Sandy, sweeping beaches. Old, haunted cities with lots of ghost stories. Lots & lots of seafood. Florida is nicknamed the Sunshine State, with an average of 237 sunny days a year. It's truly the land of a million sandy beaches, theme parks, and a whole lot of things to do. And it's one of the best places for a mini-vacation with so many truly unique weekend getaways in Florida! Here are the 10 best weekend getaways in Florida, from beach getaways, to adventurous expeditions, to ghost stories! 60+ activities included!

Please double examine what’s open earlier than your journey and observe all native vax & masks tips to maintain your self and others protected! Additionally, adverts are how we pay our payments and preserve our weblog free so that you can get pleasure from. We additionally use affiliate hyperlinks; in the event you make a purchase order via them, we might obtain a small fee without charge to you.

Sandy, sweeping seashores. Outdated, haunted cities with numerous ghost tales. Tons & numerous seafood. Florida is nicknamed the Sunshine State, with a mean of 237 sunny days a yr. It’s really the land of one million sandy seashores, theme parks, and an entire lot of issues to do. And it’s top-of-the-line locations for a mini-vacation with so many really distinctive weekend getaways in Florida!

As somebody who grew up going to Florida nearly yearly, I’ve spent many a lazy hour within the Sunshine State traversing seashores, lakes, swamps, and vacationer sights that fall below the department of a sure sort 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 reveals 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 Finest Weekend Getaways in Florida

Solely have a weekend away? There may be a lot that may be finished within the sunny state of Florida! Beneath are ten superb weekend getaways in Florida, whether or not you’re in search of 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 positively have an excellent head begin in your planning. So let’s get to it!

READ THIS POST

The Best Disney World Resort Bar Crawl: A (Former) Cast Member’s Guide

lake eola orlando florida
Outdoors the theme parks, Orlando is each stunning and thrilling! (Photo Credit)

Orlando, Florida: An Journey Lover’s Getaway

Orlando, Florida, you might 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 most important theme parks and miniature golf programs, there’s truly 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 triggered farmers to maneuver their crops farther south. The title “Orlando” has blended provenance, one account saying it was from a soldier named” Orlando Reeves” who fought within the Second Seminole War in opposition to the Seminole Tribe, the unique inhabitants of the realm.

There’s one other idea that it was named after the protagonist Orlando from Shakespeare’s As You Like It, with a person named James Speer proposing in a letter in 1885 that “Orlando was a veritable Forest of Arden, the locale of As You Like It.

Nevertheless it received its title, the “Metropolis Lovely” 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 you already know the place to look. Listed below are a few of the greatest issues to do in Orlando exterior the theme parks:

  • Scenic Boat Tour of Winter Park Florida – I’ve visited Orlando many instances and I’ve to say this is among the coolest experiences I’ve had right here. Situated within the beautiful (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 a few of the largest and oldest mansions you’ll ever see – from the water that’s. The boat drivers are full of knowledge and horrible puns, so you already know you’re in for an excellent time!
  • Night Glow Paddleboarding – Keep in mind all these lakes I discussed Orlando having? Properly, one of the simplest ways to expertise them is with Night Glow Paddleboarding by Epic Paddle Adventures. Even in the event you’ve by no means finished standup paddleboarding earlier than, the extraordinarily pleasant and enjoyable staff could have you up very quickly to discover the lake. The most effective half is, because the solar goes down the paddleboards mild up (which you’ll change the colour) and the employees brings a cooler with beer or White Claws and even performs celebration music (and takes requests!). It is a fabulous technique to spend a night, and the employees really makes it one thing to write down residence about.
  • Morse Museum of American Art – The Morse Museum has one factor on its thoughts – the world’s most complete assortment of works by Louis Comfort Tiffany objects. Everyone knows Tiffany lamps, and there are many distinctive ones right here, however moreover lamps there are Artwork Nouveau vases, jewellery, and even an elaborate chapel inside created for the Chicago World’s Truthful in 1893. The temper right here is dim and enjoyable, and in case you have an eye fixed for magnificence, you’ll positively be at residence on this creative paradise.

