Florida has beautiful beaches and state parks, fun shopping, big farms, thrill-seeking amusement parks, and more. There’s something for everyone in the Sunshine State. Check out this list of 34 things to do in Florida to bring some variety (and savings) to your next vacation!
Things To Do In Florida
1. Snorkel And Scuba Dive At The Devil’s Den Spring
With a name formed from the smoky steam that rises from its chimney open, you can’t go wrong with a visit to the Devil’s Den Spring. Ancient rock formations and fossil beds dating more than 30 million years and crystal clear water give visitors memories that will last.
In a dark cave, this privately owned, stunning 120 feet wide underground sinkhole is located in Williston, Florida. It offers a unique experience to tourists who want to go snorkeling or scuba diving.
As one of the top things to do in Florida, the location offers lodging at 4 cabins, tent campgrounds, and an RV park. Tourists have access to picnic tables, grills, cabanas, lawn games, and a heated swimming pool.
Unfortunately, the den itself isn’t open to the general public. You need a reservation to go downstairs to see the spring.
2. Sight-see at Cedar Lakes Woods & Gardens
Located next to the Devil’s Den in Williston, Florida, tourists will find Cedar Lakes Woods & Gardens. This beautiful botanical garden offers more than 50 garden displays, waterfalls, koi ponds, and breathtaking views to enjoy. With festivals, shows, and concerts, there’s sure to be something to keep you entertained.
3. Camp At Ginnie Springs
Ginnie Springs offers camping for champions. With more than 200 Wooded acres and spring-side tent sites with full electric and water hookup, campers are set up with beautiful views and fun water activities from innertubes to kayaks and canoes. The site doesn’t disappoint if you’re looking to dive in its crystal clear, 72-degree freshwater,
4. Have Fun At Magic Kingdom
The Magic Kingdom is one of four Walt Disney-owned theme parks in Bay Lake near Orlando. Meet and greet your favorite Disney characters like Mickey Mouse, Goofy, Daisy, and more. Visit Cinderella’s Castle or enjoy a thrilling roller coaster. Have dinner with Belle and finish up the night with a stunning display of fireworks and immersive projections.
In fact, a day at Magic Kingdom offers tourists many things to do, ranging from entertainment, special events, and tours to themed dining experiences. There’s something for everyone of all ages. It’s easy to see why Walt Disney World is one of Florida’s most iconic landmarks and things to do.
5. Check Out Theme Parks At Universal Orlando
Movie lovers are guaranteed to love Universal Orlando with 3 theme parks: Universal Studios, Islands of Adventure, and Volcano Bay. Citywalk Orlando is the “Epicenter of Awesome,” with entertainment, shopping, and restaurants for everyone.
Harry Potter and Marvel fans are sure to be delighted with thrilling rides made just for them.
6. Visit Daytona International Speedway
Located in Dayton, Florida, Daytona International Speedway is more than a racetrack. The racing enthusiast is sure to enjoy seeing cars race around the 2.5-mile track. Still, the speedway is also home to concerts, civic and social gatherings, vehicle testing, police training, and car shows. Visitors are also sure to enjoy daily tours and the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America.
7. Learn Something New At Kennedy Space Center
There’s never been a better time to learn about space as we strive to understand our role on the planet earth and the evolution of man. And what better place to do it than the Kennedy Space Center located in Merritt Island, Florida. The Kennedy Space Center is one of 10 NASA field centers. It’s one of NASA’s main launch sites and home to several research facilities.
The complex features exhibits, historic spacecraft memorabilia, shows, and tours of the spaceport.
8. Get Closer To Nature and Animals At Naples Zoo
Naples Zoo is a nationally accredited zoo with more than a mile of beautiful animals within tropical gardens. You’ll find several of your favorite animals and a few rarer animals like a giant anteater and the fossa of Madagascar. The zoo has a large aquarium and botanical garden. There’s always something fun to do at Naples Zoo, with shows and events scattered throughout the year.
9. Stroll Through Naples Botanical Garden
The Naples Botanical Garden is a “170-acre, world-class garden paradise that features plants from around the world.” The garden represents the culture and flora of the tropics and has more than 220,000 visitors yearly.
10. Enjoy A Football Game Or Tour At The Raymond James Stadium
Who doesn’t love a little football? With their unexpected Superbowl LV win, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are a sight to be seen, and so is their stadium. You can’t beat the cheering, music, stadium hotdogs, and people.
But for those who don’t care for football, there’s the sightseeing experience of going to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ home stadium. Tours are given Monday through Thursday and some Fridays at 2 pm. Take a look at the playing field, locker room, suites, and the famous pirate ship.
