appear to be floating on water! Fortunately you’ll be able to take a 90-Minute Narrated Sightseeing Cruise, the place you’ll cruise alongside the New River previous Millionaire’s Row and be taught concerning the space.

The place to Eat & Drink in Fort Lauderdale

In Fort Lauderdale, you’ll be able to maintain it homosexual all via dinner, and for drinks afterward! Not solely that, you’ll be able to have dinner and a drag present – it’s true!

  • Lips Drag Queen Present Palace, Restaurant & Bar – Dinner theatre can solely be higher when drag queens are concerned, and Lips simply does that! Wednesday via Sunday they do a special present with a special menu every day, like “Glitz & Glam” on Friday and Sunday, “Dragalicious Brunch” on Sunday with bottomless mimosas, and even a “Taboo 21+” present late Saturday nights. Discuss dinner and a present, hunty!
  • Rosie’s Bar and Grille – For a giant homosexual time in an informal environment, try Rosie’s Bar and Grille. Sit on their out of doors patio surrounded by lush foliage below colourful umbrellas and rainbow lanterns, sipping on fruity drinks like their Watermellon Basil Martini, an Orange Bubble Crush, or a Blue Wave. Foodwise, they’ve superior burgers, sandwiches, nachos, and rather more!
  • Try the Wilton Manors Homosexual Bars – Wilton Manors is the primary gayborhood of Fort Lauderdale, although technically it’s really its personal metropolis! Alongside Wilton Drive, the primary homosexual thoroughfare, you’ll discover bars like Infinity Lounge for an after-work drink, Hunters for dancing, and The Pub for wonderful drag exhibits. This strip is definitely walkable, and simply be sure to’re respectful when you’re not a queer particular person coming into a queer house!
wilton manors fort lauderdale florida pool e1654797435145
A non-public pool on my weekend getaway? Don’t thoughts if I do! (Photograph Credit score)

The place to Keep in Fort Lauderdale

Staying in Fort Lauderdale for the weekend has choices – whether or not you want the seaside inside strolling distance, or the bars of Wilton Manors!

  • This central Wilton Manors studio house is true within the coronary heart of Wilton Manors, making bar hopping/crawling simple and protected! The house is fashionable and clear, and one of the best half is your individual personal pool within the yard surrounded by palm timber and flowers.
  • For that seaside life, try this tremendous stylish house that’s proper on the scenic Intercoastal Waterway. Once you’re not watching the boats roll by out of your spacious house, you’ll be able to cool off within the pool or stroll a block to Fort Lauderdale seaside!

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38 Enchanting Issues to Do in Savannah, Georgia

st pete beach florida
St. Pete Seaside is one of the best seaside in America you say? Don’t thoughts if I do… (Photograph Credit score)

St. Petersburg: A Seaside Lover’s Getaway

St. Petersburg — or St. Pete, for brief — has a seaside for each event. With top-rated seashores stretching 35 miles alongside the Gulf of Mexico, you’ll be able to go to a special world-class seaside every single day. With vigorous city seashores — and the open-air bars, volleyball video games, and vibrant power that include — quiet, undeveloped island seashores, and all the pieces in between, you’ll wish to pack loads of sunscreen (and a boogie board) in your weekend in St. Pete. 

That’s to not say there isn’t lots extra to do when you want a break from the solar (St. Pete averages 360 days of solar per 12 months!). Cultural points of interest — just like the Salvador Dali Museum and the Chihuly Assortment — and an thrilling meals scene can punctuate your enjoyable within the solar.

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All this nature is true at your fingertips in Fort de Soto Park! (Photograph Credit score)

Issues to Do in St. Petersburg

Sandals? Verify. Sunblock? Verify. Let’s take a look at one of the best seashores and pure actions in St. Pete!