READ THIS POST

How to Do Disney: A Disney (for Adults) Parks Guide by a Former Cast Member

The place to Eat & Drink in Orlando

  • Orlando Milkhouse – I do know what you’re pondering – you’re lactose illiberal – fortunate for you Milkhouse is actually named after the “milk district” through which it’s positioned. Whereas you will discover dairy treats like native ice cream firm Kelly’s Homemade Ice Cream right here, that is the place to get an extremely crafted cocktail and a few killer meals from Cicchetti Kitchen positioned inside. The menu consists of gadgets 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 realm’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 private tour to listen to extra concerning the historical past and the way their beer is made!
  • The Hammered Lamb – Because the title suggests, the Hammered Lamb is a good place to drink! Additionally positioned throughout the best way from Lake Ivanhoe, this out of doors (and lined) bar and restaurant sits subsequent to the prepare tracks. And each time a prepare goes by which means one factor… prepare photographs! Sure, of their quest to get you somewhat tipsy photographs are served each time a prepare 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 End 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 Company 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 will get some critically savory ramen, take a look at Gideon’s Bakehouse with their Gothic, witchy aesthetic and cookies which can be almost a half-pound every!
swimming pool at Caribe Royale Orlando florida
The swimming pool at Caribe Royale Orlando is really an oasis. This may very well be a complete trip!

The place to Keep in Orlando

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

  • The Caribe Royale Orlando is positioned on World Heart Drive, a stone’s throw away Disney from in the event you plan on visiting on one in all your days and so they even have their very own Disney transportation. The lodge itself is lately renovated with giant, spacious and fashionable rooms, and loads of dining options on-site. The crown jewel of the lodge is its giant pool space, which incorporates waterfalls and a waterslide. Whereas this lodge shouldn’t be precisely a funds lodge, it’s definitely worth the splurge for the facilities and handy location.
  • This beautiful rental with a heated pool has a brilliant, 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 Art.
  • For an much more budgets pleasant choice, take a look at this colorful mid-century modern condo additionally positioned 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!

READ THIS POST

11 Crazy Romantic Things to Do in Daytona Beach, Florida

New Smyrna Seaside: An Artwork Lover’s Getaway

New Smyrna Seaside has an entire 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 right now) metropolis of Smyrna, from which he determined to call the town New Smyrna.

Immediately new Smyrna is named an artists’ hub, residence to the Atlantic Center 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 you 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 be identified for its incredible surfing, ranked by Surfer Journal because the number 5 best surf town. With waves nearly each week of the yr, New Smyrna is a sizzling spot for surfers and surf tradition, regardless that New Smyrna is named the “shark capital of the world” as a result of close by inlet. So perhaps stick extra to artwork, and go away 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 the very best actions are:

  • Marine Discovery Center 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 cute dolphin repair, this can be the very best place to see them!
  • Smyrna Dunes Park– This 184-acre inlet park gives two miles of boardwalks the place you’ll be able to see gopher tortoises nesting throughout 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 good spot for a stroll, and to go to the seaside to stroll alongside the jetty and gander on the Ponce de Leon lighthouse throughout the inlet.
  • Explore the Canal Street 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 right now continues to be the cultural hub of commerce and artwork. Right here you will discover retailers like The Gallery which sells gourmand balsamic vinegar (I like to recommend the pomegranate variety!), in addition to The Hub on Canal, which is a community-supported artwork house the place native artists promote their wares. They do monthly events as effectively just like the Basic Cruise Automotive Present, artwork strolls, and gallery walks. There may be all the time one thing occurring!
  • Try the Historical past Museum and Outdated Fort Park – New Smyrna is residence to numerous tradition and historical past, because it’s the third oldest metropolis within the state! Cease by the New Smyrna Museum of History first to be taught concerning the unique Native People, the Spanish’s arrival, how indigo dye turned a money crop for the town, and its completely tubular surfing scene. Afterward, head throughout the road from the museum is Old 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 website for developing ships or the unique Castillo de San Marcos? Nobody is aware of!
  • Walk around the Old Sugar Mills Ruins – Three miles away from the museum and Outdated Fort Park are the Old 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, in order that they burnt down the Spanish colonizer’s mill in retaliation. Immediately 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 people who intruded. Remember the park entrance shouldn’t be effectively marked – go to 600 Mission Drive, New Smyrna Beach, FL and enter the small highway 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 surprising areas, let’s dig in!

