From the exciting Florida Keys hiking trails to the vibrant Miami nightlife to the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, there’s really no surprise that Florida is one of the most popular vacation destinations in the U.S. Whether you’re looking to relax, have fun, or go on an adventure, the Sunshine State has something for everyone.
But just like visiting any other destination, traveling to Florida also requires detailed planning and organizing. Doing so can help you make the most of our vacation and get more bang for your travel buck. So if you’re thinking about heading to Florida for the first time, here are four things you should know.
Plan your activities ahead
Choosing what you want to do on your vacation is probably the most exciting part of the planning process. It will depend on the length of your trip, the part of Florida you’re planning on visiting, and your budget. It’ll also have to do with the type of traveler you are.
For some, an ideal Florida vacation will involve visiting a theme park in Orlando, in which case it definitely pays to plan ahead. For instance, by getting your park tickets ahead of time, you can take advantage of discounts. On the other hand, if you’re looking to spend your days relaxing on Florida’s coasts, take time to find the best beaches that fit your lifestyle. East Coast and West Coast beaches offer quite different experiences depending on what you’re looking for.
Seek out cool local spots and hidden gems
When you think of tourist towns in Florida, you may think of world-famous landmarks and popular tourist spots. What you may not know is that even these tourist towns have some charming hidden gems of their own. If conventional tourism isn’t your cup of tea, try getting off the beaten path and traveling like a local instead.
Sometimes, this will mean talking to the locals who will point you to the best steakhouse in town. Other times, it’ll involve wandering around aimlessly and stumbling across a charming cultural sight. As exciting as seeking cool, lesser-known local spots may be, try not to overschedule your days. Leave some room in your itinerary for spontaneity, allowing yourself to simply relax and soak up the experience.
Rent a car so you can get around more easily
Whether they’re taking a trip for relaxation or embarking on an adventure, many tourists plan to rely on public transit as a means for exploring a city they’re visiting. Of course, that may be a viable option in some places. However, it’s not really the best or the most efficient way to experience what the Sunshine State has to offer.
In fact, in most areas of the state, you will need a car in order to get around. It’s pretty much a necessity in Florida, especially if you’re looking to experience its various environments and climates. One option is to rent a car, but you can use Uber and other popular ride sharing services as well.
Be prepared for humidity and hurricanes
Speaking of Florida’s variations in climate, you will need to prepare for the ever-changing and unpredictable weather conditions. Depending on when you’re planning to visit Florida, you may need to get travel insurance beforehand. August and September are the times when big storms are pretty common, with the hurricane season in Florida starting in June and ending in November. This is why it’s important to choose the best time to visit Florida.
Other than hurricanes, you’ll also need to be prepared for humidity. The humidity levels can reach 90% in the period from June to September and maybe followed by thunderstorms. That said, Florida is called the Sunshine State after all, so remember to keep your skin safe too. Apply sunscreen with an SPF 15 frequently and stand in the shade whenever possible. Afternoon storms are frequent as well, so make sure to carry an umbrella when heading out during the day.
Planning a trip is both an exciting and daunting process, especially if you’re visiting a place for the first time. Between Googling what to pack for your destination to figuring out the tourist spots you simply must visit, the entire process can easily start to feel overwhelming.
By taking the time to learn what to expect from your Florida trip, you can manage to keep the unnecessary stress at bay and plan a vacation you’ll remember for years to come.
About the guest Author
Eve Anderson is a marketing specialist turned blogger. Interested in sports and exciting travel destinations. Love to share content that can inform people.