11. Relish In Bok Tower Gardens
The Bok Tower Gardens is a national historical landmark with two hiking trails, 50 acres of gardens, art deco, a neo-Goth Singing Tower carillon. It is an awe-inspiring attraction in central Florida’s Lake Wales.
Spice up your summer with a display of pepper plants at the Bok Towers Gardens. A unique spicy stroll through a rainbow of edible and ornamental pepper plants gives insight into the vibrant world of these peppers.
12. Admire The Sunken Gardens In St. Petersburg
Sunken Gardens is a 100-year-old, 4.5 acre home to more than 50,000 tropical plants and flowers. It has cascading waterfalls and a flock of flamingos for visitors to admire.
13. Play At Busch Gardens
Busch Gardens is a 335-acre African-themed animal theme park located in Tampa, FL. Home to 200 species of animals, you can go behind the scenes with a tour of the safari. At Busch Gardens, you’ll find everything from festivals and animal exhibits to rides and roller coasters to keep you entertained.
14. Visit J.N. “Ding” Darling NWR
J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge is home to interactive exhibits on refuge ecosystems and birdlife. You can take three trails to explore the wildlife. Visitors may also find fishing, boating, biking, and photography opportunities during their time at the wildlife refuge. Tours are also provided.
15. Get To Know Ernest Hemingway
Visit the Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum in Key West, Florida, to walk the path of a legend and learn a little more about the famous writer. Take a tour of Hemingway’s home and see the photos of Hemingway’s fishing adventures. Tourists may have full access to his home and writing studio with the Hemingway Home Evening Writing Experience.
16. Melt Away Stress At The Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory
Relax and let your stress go while walking through a magical world of butterflies at the Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory. The tropical paradise is filled with hundreds of beautiful butterflies from 50 to 60 butterfly species worldwide. The conservatory is also home to 20 exotic bird species, cascading waterfalls, and trees.
Learn more about butterfly anatomy, physiology, and life cycle in the Learning Center and browse through the Gift Shop for a wide selection of artwork and unique gifts.
17. See The Florida Panther At The Everglades National Park
Only 45 miles southwest of Miami International Airport, the Everglades National Park in the United States’ largest subtropical park and wilderness. It is home to endangered species such as the American crocodile, Green turtle, and the Florida panther.
The park offers three campgrounds, lodging, boat and tram tours, biking, boating, and canoeing.
18. Swim At The Venetian Pool In Coral Gables, Florida
The Venetian Pool is more than just a pool. It’s a beautiful oasis that holds 820,000 gallons of water from artesian wells. You’ll see palm trees, coral rock formations, waterfalls, and caves to explore. It has a well-deserved place on the National Register of Historic Places.
It’s conveniently located near shopping at Miracle Mile, the Coral Gables Art Cinema, and the Coral Gables Museum to round out your vacation.
19. Parasail In Key Largo
Parasailing is a regulated sport in the state of Florida. So if parasailing is on your bucket list, you need to find a reputable place to go. Key Largo Parasail has you covered with a top safety record in the country. Parasail across 25 miles of fantastic views of Key Largo, the Atlantic Ocean, and John Pennekamp State Park for the thrill of a lifetime. Reservations are recommended.
20. Step Into The Past At Warm Minerals Springs Park
With an old Florida vibe, Warm Minerals Springs Park is located in North Port, Florida.
It’s believed that the land dates back to the Ice Age. The park earned its place on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places after they extracted several prehistoric creatures like saber-tooth tigers, giant sloths, and even camels from the land.
Rumor has it that the spring has a high mineral content and is known for its healing qualities. It provides visitors with therapeutic and passive activities.
With a year-round temperature of 85 degrees, you can relax in the water, explore the land, or enjoy spa services.
21. Go Back In Time At St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum
St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum transports you back in time more than 300 years to Jamaica during the Golden Age of Piracy. The 5000 square feet museum experience has been featured on the History Channel, the Today Show, CNN, and People Magazine. Visitors can see pirates such as Sir Francis Drake and Robert Searles, who played major roles in the history of pirates.
22. Capture The Essence Of Japan At Morikami Museum And Japanese Gardens
Capture the essence of Japan in Delray Beach, Florida, at this 16 acre-park of Japanese gardens and galleries. Learn more about Japan’s rich and diverse culture through art, exhibitions, and six historical gardens. With collections from private collectors and other institutions, the museum has a large collection of exhibitions throughout the year.
23. Appreciate History At The National Naval Aviation Museum
The National Naval Aviation Museum features a large state-of-the-art theatre, interactive exhibits, and a vast collection of aviation artifacts for visitors to see. Discover historic aircraft and learn more about the history of naval aviation at this historic site.
