Wild and Free

S&W Florida vacation must see things from FL Natives?

6 posts in this topic

My wife and I are headed to south west Florida in a few weeks for a week long get away. As the title says we are looking for advice from natives on must see things, we prefer non city non typical tourist attractions, more so into natural attractions/activities, we never go with plans we like to wing it as we go, after 15+ years of criss crossing the country it has never left us with a bad vacation yet. We are flying into Orlando and renting a car there. The only thing my wife wants to see is Busch Gardens the first day in Tampa from there we are planning to head south along the gulf coast and drive the whole Key highway and back to Orlando.

So to you Florida natives we ask what your list of must see things would be in the area we are going to cover over a weeks travels?

We want to give Florida another chance, we were there in February 3 years ago and were very disappointed, left ND at mid 30's, arrive in Orlando with mid 30's temps there too, 5 days there the first day we saw over 60 was the day we left it finally hit 70 and then rained, we drove to a relatives house on the beach in New Smyrna beach and went to Daytona and down to Cocoa beach and a couple days at Kennedy space center.

Edited by Wild and Free

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Only been to Fl once so I can't be of much help on what to see but, If I was ever in the area one of my must see's is the Marjorie Rawlins home in N central Fl which is now a state park, but is not in the portion of the state where you are going.

Don't know if you know any thing about Ms Rawlins and her life in Fl but she is the author of The Yearling. They made a great movie about her life in Fl several decades ago titled Cross Creek. Movie was up for numerous awards. It's on my Best Movies list. Here is some info on Ms Rawlins.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marjorie_Kinnan_Rawlings

http://www.floridastateparks.org/marjoriekinnanrawlings/

Whereever you go and what ever you do while there, hope yo have a great time.

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Not a native, but lived in Orlando for 18 years. I liked Weeki Watchee, live mermaid show and a raptor show, west of Orlando at the end of State Hwy 50; Tarpon Springs, center of the sponge fishing industry (north of Tampa on US 19); any number of gardens (for example, see http://www.leugardens.org/plan/floridagardens.htm); Museum of Science and Industry, Tampa; The Florida Aquarium, Tampa; and Cypress Gardens, Winter Haven. Lots to do and see in Orlando, Tampa, and all of Florida. If you are a member of AAA, be sure to ask for member discounts, and do some research in the Florida tour book.

The weather gets hot and muggy about the first of June, potentially a rainstorm every afternoon. You won't have to worry about being cold! Air conditioning is your friend in Florida.

Have a good trip, and have fun!

Fred

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Just got home and it was a great time! First day left Orlando headed to Coco beach ate on the end of the pier and then down to spend the first night at Fort Pierce.

Second day headed south on A1A and stopped off for a bit to walk the beach at Boca Raton then headed to Key Largo for the second night, ate at Glass floored restaurant/bar called the Pilot house and marina. stayed the night at a beachfront hotel there and sat on the water front deck and enjoyed the lightening show.

Next day off to Key West for 2 days, Blue Heaven was mentioned from my pontoon forum from several members ate breakfast there and liked it so much we had dinner there too the same day and a 3rd time just for another piece of the best key Lime pie in the world!!!! Stayed at a very nice B&B called La Pensione Inn there and went on a Fury Rum and Regea catamaran boat ride to a corral reef for snorkeling and Rum drinks for the ride back, best Bang for the buck while on Key West!

Next day back up the keys towards The Ever Glades and it rained most of the way through the glades so we skipped the airboat ride and headed to Sanibel island and stayed the night at Island Inn and went shelling in the huge waves on the beach for a while the next day did it again and then did the guided Kayak tour through the Mangroves at Ding Darling NWR and went through the NWR info station but the road through the park is closed for the summer for repaving. Ate at the Island Cow and Island Pizza there both were good.

Next night stayed at the Marriot on the mainland side of Sanibel with a top floor room overlooking the bay and towards Sanibel and again enjoyed the lightning and rain showers.

Next day headed north on 41 and stopped for a walk on Venice Beach and on up to Tampa and on to Orlando for the last night at Universal City Walk eating at Margaritaville and early to bed to catch the early flight back home.

Both myself and my better half definitely liked the SW gulf coast area the best and My wife especially loved Sanibel Island and wants to go back to that area again.

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Just got home and it was a great time! First day left Orlando headed to Coco beach ate on the end of the pier and then down to spend the first night at Fort Pierce.

Second day headed south on A1A and stopped off for a bit to walk the beach at Boca Raton then headed to Key Largo for the second night, ate at Glass floored restaurant/bar called the Pilot house and marina. stayed the night at a beachfront hotel there and sat on the water front deck and enjoyed the lightening show.

Next day off to Key West for 2 days, Blue Heaven was mentioned from my pontoon forum from several members ate breakfast there and liked it so much we had dinner there too the same day and a 3rd time just for another piece of the best key Lime pie in the world!!!! Stayed at a very nice B&B called La Pensione Inn there and went on a Fury Rum and Regea catamaran boat ride to a corral reef for snorkeling and Rum drinks for the ride back, best Bang for the buck while on Key West!

Next day back up the keys towards The Ever Glades and it rained most of the way through the glades so we skipped the airboat ride and headed to Sanibel island and stayed the night at Island Inn and went shelling in the huge waves on the beach for a while the next day did it again and then did the guided Kayak tour through the Mangroves at Ding Darling NWR and went through the NWR info station but the road through the park is closed for the summer for repaving. Ate at the Island Cow and Island Pizza there both were good.

Next night stayed at the Marriot on the mainland side of Sanibel with a top floor room overlooking the bay and towards Sanibel and again enjoyed the lightning and rain showers.

Next day headed north on 41 and stopped for a walk on Venice Beach and on up to Tampa and on to Orlando for the last night at Universal City Walk eating at Margaritaville and early to bed to catch the early flight back home.

Both myself and my better half definitely liked the SW gulf coast area the best and My wife especially loved Sanibel Island and wants to go back to that area again.

Where's the pictures? We want pictures. :D

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