TOP THINGS TO DO/VISIT IN FLORIDA

Florida, the southeastern most state in the US, is certainly not a dull place. It is one of the largest states in the US and is home to a wide variety of ethnicities and cultures. Situated between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean, Florida is famed for its amusement parks and offers the largest selection of zoos, aquariums, theme parks and other family attractions found in any of the US states.

Florida also has an abundance of museums, art galleries, restaurants of all kinds and historical sights to offer visitors but despite all of its man-made wonders, Florida is also a spectacular place for nature lovers. The immense subtropical wilderness of the Everglades and the many barrier reefs are perfect for wildlife lovers. The swamplands offer a once in a lifetime opportunity to get close to a wild gator and the many beaches provide a chance of witnessing a nesting sea turtle. Here is our varied list of the best things to do in Florida:

1. Everglades National Park

               @Paul Marcellini

Created in 1947 after petitioning environmentalists managed to convince the government that the area was something special, the Everglades is the second largest national park in the country, smaller only than Yellowstone.

It consists of 1.5 million acres of subtropical marshes and swamp. The river here flows from Lake Okeechobee and provides the prefect environment for wildlife such as otters, turtles, crocodiles and even panthers. The wet ecosystem in the park makes it great for wildlife spotting boat trips.

2. Walt Disney World

Walt Disney World

Walt Disney world is the most popular of all of Florida’s tourist attractions.The giant amusement park offers a sample of the Disney magic that is adored worldwide.Walt Disney World has something to offer adults as well as children and families.

Thrill rides such as the legendary Space mountain keep things interesting for grown-ups while kids have the chance to meet all their favourite Disney characters.

The interesting (and free) Fastpass Plus system allows guests to skip the queues on certain rides, which can be selected up to 30 days in advance.

3. Universal Studios

Harry Potter - Diagon Alley at Universal Studios Florida

Universal Studios in Orlando is a working film and TV studio as well as being one of the most popular amusement parks in the United States.

Commonly referred to as Universal Orlando, the park offers a wide range of rides and experiences influenced and themed based on the films released by Universal.

As well as a wide range of rides for all levels of adventurousness, the park hosts a huge selection of live entertainment, shopping and restaurants.

4. Kennedy Space Centre

Kennedy Space Center

The 140,000 acre Kennedy Space Centre has been the site for many of the most important space shuttle launches in American history.

Guests are offered a chance to save their legs by taking a bus around the vast complex and visiting various displays and exhibitions in the Kennedy Space Centre Visitor Centre.

The site is still one of the most important in the US and tickets are available for the viewing of certain rocket launches.

5. Busch Gardens Tampa

Busch Gardens Tampa

One of the most popular attractions in the Tampa area, Busch Gardens is a safari park offering visitors a chance to get up close and personal with a wide selection of exciting species.

The park is also home to some of the most renowned thrill rides in the US including SheiKra, a floorless roller-coaster with a 200 foot vertical drop.

6. Miami Beach

Image result for Miami Beach

Miami Beach is located on an island linked to mainland Florida by a series of bridges and is a must visit spot for any visitors to Miami.

The beach is famous for its picture perfect golden sand and art deco beachside buildings.

Running along the beach on Ocean Drive is a wide choice of restaurants and hotels which prove very popular with visitors.

7. Dry Tortugas National Park

Image result for Dry Tortugas National Park

Image result for Dry Tortugas National Park

Inaccessible by car, most visitors reach the island via a boat from Key West.

Dry Tortugas is home to the impressive and imposing structure of Fort Jefferson, which was built in the 1800s by the US Government.

The spectacular reef islands found within the park make it a great place for snorkeling and spending time on the beach.

9. Daytona 500

Daytona 500

The Daytona 500 race is legendary and is widely regarded as one of the most important in the Nascar cup series.

The race is held at Daytona National Speedway and marks the start of racing season in February.

Prior to the building of the Speedway in 1959, races were traditionally held on the sand of Daytona Beach.

10. Duval Street in Key West

Duval Street, Key West

Best known for its Caribbean charm and wonderfully restored old buildings, Duval Street is located at the end of the chain of Key West islands.

A simple walk down the street is free and a satisfying and memorable experience.

The atmosphere is always buzzing at the many restaurants and bars that line the street and there are also many interesting shops to be found on the street.