Call ahead as you may require an escort if you do not hold a Department of Defense Identification Card.
24. Be “Edu-tained” At WonderWorks
Located in Orlando, Florida, WonderWorks combines education and entertainment with 100 exhibits that challenge your mind and imagination. Experience extreme weather, wonderful art, physical challenges, space, and an imagination lab. So much for guests to enjoy at this family fun 35,000 square feet attraction.
25. Enjoy Miami Beach Nightlife
Miami Beach nightlife deserves a spot of its own. With nightclubs, salsa dancing, local food, rooftop bars, Miami Beach nightlife has a little something for everyone. You can check out performing arts in South Beach at the New World Center or relax on the beach. Just start walking or cruising along the beach to find something that suits you perfectly.
26. Discover Dry Tortugas National Park
The Dry Tortugas National Park is located in Homestead, Florida, 70 miles west of Key West. It is a 100 square mile park with seven small islands accessible by boat or seaplane. Less than 1% of the park is dry land. It is home to Fort Jefferson, a lighthouse, blue waters, coral reefs, marine life, and an assortment of birdlife. Visitors can go snorkeling and diving, boating, or swimming for wildlife viewing. Discover the history and culture of this national park for an unforgettable experience.
27. Experience Destin Harbor Boardwalk
Experience Destin Harbor Boardwalk in Destin, Florida. It has been named one of the Top 10 “most popular beaches in the United States.” Perhaps you want to swim in the ocean or relax on the beach. But you’ll find parasailing, jet skiing, boating adventures, snorkeling expeditions, dolphin cruises, and more. With beautiful clear water and white sand, it’s a sight to be seen.
28. Explore The Dalí Museum
The Dalí Museum is home to Salvador Dalí’s work and legacy. Salvador Dalí is a celebrated artist with unusual paintings, sculptures, and film and life-sized art explorations. His creativity was pure and boundless. Visit the Dalí museum to learn more about the people, places, and events that created Salvador Dalí.
29. Take The Ultimate Vacation To Legoland Florida Resort
Another top thing to do in Florida has to be taking the ultimate vacation to Legoland Florida Resort. This theme park, water park, and botanical garden are located in Orlando and Tampa. It’s a Lego-inspired interactive 150-acre theme park with over 50 rides, shows, and attractions. Its water park includes a wave pool, lazy river, body slides, and interactive water play structures.
Guests are invited to stay at the Pirate Island Hotel or Legoland Hotel with Lego-inspired dining and amenities.
30. Be Inspired At The Florida Museum Of Natural History
The Florida Museum of Natural History is located at the University of Florida campus in Gainesville. The museum inspires people to value the world’s rich and diverse biological and cultural heritage. Several hundreds of live butterflies worldwide live in the Butterfly Rainforest exhibit, and more than 40 million specimens and cultural artifacts are housed on the campus. The museum has a wide range of themes, with temporary exhibits changing throughout the year.
31. Visit Vizcaya Museum And Gardens
Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is the winter home of farming manufacturer James Deering. It is an example of an entrepreneur-built estate. It features a decorative art collection, a native forest, a mangrove shore, a historic village, and 10 acres of gardens. The museum and gardens preserve cultural and environmental resources to engage people and understand the past, present, and future.
32. Walk Through The Swimming Hall of Fame
Located in Ft. Lauderdale, the International Swimming Hall of Fame is the mecca showplace for swimming, diving, and Waterpolo. Here you will find the largest source of aquatic memorabilia and aquatic books, manuscripts, and literature. The complex has over 40 exhibits and illustrates the history of aquatic sports. The displays highlight great athletes and house Olympic medals, and more.
33. Tour Kampong
Take a self-guided tour of the Kampong in Coconut Grove, Florida. It is one of five National Tropical Botanical Gardens where you can marvel at fruit or flowering trees from the tropics, and by a dwarfed 80-year old baobab tree, or smell the prized fragrance of flowering plants. The Kampong has collections from Southeast Asia, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. It features 50 varieties of mango and exotic plants.
34. Visit Seaworld Orlando
Seaworld Orlando is more than an aquarium. It is an aquatic theme park filled with numerous exhibits and attractions. Connect with dolphins, snorkel with fish, and feed exotic birds. The team at Seaworld has rescued and rehabilitated more than 39,000 animals. There’s so much to learn at this aquatic paradise with thrilling rides and more.
So, there you have it…34 fun-filled, educational, and inspirational things to do in Florida. This list is sure to fit any budget or sinking fund with a little planning. It’s time to pack your bags and make a travel checklist because there’s nothing like a vacation to help you manage stress and enjoy life.
This post originally appeared on Savoteur.