Summer, sun, sea and beach – all this and much more defines the US state of Florida, which is rightly known as the Sunshine State. Thanks to year-round summer temperatures, Florida is the ideal holiday destination. In terms of popularity among Americans, it comes just behind California.
Florida is located in the southeast of the USA and has a total area of approx. 170,000 m². It is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean to the east and the Gulf of Mexico to the west. Most of the people live in the coastal areas. The capital Tallahassee, together with Orlando, is one of the few exceptions to the cities that are inland.
In Florida, wild swampy landscapes and dreamy sandy beaches alternate with pulsating cities and historical places. A diverse range of amusement parks is also one of the attractions, such as the NASA spaceport at Cape Canaveral.
In the following we present you the most exciting tours, the most beautiful attractions and the best sights in Florida. See map of Florida on DigoPaul.
1. Miami and Miami Beach
There is always something going on in Miami, life is raging here. The city is also synonymous with Florida. Almost more famous than Miami itself is the Miami Beach district with its 16 kilometers of sandy beaches. Sports enthusiasts and sun worshipers get their money’s worth here.
See and be seen is the motto on Ocean Drive, the promenade parallel to the beach. Beautiful Art Deco houses can be seen in South Beach. The legendary nightlife in Miami and Miami Beach goes into the wee hours of the morning. Countless bars and clubs ensure a lot of variety.
2. Orlando and its theme parks
Orlando is one of the most visited cities in the United States. Thanks to the international airport, the city is very easy to reach. In addition to an imposing skyline of skyscrapers, the city center impresses with beautiful parks and green spaces.
Orlando became world famous because of its unbelievable density of different amusement parks.
Whether roller coasters, animal adventure worlds or small parks for the whole family, there is something for everyone and fun and thrills are guaranteed. But also many museums and cultural institutions are among the interesting sights. Orlando’s Downtown is known for its great shopping.
3. Sea World
A breathtaking combination of roller coasters and marine animals invites you in Sea World to literally immerse yourself in the fascinating world of the oceans. The orcas, the landmark of the amusement park, impress with jumps and daring feats in spectacular animal shows.
At the same time, there is a lot to learn about their habitat and their behavior. In Sea World you can get closer to these majestic animals than anywhere else. Exciting rides with speeds of up to 118 km / h through the water world provide the ultimate thrill.
4. Trip to the Everglades
Jungle-like swamps, dense mangrove forests, alligators and crocodiles – they are all the trademarks of the Everglades, the third largest national park in the USA. The name means “grass river” and refers to the very wide and very shallow river that forms the branched network of watercourses. This southern area of Florida is characterized by a particularly diverse flora and fauna. Rare and endangered animal species have found their habitat in the Everglades. Nature enthusiasts can penetrate the heart of this wild landscape with canoes or so-called propeller boats. Various entrances in the east, north and west of the park promise an intense visitor experience. The visitor centers provide interesting information and rent out canoes or campsites.
5. Florida Keys and Key West
The end of the world. At least that’s what you might get as if you were taking the 161 km long Oversea Highway to get to Key West. The city is located on the island of the same name, which is part of a chain of over 200 coral islands along the southern tip of Florida. Just driving is an experience. The road leads over up to 11 km long bridges over the sea and islands, always on the border between the Atlantic and the Gulf of Mexico. Key West is a lively little town that conveys a real zest for life with its cozy bars and cafés. Personalities such as John Audubon and Ernest Hemingway also found a home here for a time.
6. Fort Myers
You can still find it in Fort Myers, the original Florida. The city on the banks of the Caloosahatchee River enchants with its southern states villas and the nearby fine sandy beaches of Fort Myers Beach. The inventor Thomas Edison and his friend Henry Ford fell in love with the city and set up a winter residence and laboratories in Fort Myers. Today, her residence, along with other museums, is one of the most popular sights in the city. Fort Myers shows its romantic side on a boat tour on the river or into the Gulf of Mexico. The place is also an ideal starting point for excursions to the Everglades or the neighboring islands of Sanibel and Captiva.
7. Walt Disney World Resort
Shining eyes of children and adults reuniting with the heroes of their childhood – new dreams come true every day in the theme parks at Disney World Resort. The complex south of the center of Orlando is home to four different amusement parks, each of which in its own way takes visitors into a fantastic world.
Mickey, Donald and Co and the dreamy fairytale castle of Cinderella are waiting in the Magic Kingdom. New worlds can be discovered in the model city of Epcot. Disney’s Hollywood Studios allow you to take a look behind the scenes and in Disney’s Animal Kingdom, the animals are the stars.
8. Sanibel and Captiva Island
Those who want to escape the streams of tourists, want to drift and appreciate the tranquility, will find happiness on Sanibel and Captiva Island. The islands are located in the Gulf of Mexico and can be reached via a land bridge from Fort Myers. The islands themselves are traffic-calmed and the best way to get around is by bike. No building here can be higher than the tallest palm tree.
Sanibel and Captiva Island were a single large island at first but were separated in a hurricane. Both islands have long beaches with fine white sand that are ideal for romantic walks into the sunset. Shelling is a popular hobby of the islanders. The seashells washed up on the beach are collected and assembled into amazing works of art.
9. NASA Kennedy Space Center
Ever higher, ever further – NASA made space history in the last century. This can be experienced up close in the Visitor Complex of the Kennedy Space Center. The areas of the museum have been divided according to the individual space missions. Apollo, Gemini and the space shuttle generation should not be missing here. In the simulator of the “Shuttle Launch Experience”, visitors experience an almost real rocket launch on their own body.
The highlight of every visit is the bus ride through part of the immense spaceport on Merrit Island, which is normally closed to visitors. Possible exit points are the “Launch Schedule & Status Center”, not far from the rocket launch pad. Here is the countdown to the start. Between a moon landing and a meeting with real astronauts, the KSC offers an unforgettable insight into the vastness of space.
10. Amelia Island
Even though Amelia Island in northern Florida was voted one of the best island destinations in the world, its sandy beaches are often deserted and invite you to enchanting lonely walks along the Atlantic coast. Nature lovers and those looking for peace and quiet will get their money’s worth here as well as those interested in history.
After all, it is not without reason that the island is called the “island of the 8 flags”. Eight different states, including Spain, France and Mexico, temporarily owned the island and shaped its history. Today you dine here in the oldest inn and drink your beer in the oldest bar in Florida.