  • Hit One in every of America’s Favourite Seashores – Rated the #1 seaside within the US by Journey Advisor in 2021, St. Pete Seaside is all the pieces a seaside needs to be. White, sugar sand; unbelievable sunsets; clear, emerald water, and — after all — seaside bars. Spend the day absorbing the solar, splashing within the surf, and marveling on the simple fantastic thing about this Gulf Coast seaside. And on the finish of the day (heck, everytime you need), head to at least one or two of the open-air seaside bars — Jimmy B’s has stay music and a sprawling, beachside patio.
  • Get pleasure from Seashores and Historical past at Fort De Soto Park and Egmont Key Fort De Soto Park encompasses 5 islands and tons of shoreline within the Gulf and Tampa Bay. You possibly can hike, bike, calm down on the seashores, and even discover the historic fort — accomplished in 1900. You possibly can even take the ferry over to Egmont Key, a secluded island the place you’ll be able to hike, swim, or snorkel amongst outdated fort ruins. Take a look at you, Indiana Jones!
  • Discover an Undeveloped Island – In case you plan for a day journey, Caladesi Island State Park (which requires a ferry journey) is a quiet island, excellent for a soothing day spent swimming or bird-watching. If you wish to escape the seaside for a bit, there’s an exquisite nature path that can take you thru the guts of the island to historic ruins. This path goes to the Scharrer Homestead ruins, which is what stays of a late 1800s home, the place Henry Scharrer, a Swedish immigrant, used to stay. You can even lease a kayak on the island and kayak one of many paddling trails via the shallow, clear water.
  • See Florida Wildlife by Paddleboard – What higher technique to expertise Florida’s wildlife than by a peaceable paddleboard tour? You don’t must be a professional to take this tour — actually, newbies are welcome. After studying the fundamentals of tips on how to navigate your board, you’ll head out on the bayou looking for manatees, dolphins, and a various array of birds. 
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Discuss lunch with a view, Doc Ford’s Run Bar and Grille is its personal paradise! (Photograph Credit score: @docfords)

The place to Eat & Drink in St. Petersburg

St. Pete has a lot to supply within the foods and drinks scene, from the everyday contemporary seafood, to custom-made cocktails with a rotating menu. Listed below are among the greatest locations to eat and drink in St. Pete:

  • Doc Ford’s Rum Bar and Grille – Positioned on the St. Pete Pier, Doc Ford’s Rum Bar and Grille sits proper on the water supplying you with glorious views of Tampa Bay. Get the Macadamia Nut Crusted Grouper, which is served atop an unique mixture of quinoa, jasmine rice, arugula, purple peppers and yellow squash then complimented with a “Toasted Rum” coconut sauce. Additionally they have, because the identify suggests, loads of rum drinks, so attempt their signature Sanibel Sundown with Calypso Spiced Rum and Don Q Coconut Rum with a splash of Amaretto, orange juice, pineapple juice, and grenadine.
  • Noble Crust – Nobel Crust isn’t your typical pizza joint, fairly they name it “Deep South Italian”, mixing southern contemporary components with Italian recipes. Right here you may get starters just like the decadent F.G.B.L.T. which is fried inexperienced tomatoes, Tabasco-honey glazed pork stomach, and pimento cheese. And naturally, you must get one in every of their hearth oven pizzas, like a standard margehrita or one thing extra thrilling just like the Peach + Burrata with pesto, Gorgonzola, caramelized onion, contemporary peach, torn burrata and balsamic honey.
  • The Mandarin Conceal – If you’d like a break from the beachside tiki bar and wish to go all out on among the metropolis’s greatest cocktails, head to the Mandarin Conceal. This little cozy, darkish cocktail lounge with glowing chandeliers is thought for its professional mixologists and its Insta-worthy (and equally scrumptious) drinks. Every Tuesday they create an completely new cocktail menu, so whereas I can’t let you know what shall be on it whenever you go to, it’s going to be new and wonderful. They even have aged cocktails. This place is legit, ya’ll!
St. Pete Beach at twilight with a colorful sunset in St. Petersburg, Florida
Simply suppose, you may be overlooking sprawling seashores at sundown! (Photograph Credit score)

The place to Keep in St. Petersburg

Since St. Pete is a lot seaside, you’ll undoubtedly have the chance to be a seaside bum for the weekend! Listed below are some nice seaside choices in your getaway:

  • This blue seaside apartment is overlooking the Gulf of Mexico and is simply steps from the seaside. You possibly can sit on the balcony and drink because the solar goes down (or rises, if that’s your factor) and prepare dinner within the almost full-sized kitchen.
  • Although this colourful apartment is just not going through the seaside, you’ll be there in just some steps. This rental can also be greater, supplying you with a separate lounge/kitchen and bed room if you wish to unfold out somewhat extra.

