"Florida is a large and spread..." Florida Transportation Tip by mikem
Florida Transportation: 78 reviews and 41 photos
Florida is a large and spread out state with many major airports, interstate highways and great state and local roads. You need to decide where you plan to go as a primary destination. In the northeast near the border of Georgia there are the cities of Jacksonville, St. Augustine and Daytona Beach. In the far west, you have Pensacola (nearest the state of Alabama and the town of Mobile) and Tallahassee. On the western Gulf Shore side going south, you have the Cities of Tampa, Sarasota and Ft. Myers. In the general north central part of the state is Orlando and Ocala is nearby. Going to the Atlantic coast side further south is West Palm Beach, Ft. Lauderdale and Miami. And of course going as far south as possible you end up in the Keys and Key West.
If you will fly into Florida, I would suggest using the cities of Jacksonville, Orlando, Pensacola, Tampa or Ft. Myers, and Miami as your primary entry points. Jackonsville is served by Southwest airlines which tends to keep the prices down from other parts of the US. Orlando has many different airlines serving it and can also have excellent fares. Pensacola is a great way to go to Alabama and further west along the Gulf Coast. Miami is good for trips to Key West, plus trips to the Carribean and cruises.
If your heading to Mickey's world, Orlando is your best bet.
For car or other motorized travel, Interstate 95 follows the Atlantic coast from Jackonsville southward to Miami. Interstate 75 goes south but on the western side of Florida, going along the Gulf Coast slightly past Ft. Myers and then cutting across the state to the east and ends up in Miami. Interstate 4 is the connector to get to Orlando and to go across the State (west to northeast) in the area of Tampa (on the west) to Daytona Beach (on the eastern shore). Interstate 10 goes west beginning near Jacksonville and passes the cities of Tallahassee and Pensacola on the way to Mobile Alabama.
All of the interstate highways provide easy access (but can be very busy at times with traffic from both tourists and truckers).
If you have time, I prefer using the state roads liike Hwy 301 from Jacksonville to Ocala and then on to Tampa. You can easily get to Orlando by taking the Florida turnpike. Another very pretty drive is State Highway 19 and then Hwy 17 that both travel pretty much north to south and Hwy 17 goes through the Ocala National Forest. You can start in Orlando area and travel generally northeast and end up near Jacksonville. This is a great drive if you are looking for hot springs and Manatee area's.
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