25 Best Places To Visit in Florida

Molly McGuigan Author's Bio

Florida is a state known for its incredible attractions and diverse landscapes. From world-renowned theme parks to stunning beaches and unique natural wonders like the Everglades, Florida offers a variety of options for visitors to explore and enjoy. With so much on offer, it can be hard to decide on the best places to visit in Florida.

There are so many must-see places in Florida. Having lived in the state for 13 years, I’ve had the opportunity to explore this beautiful place extensively. The list of things to do here is almost endless, but with some careful consideration, I’ve managed to narrow it down. One of the highlights of living in Florida is undoubtedly its world-famous beaches.

SEE ALSO: 15 Travel Tips for Florida (By a Local)
SEE ALSO: Best Packing List for Florida: 20 Must-Haves for the Perfect Trip

25 Best Places to Visit in Florida

With its vibrant cities, breathtaking beaches, and unique natural wonders, Florida offers something for everyone, nomatter when you visit. Having traveled extensively throughout the state, I’ve compiled a list of the 25 best places to visit in Florida, USA.

Whether you’re seeking relaxation, outdoor activities, or cultural experiences, this list of the 25 best places to visit in Florida will guide you on your journey through the Sunshine State.

SEE ALSO: 15 Travel Tips for Florida (By a Local)

1. Walt Disney World

Wonderful Magic Princess Castle at Fairy-Tale Park

One of the best places to visit in Florida with kids is Walt Disney World. Walt Disney World offers a wide array of attractions and entertainment options tailored specifically for children. From classic characters like Mickey Mouse and Cinderella to more recent favorites like Elsa and Buzz Lightyear, there’s something for everyone (young and old).

Walt Disney World is a truly exceptional destination for families with kids. The combination of attractions, safety, dining options, immersive environments, and lasting memories make it a perfect place for children to experience the magic of Disney. A visit to Walt Disney World is an experience that children will cherish and remember for years to come.

Location: 1375 East Buena Vista Drive Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
Getting There: If driving, use major highways such as Interstate 4 or the Florida Turnpike. For guests staying on the property, a transportation system is offered that includes buses, water taxis, a monorail, and a skyliner.
Things To Do: My top three recommendations are dining and drinking around the world in Epcot, shopping at Disney Springs, and meeting characters at Magic Kingdom.
Where to Stay: Walt Disney World Dolphin Hotel, located on Walt Disney World property, offers water taxi service to Disney’s Boardwalk, Epcot, and Hollywood Studios, as well as five pools, four hot tubs, and a health and wellness spa.
Entrance Fee: $179-$229 per day price for adults 10+

SEE ALSO: Where to Stay in Florida in (Best Areas and Places)

2. St. Augustine

Historic building built in 1887 in downtown St. Augustine, Florida.

St. Augustine is undeniably a hidden gem and is one of the best places to visit in Florida for those seeking a historical experience. Having personally visited this enchanting city before, I can attest to the captivating allure it holds for history enthusiasts and curious travelers alike.

As the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the United States, this charming city offers a glimpse into the past that’s both captivating and educational. Strolling through the narrow cobblestone streets, one cannot help but feel transported back in time, surrounded by centuries-old architecture and a sense of heritage.

Location: St. Augustine, Florida, USA
Getting There: The best way to get to St. Augustine is by car. Once you arrive in St. Augustine, one of the best ways to explore the city is by taking a trolley ride.
Things To Do: Visit Potter’s Wax Museum, home to over 160 sculptures of historic figures such as Princess Diana and Albert Einstein. It was the first wax museum to open in the United States.
Where to Stay: Stay in the heart of St. Augustine at the St. George Inn, ideally located within reach of the iconic Castillo De San Marcos.

3. Universal Studios

A person holding a Universal Studios Ticket with a lot of tourists walking in the background.

Universal Studios is one of the best tourist attractions in Florida. This theme park offers a wide range of exciting and immersive experiences that cater to visitors of all ages. One of the main draws of Universal Studios is its thrilling rides and attractions. From heart-pounding roller coasters to 3D simulators, there’s something to satisfy every adrenaline junkie.

In addition to its thrilling rides, Universal Studios is also known for its impressive live shows and entertainment. Visitors can catch captivating performances including stunt shows, musicals, and parades, featuring their favorite characters and beloved stories.