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The Good Weekend in Nashville, Tennessee: Itinerary & (Large) Information

Lightner Museum, St. Augustine, Florida-Blog Photo-2
The Lightner Museum in St. Augustine is simply the tip of the historic metropolis iceberg. (Photograph Credit score)

St. Augustine: A Historical past Lover’s Getaway

St. Augustine is just not solely Florida’s oldest metropolis, it’s additionally the oldest constantly occupied European settlement on the continent, i.e. the nation’s oldest metropolis! It goes with out saying that historical past (and ghosts!) abound right here.

St. Augustine sits on Florida’s northeast coast, the place Pedro Menendez — despatched by King Phillip II of Spain, landed in 1565. The king despatched directions to achieve management of the world, which had beforehand been inhabited by the Timucua Native Individuals, and set up it as a navy outpost and Catholic missionary base. 

In the present day it’s a metropolis full of gorgeous Spanish colonial structure, attractive pure parks, and historic points of interest. Get able to eat traditional Florida fare, lay on the seaside, calm down in nature, and get the heebie-jeebies on this historic and haunted metropolis. 

Castillo de San Marco National Monument st augistine florida
Exploring the Castillo de San Marco Nationwide Monument is like stepping again into the seventeenth century. (Photograph Credit score)

Issues to Do in St. Augustine

There may be lots to do in St. Augustine, so it was robust to slim it down. However you’ll undoubtedly wish to get a heavy dose of historical past and spooky time on this centuries-old coastal metropolis.

  • Discover the Castillo de San Marcos – Constructed within the late seventeenth century, the Castillo de San Marcos is the nation’s oldest masonry fort constructed by the Spanish to guard themselves from pirates, Native American tribes, and different imperial powers. Come see the 20-acre fort, with its 33′ tall partitions peppered with holes from invasions. For the reason that fort was constructed with coquina, a sort of sedimentary rock made from shells and lifeless marine life, the fortress by no means cracked, fairly absorbed cannonballs which may nonetheless be seen within the partitions as we speak.
  • Marvel on the Historic Lightner Museum – Since we’re speaking concerning the nation’s oldest metropolis right here, St. Augustine has a whole lot of museums. One of the fascinating, and positively probably the most lovely, is the Lightner Museum, which is housed within the outdated lodge Alcazar, a Spanish Renaissance Revival type constructing in-built 1887. So let’s simply say it’s ornate. Inside it’s type of what you’d think about an eccentric Victorina collector would have – gilded-age circumstances displaying shells, rocks, Native American artifacts, outdated devices, Tiffany glass, and oh, a mummy and a shrunken head.
  • Get Scared on a Ghost Tour – Since St. Augustine is such an outdated metropolis, it’s no marvel that it’s stuffed with loads of tales of those that have by no means crossed to the opposite aspect and nonetheless reside on this historic place. Take an hour and a half lengthy strolling ghost tour which is able to take you to the Previous Fort and cemeteries, or, when you like to combine scary tales and booze, take the two-hour “Spirits with the Spirits” tour to get your buzz and boo on.
octopus dish at odd birds in st augistine florida
Odd Birds additionally has some odd dishes, like their Jimmy Grilled Out made with octopus! (Photograph Credit score: @odd_birds)

The place to Eat & Drink in St. Augustine

Simply since you’re within the oldest metropolis doesn’t imply you must eat old-style meals! St. Augustine has some fashionable easts in some lovely areas. A few of our favorites are:

  • The Floridian – The Floridian is simply that – Florida-themed to the gills! Inside there are many vegetation and tiki-inspired decor, in addition to a phenomenal patio to eat outside. They are saying their meals is “revolutionary southern fare for omnivores, herbivores, and localvores.” Strive the Not Your Momma’s Meatloaf Sandwich or the Fish Camp Fancy Sandwich, and you may wager each chew is native and contemporary!
  • Odd Birds Cocktail Lounge & Kitchen – This tremendous kitschy, tropically pleasant restaurant and bar is the place to get particular cocktails like The Wild Moon Little one, with Tequila Blanco, Strawberry Syrup, Cynar, Pineapple Juice with a touch of Lemon Juice or an Espresso Martini to pep you up. Meals-wise, they’ve signature entrees like their Jimmy Grilled Out with grilled octopus, papa bravas, chimi, French dressing, and nata.
  • Cousteau’s Waffle and Milkshake Bar – In case your candy tooth will get a hankering, head to Cousteau’s Waffle and Milkshake Bar in historic downtown St. Augustine which is simply as divine because it sounds. Get a waffle just like the Whirly Chook topped with contemporary cinnamon apples, vanilla ice cream, caramel drizzle, and bourbon whipped cream, or a milkshake just like the Pele Dos Santos with vanilla ice cream, contemporary bananas, and Nutella. Or get each!
St. Augustine, Florida sunset with sailboats on the water
St. Augustine, Florida sundown with sailboats on the water.

