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No Place Like Home

It’s no secret that Central Florida is a headquarters for entertainment, sightseeing and magic—but there is so much more to explore throughout the state just a day trip away. 

Florida is famous for many things, enticing travelers from all over the world to traverse its varied destinations. From shore to shore, each area has its own culture and history, allowing one to feel excitement akin to a first-time tourist within their home state.

A location close enough to conquer Orlando’s theme parks is much-envied by out-of-town visitors, but locals may be looking to change it up. Just in time for the warmer months, you can start planning your summer vacation for your new favorite Sunshine State discovery. Family adventures, romantic getaways and natural wonders are waiting just around the corner.


South Florida: A Glamorous Getaway

Sparkling waters, a different fruit tree in every backyard and pink sunsets describe what many would call “paradise.” It is no wonder that Gianni Versace chose South Beach to reside in: His former mansion encapsulates the luxury of its surroundings with stunning architecture and design showcasing the multicultural influences that make Miami so unique.

Fort Lauderdale
With promenades and canals, Fort Lauderdale consists of bustling city life with a tranquil beach for an easily accessible retreat. The downtown area entertains with nightlife and shopping, but there are also activities to immerse yourself in nature with gardens, wildlife preserves and beaches. Keep an eye out for fascinating native birds, either in a sanctuary or out in the wild. After a busy day of sightseeing, your family can rest up for more at the centrally located Lago Mar Beach Resort & Club, which prioritizes hospitality and embraces a beach lifestyle.

Palm Beach
North along the coast lies Palm Beach, with a plethora of museums, art, mansions and high-end businesses. Strolling along the sparkling, beach-lined downtown area exemplifies the area’s characteristic sophistication. Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa occupies Riviera Beach and hosts conveniently located oceanfront vistas and a Tiki bar.

Vero Beach
South Florida encompasses both manmade and natural beauty, and a bit further north leads travelers to Vero Beach. The scenic location is known for its tropical plants and wildlife, and McKee Botanical Gardens transforms the local flora and fauna into an unforgettable experience. Hosting family-friendly events that inspire imagination, the garden offers a kinesthetic learning experience with a special focus on making it fun for kids.

Key West
The Keys epitomize the ultimate tropical vacation, less metropolitan but equally captivating. As the closest part of the state to Cuba, Key West is brimming with culture and history. Famously the home of novelist Ernest Hemingway, the shores, architecture and lush vegetation foster inspiration and exude artistry. Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden showcases a vast variety of the region’s plant and animal life in its awe-inspiring 15.2-acre preservation.


Central Atlantic Coast Florida: A Nostalgic Haven

Daytona Beach
Daytona Beach is a true classic, a quintessential, retro beach town with a quirky flair. Imagine strolling beaches with bright, colorful surf shops and diners, or playing games at an oceanfront arcade before enjoying ice cream on the boardwalk similar to a ‘50s beach movie.

While that scenario appeals to anyone seeking an idyllic beach trip, Daytona Beach is filled with niche appeal as well. From motorcycle and NASCAR enthusiasts to crime-history buffs, every visitor can discover an unforgettable site difficult to find anywhere else. Giant Recreation World’s Destination Daytona location, along with its two others, helps travelers fall in love with the journey. Through an RV, uncovering hidden gems comes naturally due to the exposure to the landscape and the ability to (quite literally) be in the driver’s seat for your vacation.

Palm Coast
A slight trip north of Daytona Beach presents Hammock Beach Golf Resort & Spa in Palm Coast, which allows both optimal relaxation and recreation—particularly world-class golfing. Palm Coast is known for its hiking, fishing and boating opportunities, as well. Participating in activities while connecting with nature culminates in a fulfilling experience that is both engaging and restful.


Gulf Coast: Activity-Packed Escapades

An urban beach city with a Riverwalk and a famous amusement park of its own, Tampa is full of thrills. Concerts and festivals are common occurrences and regularly scheduled. Whether go-karting or enjoying a cocktail at a rooftop bar, there is no shortage of fun—with new attractions and events popping up continuously.

Anna Maria Island
With pristine beaches spanning seven miles along the Gulf of Mexico, Anna Maria Island is both laid-back and brimming with excitement. Boat tours, dolphin sighting, snorkeling and searching for shells alongside oceanfront dining and vibrant shops give visitors a varied and fulfilling island escape. Of course, the Anna Maria Island Chamber of Commerce on Holmes Beach is available to assist with planning, which results in an optimal, personalized visit.