Location: 6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819
Getting There: Driving on Interstate 4 is one easy way to get to Universal Studios. However, I advise you to be aware that I-4 is notorious for its heavy traffic congestion.
Things To Do: My favorite thing to do at Universal Studios is hang out on Citywalk. I love to grab a bite to eat at the Hardrock Cafe. After eating, I love to listen to live music from one of the many bars in the area.
Where to Stay: Universal Lowe’s Royal Pacific Resort features 6 on-site restaurants and offers many park-related perks to its guests.
Entrance Fee: $110-$135 dollars per adult ticket

SEE ALSO: 10 Things To See and Do in Florida Besides Theme Parks

4. Sarasota

Going towards downtown Sarasota from the Ringling Bridge.

Sarasota is an excellent place to visit in Florida for couples. One of the main attractions is the beautiful Siesta Key Beach, known for its pristine white sand beaches. The powdery white sand is incredibly soft to walk on, which makes it my favorite beach to travel to.

In addition to its picturesque beaches and vibrant nightlife, Sarasota is an ideal destination for couples looking to escape and unwind. The city offers a range of luxury resorts, cute hotels, and cozy bed and breakfasts, catering to different preferences and budgets.

Location: Sarasota, Florida, USA
Getting There: The most convenient way to reach Sarasota is by car. Once you’ve arrived in Sarasota, take advantage of the excellent Siesta Key Breeze Trolley.
Things To Do: Consider taking the Osprey: Guided Dolphin and Manatee SUP or Kayaking Tour. This tour allows you to explore the mangroves while gliding on a stand-up paddleboard or kayaking. In addition to the incredible opportunity to see manatees in their natural environment, the tour also provides valuable insights into Sarasota’s history.
Where to Stay: Tropical Breeze Resort features 2 heated pools and an on-site spa. It’s the ideal place to return to after a busy day of exploring Sarasota.

5. Key West

Panoramic sunrise landscape view of the small Island Sunset Key and Wisteria Island of the Island of Key West, Florida Keys.

Key West is a fun place in Florida to visit for adults. With its unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty, Key West offers a ton of activities and attractions that are sure to appeal to all types of travelers.

One of the main draws of Key West is its stunning beaches. In addition to its beautiful stretches of sand, Key West is also famous for its nightlife. The lively Duval Street is lined with bars, restaurants, and clubs, offering a variety of entertainment options for adults.

Location: Key West, Florida 33040, USA
Getting There: The best way to reach Key West, Florida from mainland Florida is by taking a ferry. This method offers a scenic and enjoyable journey.
Things To Do: The Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum in Key West is an iconic spot that should not be missed during your visit. However, my favorite activity is taking a sunset tour. Key West is known for its breathtaking sunsets, and there’s nothing quite like experiencing it firsthand.
Where to Stay: Situated just 2.1 km from Smathers Beach, The Capitana Key West is a beautiful seafront property.

6. St. Pete Beach

A white sand beach with a tent near the shore, buildings on the side, and trees.

Another one of the best places to see in Florida is St. Pete Beach. One of the main attractions of this spot is its pristine coastline, stretching for miles along the Gulf of Mexico. Visitors can enjoy lounging on the soft sand, taking leisurely walks along the shore, or engaging in various water activities such as swimming, snorkeling, and jet skiing.

Apart from its natural beauty, St. Pete Beach is home to several establishments and attractions. The historic Corey Avenue district offers a charming shopping experience with its unique boutiques, art galleries, and specialty stores.

Location: St Pete Beach, Florida, USA
Getting There: The best way to get to St. Pete Beach is by vehicle. Whether you’re driving your own car or renting one, having a vehicle gives you the flexibility to explore the area at your own pace. St. Pete Beach is easily accessible by major highways, making it a convenient destination for road trips.
Things To Do: One of the most popular attractions in St. Pete Beach is to embark on a dolphin-watching tour. These tours provide a unique chance to observe these majestic creatures in their natural habitat. Visitors can witness dolphins playfully swimming alongside the boat.
Where to Stay: Since opening its doors in 1928, The Don Cesar has welcomed guests into its “Pink Palace”.

7. Celebration

A street with colorful buildings on both sides, coconut trees, and cars parked on the side street.

Celebration is a dream neighborhood for many, including myself. It’s probably the prettiest town in Florida. This charming community was master-planned by The Walt Disney Company. With its picturesque streets and beautiful homes, Celebration offers residents a truly magical place to call home.