The place to Keep in St. Augustine

St. Augustine, being an outdated, outdated place, requires you to remain in some historic and charming outdated locations your self! Listed below are some fantastically lovely choices to get your within the spirit:

  • This gem within the historic district is so effing cute you’ll wish to name it residence earlier than you permit. This primary-floor house has one bed room, a kitchen, and loads of house. Sit on the screened-in porch and watch sailboats within the harbor and shrimp boats bringing of their catch, and watch the sundown paint the sky.
  • This Twenties 900sq/ft house is big, attractive, and shiny and is the right place to make your “residence” in your weekend getaway. You’ll be below a mile from the Castillo de San Marcos and all one of the best St. Augustine has to supply.

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33 Quirky Issues To Do In Key West, Florida (& Large Journey Information)

Paradise beach at Fort Zachary Taylor Park, Key West. State Park in Florida, USA.
Paradise seaside at Fort Zachary Taylor Park, Key West. State Park in Florida, USA.

Key West: A Tropical Lover’s Getaway

Key West, Florida could also be one of the vital distinctive locations in America: roosters roam the streets, drag queens rule the nightlife, and Cuba’s shut proximity colours its historical past. Your entire island is a colourful, tropical feast for the senses. Is that this paradise? I assumed it could be much less …. bizarre?

To actually recognize Key West in all of its quirky glory, you additionally must get to know its lengthy historical past of pirates, bootleggers, and nonconformists; its resident ghosts and grave-digging iguanas; and the resident animals like six-toed cats who name it residence. It’s additionally the southernmost level of the US, so it is sensible it’s the final on our record!

We even have a complete put up about issues to do in Key West when you’d wish to be taught much more!

Ernest Hemingway House in Key West, Florida

Issues to do in Key West

Key West is the place well-known author Ernest Hemingway as soon as lived, the place you’ll be able to snorkel, and the sunsets are ones to recollect!

  • Go to the Hemingway Home & Museum – The Hemingway Home & Museum is in Previous City Key West, and this yellow, ethereal, many-windowed house is within the French Colonial type with many artwork deco accents on the within. It is a actually huge attraction on Key West for good motive – Hemingway was a prolific author throughout the Twenties and 30s, and he wrote two of his most well-known books on this very home: A Farewell To Arms and To Have and Have Not. Ernest Hemingway lived in Key West for years, making the island his everlasting place of residence within the Thirties, and is the person who I’ve determined to totally blame for all of the cats on the island (in accordance with the official web site, greater than forty cats, who’re all named, stay right here).
  • Snorkel at Fort Zachary Taylor State Park: The one reef you’ll be able to moderately swim to in Key West is the one in Fort Zachary Taylor. The admission for pedestrians is $2.50 and you may spend your complete day right here – there’s not solely swimming, however the park is thought for having many tropical species of birds you’ll be able to see just like the Roseate Spoonbill. These reefs could also be your greatest probability to catch a glimpse on the elusive sea turtle as effectively! Since you can be by yourself on this reef, be sure to convey your individual snorkeling gear or lease one on the park (both method, pack anti-fog spray).
  • Take a Sundown Cruise – A sundown cruise can’t be missed in Key West, they usually usually give out free drinks – as a result of Key West is all the time all the way down to occasion – and are the very best technique to see the sundown. Most of those excursions are about two hours lengthy, returning at round 7pm. Observe that since these are sailboats, the downstairs house of the boat is just about only a rest room and never an area to cover from the solar, so when you burn as badly as I do be sure to convey sunblock! In case you’re touring along with your associate, e-book an intimate cruise like Hazard’s Charters Wind & Wine Sundown Sail Sitting on a ship and watching the sundown collectively is such a romantic technique to spend time with one another! For a livelier night, Cool Key West is a good alternative, with native musicians enjoying and loads of free drinks.

The place to Eat & Drink in Key West

Key West, in addition to being a veritable paradise, has some scrumptious meals choices to match. And a few drinks with character!

