Top 10 Must-Do Activities for 1st Time FL Visitors

Top 10 Must-Do Activities for 1st Time FL Visitors

Have you been dreaming of visiting sunny Florida? Florida is a popular vacation destination for many, with a lot of great places to visit. So how do you determine where you should go and what you should see as a first time Florida visitor? To make it easier for you here is a compiled list of 10 things first time Florida visitors should do and see.

1. Beaches: You can’t go to Florida without going to the beach. With so many beaches in Florida, it can be hard to pick which one to visit. All have their charms. The Atlantic Coast is the choice for anyone wanting to learn the art of shredding waves or collecting shells and sea glass. The Gulf Coast, however, is home to some the most gorgeous beaches, known as the Emerald coast for the beautiful color of its waters and the pure white sand and great fishing. Clearwater Beach, Fort Walton Beach and Siesta Beach are a few of many beaches that embody the spirit and beauty of the Sunshine State. Learn More

2. Boat Tours: Dolphin watching and scenic tours via boat are great ways to experience Florida. As the water is a major attraction you can relax in a boat or go the more sporty and adventurous route with deep sea fishing, old fashioned sailing or jet skies. Water sport tours in Fort Walton Beach offer a variety of options, including dolphin watching, sunset tours and private charters. Cattywampus on Okaloosa Island offers a wide variety of such tours to choose from. Take a beautiful sunset tour and take in all the scenery. Learn More

3. Lighthouses: The panhandle is home to some of the most history-rich lighthouses in Florida – Pensacola Lighthouse, Cape San Blas Lighthouse, St. Mark’s Lighthouse, and Saint Augustine Lighthouse, just to name a few. Take a tour of the coast’s lighthouses while enjoying the wonderful views and learn about their historical significance. Learn More

4. Wine and Dine: When in Florida, a must is to try the fresh local seafood paired with the local wines. Seafood is plentiful on the Gulf Coast, with hot spots including Stewby’s Seafood Shanty, (rated best restaruant via TripAdvisor), in Fort Walton Beach Florida. Or take a visit to Chautauqua Vineyard and Winery, one of Florida’s most beloved vineyards and wineries. It is definitely worth the trip to take a tour and enjoy a wine tasting. Learn More

5. Springs and State Parks: If crystal clear waters and manatees are more your speed, just visit one of Florida’s many springs. Three Sisters Springs in Crystal River is a great location to find, what the locals call, sea cows. Further north, you’ll find Edward Ball Wakulla Springs State Park – one of the largest springs in the world. Wakulla Springs is a National Natural Landmark, and the state park is also listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Most of these locations offer camping and other amenities. Learn More

6. Diving and Snorkeling: If you are feeling adventurous then you don’t want to miss out on the Florida Panhandle dive trail. For those that don’t have a diving license, there are many places to snorkel on the coasts of Florida as well. Experiencing Key West’s coral reefs from the point of view of one of its many ocean dwellers is definitely one for the bucket list. Learn More

7. Boardwalks: There’s something about a classic boardwalk that just has a cinematic feel. Okaloosa Boardwalk offers great food, shopping, nightlife and entertainment right on the beach. Take the time to unwind in the beach ambiance of rolling waves, kids playing in the sand, or the nearby volleyball players. And there’s no better place to watch the sunset with your significant other. Learn More

8. Caverns: Cater to the Indiana Jones inside of you. Florida Caverns State Park is one of the few state parks with dry caves and remains the only park in Florida to offer cave tours to the public. The Florida Caverns have dazzling formations of limestone stalactites, stalagmites, soda straws, flowstones and draperies. It is definitely a must see on your trip to Florida. (No crystal skulls to be found here.) Learn More

9. Wildlife: Florida is home to a variety of wildlife, large and small. Manatees, dolphins, sea turtles, manta rays, sharks, and gators are among Florida’s staples. The Emerald Coast Wildlife Refuge and the St. Mark’s National Wildlife Refuge are two places that devote their time to the conservation of these amazing creatures. Learn More

10. Museums: As the home of one of the oldest cities in the United States, Florida is full of historical and science museums for those interested in learning a few things on their trip. Follow Ponce De Leon’s steps at The Fountain of Youth Shrine in Saint Augustine, or track down the many landing spots of real pirates. Some of the top museums include the Museum of Florida History and the Emerald Coast Science Center at Fort Walton Beach. Learn More

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