One of the main attractions in Celebration is its charming downtown area, which is reminiscent of a classic American town. Here, visitors can stroll along the quaint streets lined with colorful buildings, browse through boutique shops, and enjoy a variety of dining options.

Location: Celebration, Florida 34747
Getting There: Celebration is easily accessible via major highways. If you’re coming from the north, you can take Interstate 4 and exit onto Celebration Avenue. From the south, you can take Florida’s Turnpike or Interstate 4 and follow the signs to Celebration.
Things To Do: When I visit Celebration I love to ride my bike. There are numerous bike paths and trails in the area. I also love to attend their seasonal events, art shows, and live music performances.
Where to Stay: Melia offers its guests a free shuttle to and from the major surrounding theme parks and water parks. Each suite features a kitchen, living room, and private balcony, making it a spacious and homely option for families.

8. Cocoa Beach

The Cocoa Beach Pier, the clear blue sea, and the clear sky.

Those looking to go sightseeing in Florida should visit Cocoa Beach. Whether you’re a nature lover, a thrill-seeker, or simply looking to unwind on pristine beaches, Cocoa Beach has something for everyone.

One of the top attractions in Cocoa Beach is the iconic Cocoa Beach Pier. Stretching 800 feet over the Atlantic Ocean, the pier offers breathtaking views and a variety of entertainment options. I enjoy strolling on the boardwalk and eating a meal at one of the many waterfront restaurants.

Location: Cocoa Beach, Florida 32931
Getting There: The best way to get around Cocoa Beach is by renting a car. With a car, you have the freedom and flexibility to explore all the attractions and hidden gems that this city has to offer.
Things To Do: Relax on the beach, take a surf lesson, or go for a kayak ride. I recommend going on a bioluminescence kayak tour – the water actually glows!
Where to Stay: Located just a 3-minute walk away from Cocoa Beach is Four Points by Sheraton, a hotel that boasts beach-style and surfing-inspired decorated rooms.

9. Lakeridge Winery

Grenache wine grapes ripen in a vineyard as they near harvest.

Lakeridge Winery, located in Clermont, Florida, is widely recognized as one of the top destinations for wine enthusiasts and tourists alike. With its picturesque vineyards, extensive wine selection, and rich history, Lakeridge Winery is one of the best places to visit in Florida.

Visitors to Lakeridge Winery can embark on a guided tour to learn about the winemaking process from vine to bottle. Knowledgeable guides lead guests through the vineyards, explaining the different grape varieties and cultivation techniques.

Location: 19239 US Hwy 27, Clermont, FL 34715
Getting There: The best way to get to Lakeridge Winery is by vehicle. However, it’s a good idea to take a rideshare service such as Uber and Lyft (since you’re given free samples of wine during the wine tour).
Things To Do: Partake in the Vinyard wine-tasting experience. Look out for various music events and festivals Lakeridge Winery holds throughout the year, check their site for more information.
Where to Stay: After a good night’s sleep, tuck into a buffet breakfast before heading out for the day at the Hampton Inn and Suites.
Entrance Fee: Free

10. Destin

Emerald waters of Miramar beach in Destin Florida, USA.

Destin is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Florida. It is a must-see destination for any traveler seeking a blend of natural beauty, outdoor activities, and relaxation. With pristine white sands and crystal-clear turquoise waters, the beaches here are picture-perfect.

In addition to its beaches, Destin is also renowned for its world-class fishing. Known as the “World’s Luckiest Fishing Village,” this city offers ample opportunities for both experienced anglers and novices to cast their lines and reel in the catch of a lifetime.

Location: Destin, Florida 32541
Getting There: The best way to get to Destin, Florida is by car. Several major highways connect to Destin, such as Highway 98 and Interstate 10, making it easily accessible from different parts of Florida and neighboring states.
Things To Do: While in Destin I like to visit the Destin Harbor Boardwalk. Destin is also home to several champion golf courses. However, my all-time favorite thing to do in Destin is to snorkel with the dolphins.
Where to Stay: Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort and Spa is located on Miramar Beach and features 6 on-site restaurants.

11. Daytona Beach

Daytona Beach in Florida Coastline. Buildings and amusement parks at a distance.

Daytona Beach is one of the best cities to visit in Florida. This city’s beach is perfect for sunbathing, picnicking, or simply taking a stroll along the shore. The warm, inviting waters of the Atlantic Ocean also offer plenty of opportunities for swimming, surfing, and other water sports.