  • Norwood’s Eastery & Bar Treehouse – Norwood’s is the sort of place that makes you’re feeling like a child once more, as a result of you’ll be able to truly eat dinner in a large treehouse with twinkling lights! Sit out on the second-story patio nestled amongst the timber and eat tremendous recent 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 crops and pergolas to make you’re feeling cozy and magical. To begin, order the Wagyu Brief Rib Hummus, with hummus they make from scratch, over-roasted boneless Wagyu quick rib, toasted Pita, Za’atar concord herbs, and EVOO, or the Shrimp Gambas (Spanish fashion shrimp) with Creole butter sauteed, wild-caught American shrimp, garlic, chilies, Calabrian oil, and crisp baguette. For a fresher-than-fresh entree, get the Good Catch, a Cooks catch with blackened honey pecan-crusted, shrimp, whiskey butter cream sauce, chef’s vegetable, and Yukon mash potatoes. All the pieces right here is beautiful in taste and preparation!
  • Outriggers Tiki Bar and Grille – For maybe the very best place to get brunch in New Smyrna, take a look at the Outriggers Tiki Bar and Grille. Located proper alongside the marina, watch boats go by as you dig into some Rooster & 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’ll be able to by no means go fallacious with being near the ocean.

The place to remain in New Smyrna Seaside

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

  • This super beachy cottage is actually simply steps away from the seaside and priced excellent! With a kitchenette and single bed room and loo, you’ll have every part it’s worthwhile to discover the tremendous cute 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 will get to the seaside in a jiffy! There’s additionally a pool and a linked Tiki bar, so it’s a terrific place to seize a drink and watch the waves roll.

READ THIS POST

Beach Vacation Packing List: What to Pack for the Beach (by a Curvy Girl)

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 largest city by landmass within the continental US, coming in at a whopping 840 sq. miles! With a lot space you’ll be able to guess there are many adventures available – and it’s top-of-the-line weekend getaways in Florida particularly by way of getting in contact with nature.

With such a big landmass it additionally is smart they’ve the largest urban park system within the nation, which is 4 instances the scale of Manhattan at 80,000 acres. You’ve received loads of exploring to do!

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

What To Do in Jacksonville

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

  • Sunrise Yoga with MBody Yoga I do know, I do know, waking up earlier than the dawn might not sound like probably the most enjoyable exercise, however it’s an effective way to start your morning on a weekend getaway in Florida. As you stretch with steerage out of your teacher on Neptune Seaside, your entire 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 getting into your lungs as you’re feeling your muscle tissue launch.
  • Boneyard Beach – Situated alongside a 3-mile stretch of the Nassau Sound is Boneyard Seaside at Huge Talbot Island State Park. These “bones” aren’t actually bones in any respect – however huge 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’ll stroll alongside these gnarly skeletons and even climb them. These useless timber shield from additional erosion of the flora behind the seaside and make a terrific place for a considerably morbid and kooky stroll.
  • Strive Stand Up Paddleboarding within the ocean – Even in case you 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 in the event you fall, you’ll splash gently into the ocean and climb again on. Their 90-minute beginner classes are the right spot to get your toes moist (actually) and you might discover you’re hooked on paddleboarding earlier than you already know 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 when you be taught concerning the Timucua Tribe who have 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 do-it-yourself cookies (that’s what retains coming again, they are saying!). Our tour information that day was a former trainer named Buddy, and you’ll inform Kayak Amelia has a real love of instructing and the atmosphere.
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 recent fish eats with an entire lot of taste! The next eating places are positioned in Neptune Seaside, a terrific place to have a chunk then stroll alongside the seaside.

  • North Beach 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 fallacious with the Crispy Calamari with Pecorino cheese & spicy tomato sauce or, in the event 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 robust 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 the very 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 recent seafood delivered every day! The principle occasion in fact 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!

READ THIS POST

35 Things Nobody Tells You About Visiting Costa Rica

The place to Keep in Jacksonville

Jacksonville has 22 miles of seashores, so it’s positively 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 facet, in the event you’re in search of a spot within the coronary heart of Neptune Seaside and need some swanky facilities like a spa, One Ocean Resort & Spa is the place to deal with your self. Situated proper on the seaside and steps away from MBody Yoga and the eating places talked about above, you’ll be able to sit back of their pool and absorb all of the beachy, calming ambiance of this attractive resort.
  • This beachside apartment 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 condominium 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! (Photo Credit)

Sanibel Island: A Leisure Lover’s Getaway

Sanibel Island is one in all my favourite locations on this planet. I’ve been coming right here since I used to be a child with my prolonged household, and I by no means bored with 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 positioned off the coast of Fort Meyers on the Gulf of Mexico, and this little island is located in such a approach (East to West) that it’s the prime spot for shelling. A few of the rarest shells on this planet are discovered right here, just like the well-known Junonia, and there’s even a reputation for folks bending over to select up shells: the “Sanibel Stoop”.

Sanibel Island seems like a real place to loosen up – no huge chain shops or eating places however quite native retailers, shelling cruises, and an entire lot of “Sanibel Stooping”.