  • Seize Breakfast and a Present at Blue Heaven – Blue Heaven is very easy to overlook (search for the signal on a gate behind some bushes), however consuming at this out of doors restaurant feels such as you’re inside a jungle shaded by large banyan timber, banana palms, and colourful hibiscus flowers. The restaurant is residence to cats, chickens AND child chickens, so that you simply would possibly make some animal buddies whilst you eat! Strive their Lobster “BLT” Benny – a spin on the traditional BLT however with contemporary lobster. Blue Heaven additionally has a Rooster Graveyard, which incorporates the stays of cockfighting roosters and a few of Blue Heaven’s newer rooster residents. Each morning Blue Heaven hosts native musicians enjoying calming music that will help you begin your day on the island, so grabbing breakfast right here is certain to get you within the island spirit.
  • Get a Drink and See a Drag present at 801 Bourbon Bar – 801 Bourbon started in 1987 as a piano bar, however as time went on, the main focus grew to become much less on the piano and extra on the drag performances. Only one factor: at 801, the queens don’t lip-sync! They’re nice singers and you may take heed to them sing and dance earlier than the comedy portion of the present. Honest warning: when you’re within the entrance rows, you’ll most likely get teased by the queens. However hey, getting made enjoyable of by a drag queen in entrance of a stay viewers is a present.
  • Dessert that’s Higher than Intercourse: Higher Than Intercourse is THE romantic dessert date spot to go to. Whereas it has not too long ago expanded out of state, that is the unique and the place the house owners reside, so it is best to cease right here at the least as soon as to get some sweets. I’m a giant lover of dessert, and let me be the bearer of fine information: Higher Than Intercourse has desserts that make me weak within the knees. A lot of the desserts have enjoyable names, like the Kinky-er Key West Cream Pie, an excellent locally-themed alternative. Their cake can also be wonderful – fluffy slices piled excessive with icing – with scrumptious caramel and raspberry drizzles that, I’m not ashamed to confess, I fortunately drown my cake in. Yum!
The backyard of an AirBnb in Key West Florida with a hot tub.
There are many little paradises you’ll be able to lease in Key West! (Photograph Credit score)

The place to Keep in Key West

One key factor to notice, although: though there are many residence leases on the island, native rules require a 28-night minimal keep. So when you’re not a distant employee searching for a month in paradise, you’ll wish to e-book a lodge, resort, apartment, or correctly licensed trip rental.

  • The charming Wicker Guesthouse is situated only one block from the Ernest Hemingway Home, with a tropical backyard and an out of doors pool. Rooms embrace microwaves and a small fridge, you’ll be able to lease bikes on-site, and also you’re solely a 10-minute stroll from South Seaside.
  • The Secret Backyard affords an enthralling personal oasis, with two bedrooms, a totally stocked kitchen, and entry to a shared pool.
miami beach florida-Blog Photo-2
Prepare for seaside time! (Photograph Credit score)

What to Pack for Weekend Getaways in Florida

Right here’s what to pack in your baggage to convey with you to the seaside:

  • A number of Swimsuits: There’s an excellent probability you’ll be leaping into the water every single day, so that you’ll wish to convey alongside a number of pairs of swimsuits so that you all the time have one thing dry to placed on! I’m a dimension 16/18, and my favourite swimsuit is that this one, which I actually have in 3 completely different colours. It’s wonderful. It’s excellent. It’s a freakin’ steal! I additionally love this go well with, and that is my favourite one piece. For extra swimsuit picks, try my information to swimsuits for curvy women.
  • Journey Towel: There may be completely no assure that the towels at your accomodation are going to suit round your waist. Frankly, they not often match round my left thigh. Plus, they’re heavy and ponderous and you may get in hassle for bringing them out of the lodge. So simply to be protected, I all the time convey my very own travel-friendly, light-weight, quick-drying journey towel!
  • Journey Clothesline: Newsflash: your lodge’s moist, darkish rest room is absolutely the WORST place to hold your clothes as much as dry. As an alternative, cling this tiny journey clothesline up someplace that will get loads of airflow and solar, like on a curtain rod in entrance of the window! Your moist swimsuit and journey towel shall be dry very quickly.
  • Sand Repelling Seaside Mat: I hate sand SO MUCH and this mat is made with magical sand-repelling qualities. If sand doesn’t make you wish to go stay in an igloo endlessly, you’ll be able to all the time simply use your towel as a mat as a substitute!