For those seeking thrills and excitement, Daytona Beach is home to the famous Daytona International Speedway. This iconic race track hosts some of the most prestigious motorsport events in the world, including the Daytona 500.

Location: Daytona Beach, Florida
Getting There: If you prefer driving, Daytona Beach is well-connected to major highways. Interstate 95 runs along the eastern coast of Florida, and Interstate 4 connects Daytona Beach with Orlando and Tampa.
Things To Do: Known as the “World Center of Racing,” Daytona International Speedway is a must-visit for motorsports enthusiasts. Take a guided tour of the iconic race track, learn about the history of NASCAR, and even watch a thrilling race if you’re lucky. If you’re visiting in February, make sure you catch the Daytona 500.
Where to Stay: Daytona Grande Oceanfront Resort is a 4-star accommodation that offers a fitness center and outdoor swimming pool. Free parking is available to guests, making it ideal for those renting a car, or traveling with their own vehicle.

12. Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale, Florida, skyline over Barrier Island.

Fort Lauderdale is a must-see place in Florida. With its sunny weather, stunning coastline, and diverse range of activities, Fort Lauderdale offers something for everyone. Whether you prefer relaxing on a beach or engaging in water sports such as snorkeling or jet skiing, Fort Lauderdale’s beaches have it all.

In addition to its beaches, Fort Lauderdale is home to a vibrant cultural scene. I love the amount of art galleries and museums the city boasts, showcasing both local and international talent. For history enthusiasts, the Bonnet House Museum & Gardens offers a glimpse into Florida’s past with its preserved historic home and lush gardens.

Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA
Getting There: One of the most popular ways to get around Fort Lauderdale is by using the Broward County Transit bus system. The Broward County Transit operates a network of routes that cover various parts of the city, making it easy to reach different destinations.
Things To Do: Whenever I visit Fort Lauderdale I love to explore Las Olas Boulevard – a street lined with shops and restaurants. Another thing I enjoy doing when I am in Fort Lauderdale is going on an airboat ride in the Everglades.
Where to Stay: Hilton Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort is an award-winning flagship hotel that boasts beautiful ocean views from its residential-style suites.

13. Naples

Naples, Florida, USA town skyline on the water at dawn.

Naples is one of the best towns to visit in Florida. This city is known for its natural beauty and some popular places to visit include Naples Pier Beach, Vanderbilt Beach, and Delnor-Wiggins Pass State Park.

In addition to its natural beauty, Naples is also renowned for its golf courses. With over 90 golf courses in the area, it’s no surprise that Naples is often referred to as the “Golf Capital of the World”. Players of all skill levels can enjoy a round of golf on courses designed by some of the biggest names in the sport.

Location: Naples, Florida
Getting There: The best way to get to Naples, Florida, is by car. Naples is located on the Gulf of Mexico in Southwest Florida and can be easily accessed by various routes.
Things To Do: While in Naples, immerse yourself in the beautiful Naples Botanical Garden which features several themed gardens. Take a stroll down Fifth Avenue South, Naples’ premier shopping and dining district. Take a manatee sighting and wildlife boat tour.
Where to Stay: The Inn at Pelican Bay is a beautiful boutique hotel that offers incredible breakfasts and convenient transport to the nearby beach.

14. Miami

Aerial Miami Beach, clear water, buildings on white sand, and a blue tent near the shore.

Miami is one of the best cities in Florida. Known for its vibrant culture, stunning beaches, and thriving nightlife, Miami attracts millions of visitors each year. This city is renowned for its diverse cultural scene.

The city is a melting pot of different cultures, with a strong Latin American influence. This is reflected in the vibrant neighborhoods of Little Havana and Little Haiti, where you can immerse yourself in the rich heritage and traditions. I love experiencing the mixture of cuisines here; it’s a foodie’s dream destination.

Location: Miami, Florida, USA
Getting There: Amtrak operates several train routes that connect to Miami. The Silver Star and Silver Meteor routes both serve Miami, providing a scenic and comfortable way to travel. The Miami Amtrak station is located in downtown Miami, making it convenient for travelers arriving by train.
Things To Do: I recommend visiting South Beach, known for its stunning beaches and vibrant nightlife. Miami is also home to Little Havana where you can have some authentic Cuban cuisine, sip on a strong cafecito, and enjoy live music and dancing at one of the many local venues.
Where to Stay: If you’re looking for luxury, you’re sure to experience world-class service at Mayfair House Hotel and Garden.

