When we think of Florida, the first things which come to mind probably include theme parks and the bold, showy glamour of cities like Miami. However, the state, also known as “the sunshine state”, has abundant beautiful places to explore outdoors. Why not uplift your soul and discover nature on your trip to Florida?
Just a short hop from downtown Orlando this state park has miles of hiking trails and freshwater springs waiting for discovery.
The beautiful turquoise waters will make you long to swim, and the lush swampy vegetation around the river makes sure you feel thoroughly exotic.
Wekiwa Springs Park is a popular place for locals to spend a day escaping from the city.
You can rent canoes or kayaks at the park and explore the waterways. Or enjoy the festive family atmosphere at the pool fed by the cool spring water.
If you want to get away from it all, there are longer, peaceful hiking trails to enjoy. Despite the proximity to Orlando, the park has lots of wildlife and birds. In the quieter areas of the park, you might even catch a glimpse of a Florida Black bear.
Manatees are beautifully strange creatures that can usually be spotted slowly gliding along in Florida’s waters. They tend to hug the coastlines as well as venture up freshwater rivers. When the temperatures drop over winter, they head up rivers fed by spring water where the water temperature is that little bit warmer.
Manatees eat a colossal quantity of vegetation every day and can grow up to 13 feet (almost 4 meters) long.
Manatees have protected status in Florida due to their vulnerability. They get hit by boats, caught in nets, or suffer from loss of vegetation in their habitats, causing them stress and a struggle to find enough to eat. So there are rules about interacting with any Manatees you see. In general, the main thing is not to touch them. Simply observe and try to minimize disturbing them as much as possible.
There are lots of places you can see Manatees around Florida. Some areas offer experiences such as snorkeling with Manatees, while other sites have boat trips or viewing platforms.
TECO Manatee Viewing Center at Apollo Beach has an educational center and viewing platforms.
Three Sisters Spring at Crystal River is another popular place where you can see Manatees in large numbers. You can rent a canoe and paddle around while you look out for Manatees gliding slowly past.
Florida has a massive 1,350 miles (2,170 km) of coastline, and a lovely warm climate, which means only one thing. Beachtime!
Wherever you plan to visit in Florida, you can’t go home until you’ve visited at least one beach.
No matter the kind of beach-goer you are, you will find the perfect beach for you in Florida
There are beaches for wildlife lovers, such as those at Anastasia State Park. The coastal state park features pristine beaches, dunes, marshes, and maritime hammock – a habitat that features low forests of broadleaved evergreen trees.
If your beach kick is surfing, don’t miss a visit to Palm Beach’s Reef Road. Probably, Florida’s most famous surfing spot, which has breaks that can reach up to 4.6 meters (15 feet).
Again, there are plenty of choices for anyone who wants to do some snorkeling. But notable destinations for off-beach snorkeling (no boat required) include Destin on the ‘Emerald Coast’. Head to Henderson Beach State Park or Norriego Point for extraordinary experiences snorkeling in the crystal clear waters.
The Everglades in Florida has been listed as a World Heritage Site since 1979. The unique and vast site (1.5 million acres), made up of a web of different habitats, provides a home for many creatures.
Subtropical wetlands stretch for miles and miles. Along the coast, different habitats such as freshwater marshes, mangrove forests, saltwater marshes, tropical hardwood hammocks (no, not the kind you sleep in) all meet, creating crucial space for biodiversity.
If you remember the 2005 TV series Invasion, you won’t be alone in finding the damp, dripping, oozing environment a little bit creepy. But what an adventure to explore! Don’t worry, though there haven’t been any recent sightings of glowing creatures in the water. The scariest creatures you can expect to meet are the crocodiles and alligators. In fact, the Everglades is the only place in the world where both species live together.
You can access the Everglades from entrances to the park’s north, east, and south. Once you’re inside, you can enjoy a wide range of activities. There is something for everyone. Try camping, hiking, fishing, boat trips, birdwatching. Or, if you like getting your feet wet, try some slogging (wet hiking). Geocachers will love looking for caches in the park. If you want your kids (or you) to learn something along the way, try a Ranger-led program.
If you love islands, then an escape to Florida Key’s is an unmissable treat for your trip to Florida. You can easily spend the whole holiday in Florida keys, or why not make a weekend of it as part of an extended visit to the Sunshine State.
Once you’re on the islands, there are lots of uplifting and beautiful places to explore outdoors. You can visit the beaches, go on a boat trip, munch on delicious seafood, explore a national park, try scuba diving, swim with dolphins and or simply hang out in a hammock (yes, the kind you sit in this time).
Every island has a distinct character, and the very nature of island life connects you with the outdoors every step of the way.
Florida makes a beautiful, surprising, and quintessentially American destination. Alongside the developed glitz, glamour, and the ‘big’ pizzaz sits equally vast outdoor spaces with abundant wildlife and opportunities to get away from it all.
And the best thing about getting outdoors in Florida? You can make the most of the copious sunshine.
Book by: Sep 30th 2021
Book by: Sep 30th 2021
Travel Concierge Club
Beaches, City Breaks, Family, Spa & Wellness, Weddings and Honeymoon, Romantic, Luxury, All Inclusive, CruiseView Profile
9 night Triple Centre USA - New York, Chicago and San Francisco!
Discover the best of three USA cities on this amazing trip staying in New York, Chicago and San Francisco! ...
17th Jun 2022 - 27th Jun 2022
Bahrain and Dubai twin centre!
Explore two amazing Middle Eastern cities in one on this Bahrain and Dubai twin centre! ...
1st Oct 2021 - 12th Oct 2021