READ THIS POST

The Ultimate Packing List: 43 Must-Have Travel Items (by a Full-Time Travel Blogger)

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

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 all their well-known sunsets. However in the event you do need 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 all kinds of shells like tulips, olives, scallops, and perhaps in the event you’re actually fortunate, the elusive Junonia. Simply bear in mind to not accumulate any shells with residing creatures in them – that’s their residence!
  • Benefit from the wildlife at a Wildlife Refuge – The J.N. “Ding” Darling National 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’ll be able to even climb many towers to face and chicken from!
  • Bike across the Island – With over 25 miles of biking trails, one of the simplest ways 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 places to rent bikes, and most VRBOs and accommodations could have ones you’ll be able to borrow. Cease by Periwinkle Place as you bike too, to seek out every kind of enjoyable retailers to discover.
orange crunch cake from the bubble room sanibel isalnd
The Orange Crunch Cake from the Bubble Room is very addictive. It’s onerous 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’ll be able to’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, truly positioned 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 intently guarded in fact). Their different star is their large slices of cake, like their Orange Crunch cake, a yellow cake layered with almond brown sugar, and lined in orange cream cheese icing. You’ll be able to even come only for dessert!
  • The Island Cow – This informal restaurant touts “udderly nice meals”, which is true! This can be the very best place in all of Sanibel to get brunch, and so they serve your desk a basket of complimentary do-it-yourself muffins as starters, which is one thing I really feel very obsessed with. 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 – recent pan-seared yellowfin tuna with sesame seeds and a honey ginger glaze on a recent backyard salad with our do-it-yourself 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 fabricated 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 revel 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… (Photo Credit)

The place to Keep on Sanibel Island

Staying on Sanibel can get expensive, 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:

READ THIS POST

18 Magical Disneyland Picture Ideas: The Ultimate Disneyland Photography Guide

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 truly the extinct Pohoy and Tocobaga Native American Tribes lived right here lengthy earlier than. The parable persists to today that de León got here to America to seek out the “Fountain of Youth”, although there is no such thing as a hard evidence that that is true, and it’s extra seemingly he was solely in search of gold and land to steal.

After that, the realm remained kind of untouched till it turned a part of the US in 1845, and in 1884 a person named Henry B. Plant constructed a railroad right down to Tampa with lavish accommodations alongside the best way.

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 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 will get a terrific 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 absolutely standing is now the Henry B. Plant Museum, positioned in downtown Tampa. The attractive property displays the peak of the Gilded Age in America – with its Moorish and Victorian structure and its silver minarets which have change into an architectural icon of Tampa. Inside, you’ll be able to see every part from imported Japanese vases made within the 1800s to gold plated French chairs – this museum is a dream for anybody who appreciates high quality ornament and furnishings.
  • Meet the Ghosts of Ybor Metropolis Meet two varieties of spirits on this Haunted Ybor Pub Walking Tour as you discover 4 of the spookiest pubs in downtown Tampa. When you get pleasure from 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 simply stepped off the set of a pirate film (minus the swords, in fact). Haunted pub excursions are few and much in between, so be sure you go to this one when you’re right here, and make sure to take a look at a few of the last remaining cigar factory when you’re right here!
  • Spot The Unusual Manatee – Centuries in the past, when pirates and European explorers have been out on the ocean for months, they’d usually come residence claiming they’d seen stunning girls within the water. Immediately, it’s thought that these sailors have been seeing manatees from a terrific distance. Within the Nineteen Eighties, an influence station in Tampa was shut down and that very same yr, folks seen manatees coming in nice numbers, and the federally protected Manatee sanctuary Tampa Electric’s Manatee Viewing Center 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 top-of-the-line weekend getaways in Florida.

  • Mandy’s To Go – This spot is one superb piece of Cuba in Tampa. Mandy’s has a really home-cooked really feel to it – the workers 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 don’t know what their secret is, however I’m obsessed. Because the title suggests, the meals is to go solely, so decide up sandwiches after which go to the beach for a enjoyable picnic!
  • Ulele – At Ulele (You-lay-lee), you will discover meals that’s impressed by the Native Tribes of Florida. Ulele is positioned on the Hillsborough River, and the Tampa Riverwalk subsequent to it’s colorfully lit up at evening. Many 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, in the event you’re into that sort 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 assume to pair a deliciously seasoned grouper filet with a Gouda ale béchamel however hey, I’m not a chef for a purpose. Since Ulele is on the Riverwalk, it might 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, however it’s there for a purpose – Bern’s Steakhouse is unbelievable and has been round in Tampa since 1956. Strolling into this huge restaurant seems like strolling right into a Victorian fortress – the partitions are a deep pink, 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 among the highest high quality beefs available on the market, however any steak you order will probably be cooked expertly to your liking. If 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. Be sure that to make a reservation on-line or over the telephone effectively upfront, and their costume code is enterprise informal to semi-formal.