15. Crystal River

Aerial Drone View of green trees and clear water of the river.

Crystal River is off the beaten track in Florida. The area is a charming destination that offers a variety of attractions for visitors. Located on the Gulf Coast, this scenic city is known for its crystal-clear springs, diverse wildlife, and laid-back atmosphere.

One of the main highlights of Crystal River is its abundance of natural springs. The city is home to the Crystal River National Wildlife Refuge, which is famous for its resident manatees. In addition to the springs, Crystal River is surrounded by beautiful nature preserves and state parks.

Location: Crystal River, Florida
Getting There: If you’re traveling from a nearby city or within the state of Florida, driving is often the most convenient option. Crystal River is located approximately 80 miles north of Tampa and can be accessed via US-19 or US-98.
Things To Do: Crystal River is known as the “Manatee Capital of the World” and offers a unique opportunity to swim with these gentle giants. Take a guided tour and get up close and personal with these amazing creatures in their natural habitat.
Where to Stay: If you’re planning to bring your clubs along, Plantation Resort on Crystal River features an impressive 27-hole championship golf course.

16. Legoland

A two-pirate musician character made in Lego.

Legoland Florida, located in Winter Haven, is a theme park that offers a unique and exciting experience for visitors of all ages. It’s home to a variety of attractions and entertainment options and is a must-visit destination for families and Lego enthusiasts alike.

My favorite part of Legoland Florida is its cleverly created collection of Lego-themed rides and attractions. The park boasts over fifty rides, including roller coasters, water rides, and interactive experiences. It’s an unforgettable day out in Florida.

Location: One Legoland Way, Winter Haven, FL, 33884
Getting There: The best way to get to Legoland Florida is by car. Since Legoland is located in Winter Haven, Florida, it can be easily accessed by driving on major highways such as Interstate 4 and State Road 540.
Things To Do: Beat the Florida heat by going to the Legoland Water Park located right next door to the theme park. Another thing to do in Legoland is to catch a show; there are various shows to watch if you get tired of riding the coasters such as the Pirate Cove Live Water Ski show.
Where to Stay: Legoland Florida Resort offers three themed accommodation options. Click here to find out more.
Entrance Fee: $119 per adult ticket if purchased at the front gate

17. Panama City Beach

A lot of huge buildings and green landscapes on the road. and a beachside view.

One of the best cities in Florida is Panama City Beach. Situated along the Gulf of Mexico, this coastal city offers visitors a range of attractions and activities to enjoy. The clear waters of the Gulf are perfect for water sports such as snorkeling, scuba diving, and jet skiing.

Nature lovers will appreciate the natural beauty found in and around Panama City Beach. St. Andrews State Park is a popular spot for hiking, birdwatching, and camping. The park’s pristine sand dunes and coastal dune lakes provide a unique ecosystem to explore.

Location: Panama City Beach, Florida
Getting There: The best way to travel to Panama City Beach is to drive. Many hotels in the area offer free parking, which is a convenient option for travelers; allowing you to park your car at your hotel and have peace of mind knowing your vehicle is safe and secure.
Things To Do: Panama City Beach is 27 miles long; take advantage of the space by sunbathing or building sandcastles. One thing that I recommend you do is go on a sunset catamaran cruise – you won’t regret it.
Where to Stay: Make use of the private beach area at Emerald Bay Escape and enjoy incredible sea views during your stay.

18. Anna Maria Island

Beautiful sunny day on a white beach Island, there are green trees and a tent near the shore.

Another of the best places to visit in Florida is Anna Maria Island. The island offers a wide range of activities for visitors to enjoy. You can spend your days sunbathing on the beach, swimming in the warm waters, or walking along the shoreline.

Anna Maria Island also boasts a charming and laid-back atmosphere. The island is known for its small-town feel; home to quaint shops, art galleries, and restaurants lining the streets. Whenever I visit Anna Maris Island I love to explore the local shops, browse through unique artwork, and dig into some fresh and delicious seafood.

Location: Anna Maria Island
Getting There: When I traveled to Anna Maria Island, I went by car. However, once I arrived, I embraced the charm and tranquility of the island by exploring it entirely on foot. All of the island’s main attractions are within walking distance.
Things To Do: Explore the beaches and historic sights like the Historic Anna Maria City Jail. Don’t miss a chance to eat some local cuisine and try the Island’s famous grouper sandwich.
Where to Stay: Anna Maria Beach Resort is a 5-star hotel that offers air-conditioned rooms and an outdoor pool to help you keep cool in the Florida heat.

