Everybody knows that Orlando is home to Mickey Mouse, Harry Potter and Shamu. Likewise, Tampa is home to the Bucks, Rays and the Gulf of Mexico. But Florida offers a range of small and medium sized towns with plenty to do, see and enjoy that shows off the beauty, friendliness and fun of Florida.
Here are 5 towns to keep in mind for your Florida vacation:
Mount Dora. Ok, who didn’t see that coming? Regular readers know we love this little town. With plenty of B&B’s, Inns and cottages to stay at, festivals to enjoy, dining to partake, and everything from wine tastings to dog walks to haunted hunts to outdoor activities, this little haven in Central Florida is a great place to include on any Orlando area vacation – or just come for Mount Dora!
Tarpon Springs. If you loved the movies My Big, Fat Greek Wedding or Mama Mia you’ll step into Tarpon Springs and feel right at home. If like me you grew up in an area with a large population of Greek families living among you, you’ll feel right at home. If you love Greece or just want to experience it without having to go across the pond, you’re coming to the right place. Greek food that is amazing, Greek boats that harvest sponge, the Greek language… oh heck, just get to Tarpon Springs if you’re game for a lot of Greek and enjoy! Opa!
Sarasota. I admit it, I’ve never been to Sarasota, but want to go. Home of Mote Marine Laboratory and it’s long running wild dolphin study in the bay, Sarasota is a quintessential Florida Gulf community. Pristine white sandy beaches along the Gulf of Mexico, a famous movie made here (Cocoon), museums, music, spring baseball, even a big cat sanctuary. Plenty to do and that amazing water & coast are a launching point for a wonderful Florida vacation.
St. Augustine. The last time I was in this historic Floridian city I was 4 years old. Yea, been a while. And it’s on the list for this spring, mainly because of the history and that historic charm that makes St. Augustine tick. A fort, cobbled streets, ghosts, dining, shopping, and the Atlantic make this a charming and romantic getaway, historic indulgence or fun site for making Florida memories.
Destin. No, I’ve never been, but Destin really caught my attention as it has – like too many Florida Gulf coast towns – struggled to show the world that the BP oil tragedy did not shut things down here. Billed as a “world-class beach and fishing resort community,” Destin sits along the Gulf of Mexico in Florida’ Panhandle, part of the “Emerald Coast.” White sandy beaches reach to a water that’s clear and crystal-like, fishing and water sports galore, fish eating a plenty, and romance, family fun, or on-your-own play the way to spend your day.
Five great Florida cities are just a few of the many wonderful spots to enjoy and immerse in the beauty, fun and wonder that is this playful state.