READ THIS POST

29 Things Nobody Tells You About Savannah, Georgia

tampa riverwalk florida getaways
Strolling down the Tampa Riverwalk is an effective 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 in the event 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 super cute hotel room on the Florida Palace Lodge is true within the coronary heart of Downtown and will provide you with some severe Magnificence & the Beast vibes. It’s additionally proper subsequent to the Tampa Riverwalk, so that you’ll have leisure obtainable everytime you like!
ocean drive miami florida-Blog Photo-2
Miami is residence to stunning seashores and delightful Artwork Deco structure. (Photo Credit)

Miami: A Magnificence Lover’s Getaway

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

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 often called the “Magic Metropolis” in fashionable instances as a result of it went from nowheresville within the early 1900s till the Florida land boom of the 1920s made it appear to spring up by “magic”.

Immediately 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 a few of the greatest eating places and puff on a cigar.

READ THIS POST

Virtual Vacation to the Beach: Take a Tropical (Virtual) Trip from Home

vizcaya in miami florida
The Vizcaya Museum & Gardens is like moving into Europe! (Photo Credit)

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 the very best of Miami in only a weekend. A few of the greatest issues to get a style of Miami are:

  • Take the Miami South Beach Art Deco Walking Tour – As beforehand talked about, Miami is residence to the biggest assortment of Artwork Deco buildings on this planet, which is a method from the Twenties and 30s characterised by sturdy 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 tools builder James Deering between 1914 and 1922, this sweeping property exemplified the European villa fashion 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 title “Miami’s residence”.
  • Do the Little Havana Food and Walking Tour in Miami – A good 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’re going to 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 hearken 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 guess 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 Nineteen 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 can satiate our quick meals cravings – however quick meals that’s truly good and do-it-yourself – so pop on this cute 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 will 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 – Situated on the marina, Monte’s Coconut Grove is the place to get recent seafood in a tropical setting. Step below the thatched rooves of this tiki hut setting and order some Conch Fritters which can be fried in spicy batter with cocktail & tartar to start out together with some Gulf Oysters. In your entree, you’ll be able to’t beat good old school fish and chips, or step it up with the Mahi Sandwich. However actually 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 stunning! (Photo Credit)

The place to Keep in Miami

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

  • This charming garden cottage is tremendous cozy, cute, and magical – your very personal non-public plant paradise. Situated proper by the town middle and Little Havana, you’ll be able to discover the town after which come again to your personal 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 super modern and stylish one-bedroom apartment is positioned only a 5 to 10-minute stroll to all the very best of South Seaside. Moreover a kitchen to cook dinner in, this constructing additionally has its personal shady pool, sure to maintain you cool on sizzling afternoons!
  • For an superior funds choice, this condo in an actual Art Deco building could also be small however you might have the seaside at your fingertips! And you’ll’t beat staying in a bit of historical past.

READ THIS POST

Two Weeks in Costa Rica: The Ultimate 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! (Photo Credit)

Fort Lauderdale: A Homosexual Getaway

Although solely about 45 minutes away from Miami, Fort Lauderdale is a brilliant sizzling spot for LGBTQ+ vacationers. Even their present mayor is homosexual! In order for you some good old school homosexual enjoyable (sure, we are saying homosexual right here!) Fort Lauderdale is the place to see glorious drag, take a look at the homosexual bars, and naturally, sandy (homosexual) seashores.

The Metropolis of Fort Lauderdale is called for the second Seminole fort constructed to battle the Seminole Tribe in 1838, as European colonizers stole their land and drove them out. Town right now is nicknamed “The Venice of America”, as a result of 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.

sebastian-beach-fort-lauderdale
Sebastian Avenue Seaside is the gayest seaside in Florida, perhaps the world! (Photo Credit)