19. Kissimmee

Aerial image of the Kissimmee River in Florida. A huge piece of green land with a river.

Kissimmee is by far one of the best places to visit in Florida. When people think of Kissimmee, Florida, the first thing that often comes to mind is its close proximity to world-famous theme parks. While it’s true that Kissimmee is conveniently located near popular attractions like Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando Resort, there’s so much more to this city than meets the eye.

Nature enthusiasts will be delighted to discover Kissimmee’s stunning landscapes and outdoor activities. With its abundance of lakes, Kissimmee is a paradise for boating, fishing, and other water-based adventures. It’s an outdoor lovers’ paradise, with plenty of hiking opportunities to discover.

Location: Kissimmee, Florida
Getting There: The most convenient way to reach Kissimmee is by flying into Orlando International Airport. From the airport, you can rent a car or take a shuttle service to Kissimmee, which is approximately 20 miles away. The drive usually takes around 30 minutes, depending on traffic conditions
Things To Do: One of the main things to do while staying in Kissimmee is to explore the theme parks in the area. You can even go on a shopping spree by visiting the Orlando Vineland Premium Outlets. Out of all the things to do in the area I think going for a night airboat tour through Boggy Creek is the best.
Where to Stay: Located within close proximity to Walt Disney World Resort, Embassy Suites by Hilton features all the amenities you’ll need for a comfortable stay.

20. Marco Island

Marco island beach ocean front building shoot at dusk, big reflection on wet sand.

Marco Island is a beautiful place to visit in Florida. For those who enjoy outdoor activities, Marco Island offers plenty of options. The island is home to several golf courses, where golf enthusiasts can tee off against a backdrop of lush greenery and scenic landscapes.

For history buffs, a visit to the Marco Island Historical Museum is a must. The museum showcases the rich history of the island, from its Native American roots to its development as a tourist destination. Overall, Marco Island is a paradise for those seeking sun, sand, and relaxation.

Location: Marco Island, Florida
Getting There: If you prefer to drive, Marco Island is easily accessible by car. From Miami, take the I-75 South and then take exit 101 towards Naples. The drive from Miami takes approximately 2 hours, depending on traffic conditions
Things To Do: When I visited Marco Island I took a shelling and sightseeing tour. On this tour you’ll cruise through the 10,000 Islands, made up entirely of mangrove trees – I highly recommend adding this to your Florida itinerary.
Where to Stay: Marco Beach Ocean Suites offers beachfront accommodation with its own private beach area and a relaxing garden space.

21. Cape Canaveral

Cape Canaveral, USA. The aerial view of Port Canaveral, huge parking lot, and sea in the distance.

You can find many great Florida tourist attractions in Cape Canaveral. Known for its rich history and close proximity to Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral is a popular spot for both history enthusiasts and space lovers.

The city also offers a range of dining options, from casual beachside eateries to fine dining establishments. Visitors can savor fresh seafood, international cuisine, and local delicacies while enjoying views of the ocean or riverfront. I love the surf ‘n’ turf options from Sage Bistro – head here for the freshest ingredients.

Location: Cape Canaveral, Florida
Getting There: The best way to get around Cape Canaveral is by renting a car. With a car, you will have the freedom to explore the area at your own pace and visit all the attractions that interest you. The city covers a relatively small area, so driving around is the most convenient, and easiest, way to get around.
Things To Do: As the home of NASA’s launch operations, the Kennedy Space Center is a must-visit for space enthusiasts. You can even get up close with native wildlife, including alligators, turtles, and various bird species on an airboat ride.
Where to Stay: Start your day with a continental breakfast and get ready to explore the area from the Hampton Inn and Suites.

22. Mount Dora

The lighthouse at Mount Dora a trees and two benches facing the sea.

Mount Dora is a charming city located in Lake County. Nestled on the shores of Lake Dora, the city offers breathtaking views and a tranquil atmosphere. The downtown area is best known for its quaint shops, antique stores, and art galleries, making it a haven for art enthusiasts and collectors.

Mount Dora is also home to a vibrant arts and cultural scene. The city hosts numerous festivals and events throughout the year, including the Mount Dora Arts Festival, which showcases the talents of local and national artists.