St. Petersburg
For anyone interested in any medium of the arts, St. Petersburg is a must-see destination. Alongside acclaimed beaches are multiple arts and entertainment districts, jam-packed with museums, shows and nightlife. If The (Salvador) Dalí Museum doesn’t instantly convince a person to travel here, the sight of westward neighboring St. Pete Beach resorts may.

St. Pete Beach
Within the resort city of St. Pete Beach, The Don CeSar functions as both an iconic landmark and a luxurious place to stay. The pink hotel on the beach is nothing less than a fairy-tale castle, picturesque at any time of day or night. Activity-seekers will rejoice at the nearby TradeWinds Island Resorts, which offers two different packages to accommodate either an “island adventure” or an “aquatic experience.”


North-Central Florida- Wildlife Voyage

Crystal River
Dubbed the “Manatee Capital of the World,” visitors will not only enjoy the presence of manatees, but also can swim with them. While the marine mammals are most commonly spotted in winter months, at least 100 remain throughout the spring and summer. Aquatics define Crystal River, and water recreation is a common pastime, like scalloping, swimming and kayaking—so long as they take place a safe distance from the manatees’ residence.

If a break from the beach is preferred, Gainesville offers an alternative perspective of Florida’s wildlife. The Florida Museum of Natural History provides education about the ecosystem’s present and past, with fossils and an exhibit of free-flying butterflies and birds. State parks, trails and reservoirs are popular for hiking and fishing, but Gainesville also has the charm of a college town. One such example of the combination of such versatile elements is the University of Florida’s Bat Houses with an approximate population of half a million bats.

A quaint, outdoor-driven location, Chiefland contains numerous farms, river tours and artisan flea markets. Manatee Springs State Park is a boardwalk-lined forest home to turtles, otters, bald eagles and more. The woodland atmosphere with an aquatic flair is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and there are plenty of up-close opportunities for jaw-dropping photography.


Greater Orlando: Ideal for Out-of-State Visitors’ Vacations

For a full-circle analysis of Florida’s wonders, one would be remiss to neglect mentioning the attractions in Central Floridians’ backyard. Visitors from out of state can arrive through the Orlando Sanford International Airport, central to Orlando, Cocoa Beach and Daytona Beach. Surrounded by palm trees, tourists will be immersed in the Florida climate the moment that they land.

Furthermore, Reunion Resort & Golf Club offers a residential experience, allowing non-locals to enjoy the luxury of peace and space in unique villas and vacation homes before hitting the range of famous amusement parks. And for Central Florida natives who want to tour the wonders of the world beyond the state—or outside of the country—conveniently located Windermere Travel can take the stress out of planning your trip.

Regardless of where you venture for your spring or summer vacation, there are countless resources to ensure it’s best for your relaxation, sightseeing or adventuring goals. An unforgettable summer begins at home, planning and discovering your newest bucket-list locations. Luckily, with Florida’s diverse offerings, an unforgettable experience is less than a day of travel away.


Orlando Sanford
International Airport
(407) 585-4000 |

Anna Maria Island
Chamber of Commerce
Holmes Beach
(800) 392-9975 |

Giant Recreation World
Winter Garden, Palm Bay & Ormond Beach
Winter Garden: (407) 573-1305
Palm Bay: (321) 541-2205
Ormond Beach: (386) 239-1110

Windermere Travel
(407) 648-9390 |






The Don CeSar
St. Pete Beach
(866) 227-2025 |

Hammock Beach Golf Resort & Spa
Palm Coast
(877) 586-0180 |

Lago Mar Beach Resort & Club
Fort Lauderdale
(954) 523-6511 |

TradeWinds Island Resorts
St. Pete Beach
Island Grand Beach Resort: (727) 367-6461
RumFish Beach Resort: (727) 360-5551

Palm Beach Marriott Singer Island Beach Resort & Spa
Riviera Beach
(561) 340-1700 |

Reunion Resort & Golf Club
(833) 258-0472 |


Key West Tropical Forest & Botanical Garden
Key West
(305) 296-1504

McKee Botanical Gardens
Vero Beach South
(772) 794-0601