Planning a holiday to Florida can be as daunting as it is exciting, there’s so much to see and do and you might feel like you don’t know where to start, especially if you’ve not been before. I thought I would share some first timer ideas if you’re looking to visit the Sunshine State and some tips for making the most out of your trip to Florida.
Have an itinerary, but don’t expect to stick to it fully!
This isn’t the kind of holiday you can wing, there’s just too much to do! Try writing a bucket list of the things you don’t want to miss, and the rest allow some flexibility. Florida has a seemingly infinite list of exciting attractions and things to do. Have a look at Ocean Florida for help with planning your days to make sure you do everything you want to do during your time in Florida and then work out logistically what you want your holiday to look like, but remember you’ll never fit everything in so keep your bucket list achievable (or be prepared you’ll want to go back one day!) Importantly, allow for some rest time in between it all!
Making The Most Out Of Your Florida Vacation
Try all the food Florida has to offer!
It’s not all burgers and fries! Throughout the year there are several food festivals such as Seven Seas Food Festival at Sea World and Food and Wine at Epcot. If staying at a Disney resort why not book a character dining experience so you can enjoy your breakfast with Mickey & Minnie before you start your day!
Get to the beach.
Take some time out from the madness of the theme parks and head out to one of Florida’s stunning beaches. Daytona Beach, Home to the famous Daytona International Speedway, has 23 miles of beautiful white-sand where you’ll never run out of things to do. Take part in many activities such as golf, racing or one of the many festivals held throughout each year. Or head to Fort Lauderdale, the ‘Venice of America’, where you can enjoy peaceful gondola rides or spot a sea turtle or two along the shore.
Go for a stroll around Celebration.
Visit Celebration, built upon Walt Disney’s vision to develop his own community back in the 1950’s, the southern charm and style inspired by New Orleans, Savannah and Charlestown remains to this day – it’s easy to get to with a direct route via World Drive, to and from Celebration, making it a great little spot to enjoy an afternoon ice cream and stroll around the great lake.
Take a pushchair.
Even if your children are 7! There’s so much walking to be done and adding the heat to the mix they will more than likely need a rest during the day. Pushchairs are available to rent if you don’t want to take your own. These can be pre-booked and they even drop them off to your hotel!
Day 1 & 2 you’ll probably be up super early if you’re visiting from outside of the States (Hello, jet lag!) so get out and busy early then you can come back to the room/villa for a siesta/swim/cool down and be re-energised to start again in the afternoon. The heat will drain your energy too so don’t expect to be able to stay out the full day unless you are really hardcore!
Orlando is HOT – but restaurants can be cold with the air con so take a cover up to dinner.
It’s not all theme parks!
Orlando has a wealth of educational attractions for children, from Kennedy Space Centre to the Orlando Science Centre, which have in-depth experiences for all the family and make a great escape from the parks and the heat!
Take some US change for toll booths
It’s a great idea to have loose change and small bills for tolls and tips so you’re not wasting time while you’re there finding some.
Prepare for adventure
Have a look into some of the fantastic adventurous days you could participate in during your time in Florida. Discovery Cove offers several truly magical experiences of a lifetime such as ‘SeaVenture’, an underwater walking tour, which takes you through the coral reefs and habitats home to a load of sea-critters. Or go on a river kayak tour or ride an airboat at Boggy Creek, opportunities for wild adventures are endless in Florida!
Take a deep breath, relax and enjoy the moment of being where you are! I’d love to know your tips, leave me a comment down below and don’t forget to check out all of my other Disney and Florida posts for even more information to help make your holiday of a lifetime even more special!
This post was written in collaboration with Ocean Florida. All views are my own.