Location: Mount Dora, Florida
Getting There: If you’re traveling from within Florida or the surrounding states, driving to Mount Dora is convenient. The city is accessible via several major highways, including US-441, FL-46, and FL-429.
Things To Do: Whenever I visit Mount Dora I love to explore the downtown area. All of the shops in downtown Mount Dora are so unique. There are several restaurants and cafes in the area you should try as well; don’t miss out on The Frog and Monkey Pub – they serve the BEST burgers.
Where to Stay: Heron Cay Lakeview Bed and Breakfast is a beautiful B&B that’s set amongst luscious grounds. Accommodation options feature either a patio or terrace; perfect for morning coffee.

23. Tampa

Tampa, Florida, USA downtown skyline on the bay

Tampa City is one of the highlights of Florida. One of the main draws of Tampa is its beautiful waterfront. The city is situated on Tampa Bay, offering breathtaking views and a variety of outdoor activities. Visitors can explore the famous Riverwalk, a scenic pathway that spans 2.4 miles along the Hillsborough River.

Sports enthusiasts will be delighted to know that Tampa is home to some major professional sports teams. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers, winners of Super Bowl LV, represent the city in the National Football League. The Tampa Bay Lightning, the local ice hockey team, has won multiple Stanley Cup championships

Location: Tampa, Florida, USA
Getting There: Tampa offers a reliable public transportation system that includes buses, streetcars, and a downtown trolley. The Hillsborough Area Regional Transit Authority operates the bus network, which covers a wide area of the city and its suburbs. The Streetcar System connects downtown Tampa with the historic Ybor City neighborhood,
Things To Do: If you’re a fan of art and culture, the Tampa Museum of Art is a must-visit. However, I think the best way to see the city is through a guided tour in deluxe golf carts.
Where to Stay: Situated just 1.8 km from Ben T Davis Beach, The Current Hotel is a great choice.

24. Madeira Beach

The beautiful natural landscape on the Madeira coast.

Madeira Beach is a must-visit when in Florida. One of the main attractions of Madeira Beach is John’s Pass Village and Boardwalk. This lively waterfront area features a variety of shops, restaurants, and entertainment options. I love spending an evening here, there’s always something entertaining going on.

Fishing enthusiasts will find Madeira Beach to be a haven for their favorite pastime. Charter boats are available for hire, offering guided trips to the best fishing spots in the Gulf of Mexico.

Location: Madeira Beach, Florida
Getting There: If you’re driving to Madeira Beach, there are several highways and routes you can take depending on your starting location. From Tampa, you can take Interstate 275 South and then exit onto FL-694 West/Gandy Boulevard, which will lead you straight to Madeira Beach
Things To Do: When I visited Madeira Beach I took a guided dolphin-watching eco-friendly cruise. I had the chance to get up close and personal with the dolphins as the boat cruised throughout Boca Ciega Bay.
Where to Stay: Barefoot Beach Club is named appropriately. Located just steps away from the sea, this beachfront property is ideal for those wishing to make the most of the surrounding area.

25. Homosassa

Landscape. Beautiful view by the Homosassa beach, with spring water in the front view.

For those who enjoy outdoor activities, Homosassa is a paradise. The nearby Homosassa River is perfect for boating, kayaking, and fishing. Fishermen can try their luck at catching redfish, snook, and trout, while nature enthusiasts can explore the scenic surroundings and spot various wildlife along the riverbanks.

If you’re a history buff, make sure to visit the Yulee Sugar Mill Ruins Historic State Park. These ruins are all that remain of an 1850s sugar plantation and provide a glimpse into Florida’s past. Take a self-guided tour and learn about the history of the sugar industry in the area.

Location: Homosassa, Florida
Getting There: If you prefer driving, Homosassa is easily accessible by car. The town is located along U.S. Highway 19, which runs north-south through Florida. Depending on your starting point, you can take Interstate 75 or Interstate 95 and then connect to U.S. Highway 19.
Things To Do: Homosassa is a must-visit for nature lovers. I recommend taking a guided tour down the Homosassa River where you will have the opportunity to see manatees, dolphins, and a variety of bird species.
Where to Stay: Riverfront Treetop Bungalow offers a unique stay, access to a terrace, and an on-site restaurant. This one-bedroom lodge is ideal for those who enjoy being closer to nature while enjoying the conveniences of a hotel.

Getting Around Florida

Person Signing Contract for Rent with car key and small car toy on the top.

