Florida Things to Do Tips by Florida999
Florida Things to Do: 495 reviews and 675 photos
Absolutely beautiful place ! We went camping there at the end of October. Too early for manatees ( they don't get to these springs until usually December, when it gets colder) but we saw tons of other wildlife, deer, racoons, armadillos, eagles, buzzards, Elvis the snake ( park ranger told us, that was his name)
You can rent canoes and kayaks and go up or down the Suwannee River.
NOTE: Cypress Gardens is no longer in business..but I enjoyed the concert so much I am going to leave the tip as a memory....
This theme park is relatively unknown compared to the rest of the Central Florida parks, but worth the admission , if you go there to see a concert. We went to see Third Day and spent the entire day there. It is not quite Disney, but there are lots of different things to do. They have a water park with a wave pool and some slides. Again, not quite Disney standards, but ok, if you don't mind the slighly run-down quality of the place. The rides were ok too, but more like fair rides than theme park rides. Don't expect looping roller coasters...
My favorite thing was of course the concert we went for.
We went there during a tropical storm and it was very windy, so some of the shows and rides did not operate. There is a water ski show, but we didn't see it. The gardens are really nice too. We didn't spend much time there, but walked through to eat lunch at the country style buffet restaurant. The restaurant reminded me of a Cracker Barrel. You can eat it, but barely....other than that we had a great time there. But, I prefer Islands of Adventure....
Directions: Near Winter Haven, FLorida
The beach in St. Pete is nice, but personally I prefer the crashing waves of the Atlantic. But, if you want to go snorkeling, or do any other type of watersports, this is probably a great place.
There is a small county park right at the beach where you can park at, with showers, if you are not staying at a beach resort.
FSU Football Stadium
The State Capitol. You can go visit Florida State University, and go to a Seminoles football game.
Tarpon Springs is a Greek fishing village located about an hour north of St. Petersburg on the Gulf Coast. They fish for sponges, and you can go on boat tours. We've never actually gone on a tour, but have seen the boats arrive at the dock, and leave. Mostly we just go there to eat Greek food, especially the deserts, and walk through the many shops. It's a unique place worth a visit.
Directions: North of Clearwater on the Gulf Coast
The springs are my favorite springs in Florida. They are located just north west of High Springs, near Gainesville.
You can rent the tubes or small inflatable boats in the area on S.R. 27 before you get there. They do not rent them in the State Park.
Or, you can swim down the springs. Be warned!! The shortest distance to swim takes about half on hour. The water is too deep to stand up in most areas, and there are gators and snakes in the bushes and cypress trees at the shoreline. So, the only rest you will get is if you find a log in the river to stand on. We swam one time, and had tubes the second time. If you swim, just start at the south entrance, take the free shuttle to the Midpoint and swim down. For a longer trip on a tube, you can keep going past that to the area where they will pick you up. Or , you can go to the north entrance and float all the way. This would be very cold!! The water is cold all year long, and unless it is very hot out ( we went last when it was about 98 degrees outside) it doesn't feel comfortable for too long.
The river is really beautiful and you get to see the "real" Florida far removed from tourists and theme parks.
Florida has a lot of great State Parks, local parks and forests to hike in and look at the wildlife.
One of them is the Little Big Econ State Forest near Oviedo. There is a trail along the river that is also used by bikes. You often see gators at the edge of the river.
Directions: Near Oviedo Florida, when you go towards Geneva ( if you need detailed directions, email me)
Fort-Castillo de San Marcos
St. Augustine is the oldest city in Florida and one of my favorite places to visit. There is an old Spanish Fort ( Castillo de San Marcos) , the Old Town, Flagler College, several beautiful old churches, and lots of unique little shops.
The Fort is interesting, but really doesn't take that much time. You can see the entire thing in no more than an hour. I would suggest to start the rest of your sightseeing at the Flagler college. Once you get to Old Town, you will most likely spend entirely too much time going in and out of all the little stores....
The college used to be a hotel and the architecture is interesting looking. After the college , take a look at the Basilica, it is a beautiful old church and we always go light a candle in it.
There is a small Greek Orthodox church you might like to take a look at also.
This time , we visited the Colonial Spanish Quarter museum for the first time. It was interesting, they had a carpenter shop, a blacksmith, a boot maker, and a candle maker / herbalist. There are a few more, but they were not open because of the holiday. At $13 per family, it is worth the visit. The kids enjoyed watching people make things like they did a few hundred years ago.
The shops: my favorite is the weapons store, with all kinds of swords and stuff, but there are some other really cool ones, like a magic store, and of course, many souvenir shops with lighthouses...
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