Issues to do in Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale is all about enjoyable, drinks, and seaside time! If this seems like spring break, you’re not fallacious, 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, and so they have 23 miles of seashores crammed into 36 sq. miles of metropolis. That’s loads of seashores! Sebastian Street Beach is named the homosexual seaside, and is a good place to folks 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 turned 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 Center, 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, you might be curious concerning the “Venice of America”. Town has 165 miles of navigable waterways, and taking a look at pictures 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 preserve 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 Show 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 distinct present with a distinct 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 an enormous homosexual time in an informal ambiance, take a look at 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 principle gayborhood of Fort Lauderdale, although technically it’s truly its personal metropolis! Alongside Wilton Drive, the principle homosexual thoroughfare, you’ll discover bars like Infinity Lounge for an after-work drink, Hunters for dancing, and The Pub for superb drag reveals. This strip is definitely walkable, and simply be sure you’re respectful in the event you’re not a queer particular person getting into a queer house!
A personal pool on my weekend getaway? Don’t thoughts if I do! (Photo Credit)

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 apartment is true within the coronary heart of Wilton Manors, making bar hopping/crawling simple and protected! The condominium is fashionable and clear, and the very best half is your personal non-public pool within the yard surrounded by palm timber and flowers.
  • For that seaside life, take a look at this super chic apartment that’s proper on the scenic Intercoastal Waterway. If you’re not watching the boats roll by out of your spacious condominium, you’ll be able to cool off within the pool or stroll a block to Fort Lauderdale seaside!

READ THIS POST

38 Enchanting Things to Do in Savannah, Georgia

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

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 distinct world-class seaside each day. With vigorous city seashores — and the open-air bars, volleyball video games, and vibrant power that include — quiet, undeveloped island seashores, and every part in between, you’ll need to pack loads of sunscreen (and a boogie board) in your weekend in St. Pete. 

That’s to not say there isn’t a lot extra to do in the event you want a break from the solar (St. Pete averages 360 days of solar per yr!). Cultural sights — just like the Salvador Dali Museum and the Chihuly Collection — and an thrilling meals scene can punctuate your enjoyable within the solar.

Fort de Soto Park st petersberg florida
All this nature is true at your fingertips in Fort de Soto Park! (Photo Credit)

Issues to Do in St. Petersburg

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

  • Hit One among America’s Favourite Seashores – Rated the #1 seaside within the US by Journey Advisor in 2021, St. Pete Beach is every part a seaside must be. White, sugar sand; unbelievable sunsets; clear, emerald water, and — in fact — seaside bars. Spend the day absorbing the solar, splashing within the surf, and marveling on the plain great thing about this Gulf Coast seaside. And on the finish of the day (heck, everytime you need), head to 1 or two of the open-air seaside bars — Jimmy B’s has dwell music and a sprawling, beachside patio.
  • Take pleasure in 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’ll be able to hike, bike, loosen up on the seashores, and even discover the historic fort — accomplished in 1900. You’ll be able to 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 experience) 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 a beautiful nature path that can take you thru the center 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 dwell. You may also hire 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 peaceful paddleboard tour? You don’t need to be a professional to take this tour — in truth, newbies are welcome. After studying the fundamentals of methods to navigate your board, you’ll head out on the bayou seeking manatees, dolphins, and a various array of birds. 
doc crow's st petersberg florida
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 recent seafood, to custom-made cocktails with a rotating menu. Listed below are a few of the greatest locations to eat and drink in St. Pete:

  • Doc Ford’s Rum Bar and Grille – Situated 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, pink peppers and yellow squash then complimented with a “Toasted Rum” coconut sauce. Additionally they have, because the title 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, quite they name it “Deep South Italian”, mixing southern recent components with Italian recipes. Right here you will 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, it’s important to get one in all their hearth oven pizzas, like a conventional margehrita or one thing extra thrilling just like the Peach + Burrata with pesto, Gorgonzola, caramelized onion, recent peach, torn burrata and balsamic honey.
  • The Mandarin Hide – In order for you a break from the beachside tiki bar and need to go all out on a few of the metropolis’s greatest cocktails, head to the Mandarin Disguise. This little cozy, darkish cocktail lounge with glowing chandeliers is thought for its skilled mixologists and its Insta-worthy (and equally scrumptious) drinks. Every Tuesday they create an fully new cocktail menu, so whereas I can’t inform you what will probably be on it whenever you go to, you already know it’s going to be new and superb. 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 assume, you would be overlooking sprawling seashores at sundown! (Photo Credit)

The place to Keep in St. Petersburg

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

  • This blue beach condo is overlooking the Gulf of Mexico and is simply steps from the seaside. You’ll be able to sit on the balcony and drink because the solar goes down (or rises, if that’s your factor) and cook dinner within the almost full-sized kitchen.
  • Although this colorful condo shouldn’t be dealing with the seaside, you’ll be there in only a few steps. This rental can be larger, supplying you with a separate lounge/kitchen and bed room if you wish to unfold out somewhat extra.