Renting a car is one of the most popular ways to explore Florida. The state offers an extensive road network, making navigation easy. Renting a car provides the flexibility to set your own itinerary and explore both popular tourist destinations and hidden gems.

Florida has several public transportation systems that can be a convenient and cost-effective option for getting around. Major cities like Miami, Orlando, and Tampa have bus routes, including express ones that connect popular attractions and neighborhoods.

Given Florida’s abundant coastline and numerous islands, ferries and water taxis provide an alternative way to travel and explore the state’s coastal regions. From the Florida Keys to the Gulf Coast, these water transportation options offer scenic views and a unique travel experience

For more information on Florida transportation, check out this post: Best Florida Transportation Options (By a Local).

Quick Itineraries for Florida

As a seasoned traveler who has lived and explored Florida, I’m well-equipped to guide you in creating the perfect itinerary for your upcoming trip. From beaches to theme parks, Florida offers a diverse range of experiences that cater to every traveler’s preferences.

3 Days in Florida

If you’re planning on taking a three-day trip to Florida, I recommend spending that time in the Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral area. With three days, you can enjoy the beaches, explore the Kennedy Space Center, and eat on the pier before heading back home.

One Week in Florida

For a one-week trip to Florida, I recommend spending time visiting two of the state’s most popular attractions: Walt Disney World and Universal Studios. To make the most of your visit, I suggest allocating four days to explore Disney and the remaining days to enjoy Universal.

Since Walt Disney World consists of four main theme parks, I would dedicate one day to each park. This will allow you to fully immerse yourself in the magical experience that each park offers.

After your Disney adventure, I recommend renting a car and driving to Universal Studios. Universal Orlando Resort features two main theme parks: Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure.

10+ Days in Florida

For anyone visiting Florida for ten days, a must-visit itinerary includes exploring Miami and Key West. During the first five days, I recommend spending time in Miami, specifically in South Beach and Little Havana.

After exploring Miami, it’s time to head to Key West. Taking the ferry is a convenient and enjoyable way to reach this island. Once in Key West, you can relax and unwind, enjoying the laid-back island lifestyle.

Indulge in refreshing margaritas, a local favorite, while marveling at breathtaking sunsets. And don’t forget to try conch fritters, a delicious appetizer made from local conch meat.

With the remaining days of your trip, you can explore the charming streets of Key West, visit historical sites like the Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum, or take a snorkeling trip to the famous coral reefs.

Best Places to See in Florida: FAQs

Here are some answers to the most frequently asked questions about the best places to see in Florida:

Where is Florida?

Florida is in the southeastern region of the United States.

Is Florida worth visiting?

Yes, Florida is worth visiting there is so much to do from the theme parks in Central Florida to the beautiful beaches on the coast.

What is the most popular place to visit in Florida?

Walt Disney World is the most popular place to visit in Florida.

When is the best time to visit Florida?

The best time to visit Florida is between November and April.

What is the prettiest part of Florida?

Key West is the prettiest part of Florida.

Where should I base myself in Florida?

St Pete Beach is a popular home base for first-time visitors to Florida.

What is Florida famous for?

Florida is famous for its theme parks and beaches.

Is Florida safe to visit?

Florida is generally considered a safe place to travel. As with any destination you travel to, apply common sense, avoid walking with high volumes of cash, and don’t flash valuables when unnecessary.

What side of Florida is best to visit?

The Atlantic coast offers a lot in the way of water sports because of the waves. However, the Gulf of Mexico side is the best to visit because it is known for its crystal clear water and white sand beaches.

Which part of Florida has the most to do?

Central Florida has the most to do because of all the theme parks in the area.

Is it worth going to Key West?

Yes, it is worth going to Key West because they have the most beautiful sunsets.

What part of Florida is the most fun?

Central Florida is the most fun to visit because of the theme parks.

What part of Florida is the most expensive?

Tampa is the most expensive city to live in Florida.

In Conclusion

Careful planning is key to making the most of your upcoming trip to Florida. By considering your interests, researching the various attractions and activities, and organizing your itinerary accordingly, you can ensure a memorable and fulfilling experience in the Sunshine State.

Molly McGuigan Author's Bio

Written by

Molly McGuigan

Molly Robichaux, a native of New York, made a life-changing decision in 2010 when she moved to Orlando, Florida to participate in the Disney College Program. Little did she know that this move would shape her future in ways she couldn't have imagined.

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