On seaside days, we pack up our day bag with all of our seaside gear and a full bottle of chilly water to remain hydrated (our insulated water bottle retains water chilly for an unbelievably very long time). And naturally, tons and lot of sunscreen – don’t overlook to re-apply!

For extra beachy packing suggestions and curvy-girl particular solutions (ahem: do you might have chafe balm but??) head over to our seaside trip packing information!

READ THIS POST

The 6 Greatest Swimsuits for Curves: Comfy, Cute, and Discipline-Examined

Concerning the Writer: Richie Goff is a Louisville, Kentucky native with a fantastic love of the outside. When he isn’t rising flowers for enjoyable, he’s the Editor-in-Chief of Sensible Wanderlust and Let’s Go Louisville. He has been a good friend of Lia’s since highschool, they usually have taken loads of their very own disaster-prone adventures collectively!


Which of those weekend getaways in Florida excites you probably the most? What are you most excited to do? Drop us a remark beneath!

In search of extra Florida inspiration? Try our different posts:

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In search of extra USA inspiration? We’ve a MASSIVE journey information for all our favourite locations within the US and helpful recommendation, packing suggestions and journey guides. Click on the hyperlink beneath to obtain!

Our High Journey Suggestions & Sources

Listed below are our favourite journey suggestions & assets for saving cash and planning journey logistics! For extra suggestions, try our journey suggestions useful resource web page or our information to planning a visit.

  • Reserving Flights: To attain flight offers, search on Google Flights or Kayak. Cash-saving suggestions: fly mid-week or on the weekend; fly carry-on solely on a funds airline; and take red-eyes or early morning flights.
  • Lodging: We normally keep in budget-friendly trip leases, boutique accommodations or personal rooms in hostels. We use Reserving.com to e-book accommodations (we love their versatile cancellation coverage) and Hostelworld to e-book hostels (low deposit, simple change/cancellation, and glorious critiques). For trip leases, we want to e-book utilizing VRBO as a result of they have decrease charges and higher help than Airbnb, and we’re not followers of Airbnb’s unethical observe file. You can even e-book trip leases on Expedia and Resorts.com. We additionally use TrustedHousesitters as each hosts (for our residence and our fur-child) and vacationers!
  • Journey Insurance coverage: We all the time, all the time, ALWAYS purchase journey insurance coverage for worldwide journeys, and we STRONGLY recommend it – go to our Journey Insurance coverage Information to search out out why. We suggest both World Nomads or SafetyWing for worldwide journey insurance coverage. SafetyWing is likely one of the few insurance policies that covers Covid-19, they usually have glorious month-to-month insurance policies which are excellent for Digital Nomads and long run vacationers!
  • Journey Credit score Card: We e-book all of our journeys on our favourite journey bank card. Not solely can we earn money again that we are able to spend on extra journey, however the card affords incredible journey perks like journey insurance coverage, journey delay and cancellation protection, misplaced baggage reimbursement, and rental automobile protection, which helps defend us on our travels. Be taught extra right here.
  • Vaccines & Meds: We use the journey guides on the CDC web site to analysis advisable drugs and vaccines for worldwide journeys. We all the time suggest getting each vaccine advisable by the CDC! You may get them at your major care physician’s workplace or a walk-in pharmacy.
  • Excursions: We love reserving guided excursions, particularly meals excursions and strolling excursions, to get an area’s perspective and a historical past lesson whereas sight-seeing! We e-book our excursions utilizing Viator and GetYourGuide.
  • Transportation: We use Rome2Rio to determine tips on how to get from place to position, and e-book native transportation on-line utilizing Bookaway wherever we are able to. After we e-book a rental automobile, we use Kayak to match rental corporations and discover one of the best deal.
  • Baggage Storage: At any time when we’re testing early or profiting from a protracted layover, we use LuggageHero to soundly retailer our baggage whereas we’re operating round. Use the code PRACTICALW for two hours of free baggage storage on us.
  • VPN Service: A VPN retains your digital data (like web site login particulars, financial institution information, and many others) protected, even whenever you’re linked to an unsecured community whereas touring. Plus, it enables you to use Netflix & different streaming websites overseas! We use NordVPN. Use the code WANDERLUSTPROMO whenever you enroll!
  • What to Pack: Listed below are the journey necessities that we convey on each journey. We even have packing lists for decent climate, chilly climate, and lots of extra. Check out all of our packing guides!

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