Winter Vacations: Florida

Florida – free of colder weather

Florida has the mildest winters in the Continental United States. Average temps range from 64 degree to 77 degrees daytime. This is a good destination for getting away from the snow and being able to enjoy outdoor activities

Snorkel With Manatees – During the winter months, manatees flock to Crystal River seeking warm water refuge before the water temperature drops too low in other areas. The 57-acre wetland refuge that surrounds Three Sisters Springs, along with its scenic boardwalk, see hundreds of manatees during the winter, and visitors are able to swim, snorkel, or paddle alongside the gentle giants in the clearest of water. It’s definitely a sight worth seeing

St. Augustine – the oldest continuously populated city in the US., dates back to 1565. Visitors can go to Castillo de San Marcus, St. Augustine Lighthouse, and Old town St. Augustine. During December, the historic district celebrates the holiday season with millions of tiny lights throughout the City. Fun events include: Night of Lights, trolley tours, a tour of homes, and a regatta of light.

For kids: don’t forget a trip to the Alligator Farm Zoological Park to get a look at the state’s best teeth. Educational shows feature the care and feeding of alligators and other reptiles throughout the day.

Rainbow Springs State Park – Santa Over the Rainbow – Friends of Rainbow Springs bring Santa Claus to Dunnellon annually. Bring a child or become a child yourself for this one of a kind experience. Walk through the wonderland of lights that decorate the headsprings area of Rainbow Springs State Park. See Mr. and Mrs. Claus come up the Rainbow River on a lighted boat and head towards their cottage where pictures are taken. Visit with Santa’s elves and listen to carols. Visit the Friends of Rainbow Springs; see the real Mr. and Mrs. Claus during their Florida stay and feel the magic of the season! Limited days in December.

Jacksonville is well known for its beaches and parks and of course Amelia Island, a favorite among travelers. Plenty to see and do while exploring Jacksonville. Stroll along the beach at Amelia Island State Park and look for shells and sharks teeth, watch wildlife and if interested go horseback riding,

Daytona Beach – you may wish to visit the International Motor Speedway, a visit to the beach is always a favorite. While in the area you can stop and explore NASA’s Kennedy Space Center.

Orlando, the most visited spot in Florida. Home of Disneyland, Epcot Center, Universal Studios and much more. Additionally there are numerous great campgrounds to enjoy.

Everglades National Park, a one of a kind experience—take an air boat ride through the waterways of the Park, see a 16 foot alligator, giant turtles in crystal blue lagoons, and observe the many species of birds throughout the Park. You can gain access to the park from Miami or Ft. Meyers.

Florida’s Panhandle: The Panhandle is appropriately named the Emerald coast due to the brilliant green waters, and sugar white sandy beaches. Some popular tourist locations are Pensacola, Destin, Panama City, and Carrabelle Beach. Day trips include Mobile, Alabama and Pensacola, Florida.

Florida Keys, 160 miles of Coral Islands and over 60 bridges. Visit the daily festivities at Mallory Square. View the emerald green lagoons and the blue sea during various times of the daylight. Sample the local Key Lime Pie, try the Conch shellfish, absorb some of the tropical flavor of the Keys.