READ THIS POST

The Perfect Weekend in Nashville, Tennessee: Itinerary & (Massive) Guide

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

St. Augustine: A Historical past Lover’s Getaway

St. Augustine shouldn’t be 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 realm, which had beforehand been inhabited by the Timucua Native People, and set up it as a navy outpost and Catholic missionary base. 

Immediately it’s a metropolis full of lovely Spanish colonial structure, attractive pure parks, and historic sights. Get able to eat traditional Florida fare, lay on the seaside, loosen up 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. (Photo Credit)

Issues to Do in St. Augustine

There may be quite a bit to do in St. Augustine, so it was robust to slender it down. However you’ll positively need 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. Because the fort was built with coquina, a kind of sedimentary rock fabricated from shells and useless marine life, the fortress by no means cracked, quite absorbed cannonballs which might nonetheless be seen within the partitions right now.
  • Marvel on the Historic Lightner MuseumSince we’re speaking concerning the nation’s oldest metropolis right here, St. Augustine has a lot of museums. One of the fascinating, and definitely probably the most stunning, is the Lightner Museum, which is housed within the outdated lodge Alcazar, a Spanish Renaissance Revival fashion constructing in-built 1887. So let’s simply say it’s ornate. Inside it’s sort of what you’d think about an eccentric Victorina collector would have – gilded-age instances 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 facet and nonetheless reside on this historic place. Take an hour and a half lengthy walking ghost tour which is able to take you to the Outdated Fort and cemeteries, or, in the event 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 it’s important to eat old-style meals! St. Augustine has some fashionable easts in some stunning areas. A few of our favorites are:

  • The Floridian – The Floridian is simply that – Florida-themed to the gills! Inside there are many crops and tiki-inspired decor, in addition to a fantastic patio to eat outdoor. 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’ll guess each chunk is native and recent!
  • 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 Fowl topped with recent cinnamon apples, vanilla ice cream, caramel drizzle, and bourbon whipped cream, or a milkshake just like the Pele Dos Santos with vanilla ice cream, recent 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 cute choices to get your within the spirit:

  • This gem in the historic district is so effing cute you’ll need to name it residence earlier than you permit. This primary-floor condominium 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 1920s 900sq/ft apartment is large, attractive, and brilliant 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 the very best St. Augustine has to supply.

READ THIS POST

33 Quirky Things To Do In Key West, Florida (& Massive Travel Guide)

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 might be much less …. bizarre?

To actually admire Key West in all of its quirky glory, you additionally need to 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 smart it’s the final on our record!

We even have an entire put up about things to do in Key West in the event 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 House & Museum – The Hemingway Home & Museum is in Outdated City Key West, and this yellow, ethereal, many-windowed house is within the French Colonial fashion with many artwork deco accents on the within. It is a actually huge attraction on Key West for good purpose – 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 Nineteen Thirties, and is the person who I’ve determined to completely blame for all of the cats on the island (in keeping with the official web site, greater than forty cats, who’re all named, dwell right here).
  • Snorkel at Fort Zachary Taylor State Park: The one reef you’ll be able to fairly swim to in Key West is the one in Fort Zachary Taylor. The admission for pedestrians is $2.50 and you’ll spend your entire 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 you convey your personal snorkeling gear or hire one on the park (both approach, pack anti-fog spray).
  • Take a Sundown Cruise – A sundown cruise can’t be missed in Key West, and so they usually give out free drinks – as a result of Key West is all the time right down to celebration – 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 lavatory and never an area to cover from the solar, so in the event you burn as badly as I do be sure you convey sunblock! In case you’re touring together with your associate, e book an intimate cruise like Danger’s Charters Wind & Wine Sunset 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 selection, with native musicians enjoying and loads of free drinks.

The place to Eat & Drink in Key West

Key West, moreover 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 huge 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 when you eat! Strive their Lobster “BLT” Benny – a spin on the traditional BLT however with recent lobster. Blue Heaven additionally has a Rooster Graveyard, which incorporates the stays of cockfighting roosters and a few of Blue Heaven’s more moderen rooster residents. Each morning Blue Heaven hosts native musicians enjoying calming music that can assist you begin your day on the island, so grabbing breakfast right here is bound 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 turned 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’ll hearken to them sing and dance earlier than the comedy portion of the present. Truthful warning: in the event 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 dwell viewers is a present.
  • Dessert that’s Higher than Intercourse: Better Than Sex is THE romantic dessert date spot to go to. Whereas it has lately expanded out of state, that is the unique and the place the house owners reside, so you need to cease right here at the least as soon as to get some sweets. I’m an enormous lover of dessert, and let me be the bearer of fine information: Higher Than Intercourse has desserts that make me weak within the knees. Many of the desserts have enjoyable names, like the Kinky-er Key West Cream Pie, an excellent locally-themed selection. Their cake can be superb – 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 hire in Key West! (Photo Credit)

The place to Keep in Key West

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

  • The charming Wicker Guesthouse is positioned 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 hire bikes on-site, and also you’re solely a 10-minute stroll from South Seaside.
  • The Secret Garden provides an enthralling non-public oasis, with two bedrooms, a completely stocked kitchen, and entry to a shared pool.
miami beach florida-Blog Photo-2
Prepare for seaside time! (Photo Credit)

What to Pack for Weekend Getaways in Florida

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

  • Several Swimsuits: There’s an excellent probability you’ll be leaping into the water each day, so that you’ll need 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 this one, which I actually have in 3 completely different colours. It’s superb. It’s excellent. It’s a freakin’ steal! I additionally love this swimsuit, and that is my favourite one piece. For extra swimsuit picks, take a look at my information to swimsuits for curvy girls.
  • Travel 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 hulking and you will get in bother 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 travel towel!
  • Travel Clothesline: Newsflash: your lodge’s moist, darkish lavatory is absolutely the WORST place to hold your clothes as much as dry. As an alternative, cling this tiny travel 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 travel towel will probably be dry very quickly.
  • Sand Repelling Beach Mat: I hate sand SO MUCH and this mat is made with magical sand-repelling qualities. If sand doesn’t make you need to go dwell in an igloo without end, 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 ideas and curvy-girl particular recommendations (ahem: do you might have chafe balm but??) head over to our beach vacation packing guide!

READ THIS POST

The 6 Best Swimsuits for Curves: Comfortable, Cute, and Field-Tested

Concerning the Writer: Richie Goff is a Louisville, Kentucky native with a terrific love of the outside. When he’s not rising flowers for enjoyable, he’s the Editor-in-Chief of Sensible Wanderlust and Let’s Go Louisville. He has been a buddy of Lia’s since highschool, and so they 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 under!

On the lookout for extra Florida inspiration? Try our different posts:

xo Lia & Jeremy signature graphic

FOLLOW US!


Psst – did you discover this put up informative? Helpful? Inspiring? Reserve it for afterward Pinterest! Observe: full-sized photographs could be discovered by clicking the Pin It button.

On the lookout for extra USA inspiration? We’ve got a MASSIVE journey information for all our favourite locations within the US and helpful recommendation, packing ideas and journey guides. Click on the hyperlink under to obtain!

Our High Journey Ideas & Sources

Listed below are our favourite journey ideas & assets for saving cash and planning journey logistics! For extra ideas, take a look at our travel tips resource page or our guide to planning a trip.

  • Reserving Flights: To attain flight offers, search on Google Flights or Kayak. Cash-saving ideas: 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 non-public rooms in hostels. We use Booking.com to e book accommodations (we love their versatile cancellation coverage) and Hostelworld to e book hostels (low deposit, simple change/cancellation, and glorious evaluations). 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 monitor report. You may also e book trip leases on Expedia and Hotels.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 counsel it – go to our Travel Insurance Guide to seek out out why. We advocate both World Nomads or SafetyWing for worldwide journey insurance coverage. SafetyWing is among the few insurance policies that covers Covid-19, and so they have glorious month-to-month insurance policies which can be 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 will we earn money again that we will spend on extra journey, however the card provides unbelievable journey perks like journey insurance coverage, journey delay and cancellation protection, misplaced baggage reimbursement, and rental automobile protection, which helps shield us on our travels. Learn more here.
  • Vaccines & Meds: We use the journey guides on the CDC website to analysis advisable medicines and vaccines for worldwide journeys. We all the time advocate getting each vaccine advisable by the CDC! You will 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 methods to get from place to position, and e book native transportation on-line utilizing Bookaway wherever we will. After we e book a rental automobile, we use Kayak to match rental corporations and discover the very best deal.
  • Baggage Storage: Every time we’re testing early or making the most of a protracted layover, we use LuggageHero to soundly retailer our baggage whereas we’re working 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 data, and so on) 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: Here are the travel essentials that we convey on each journey. We even have packing lists for hot weather, cold weather, and lots of extra. Check out all of our packing guides!





Source link