Planning a move to Florida? Perhaps you’re already a seasonal or full-time resident ready for atypical Sunshine State activities. As fellow Florida residents, we know there’s never a shortage of wonderful things to do or experience here. So, grab a pen and notepad, or cue up your favorite list-making app. Try these five recommendations to jump-start your personal Florida bucket list.
Dine at Cinderella’s Royal Table
A fun excuse to be a kid again, or, to treat one at Walt Disney World. The restaurant in Cinderella Castle offers the opportunity to dine in style no matter whether your meal is a theme-park lunch break or a magical dinner celebration. It’s perfect for birthday parties and dress-up fun. You’ll likely meet Cinderella herself, Disney Princesses and other characters. Proposal tip: Prince Charming that are ready to engage their real-life princesses can pop that question with a personalized glass slipper. All it takes is a bit of planning with restaurant staff.
Stay at a Bed and Breakfast Inn in St. Augustine
The Nation’s Oldest City, which celebrated its 450th birthday in 2015, contains a surfeit of atmospheric lodges, many housed in restored structures near or in the historic district. Staying in a B&B here often means “living history” thanks to these 18th-, 19th- and early 20th-century inns. Expect comfy furnishings, porches and patios, home-cooked breakfasts and a resident’s private view of old rooftops, tropical gardens and cobblestone streets. St. Augustine’s B&Bs are a special treat during festivals, holidays and special events. “Check in” to “check out” one of Florida’s special cities.
Tour Daytona International Speedway
A perfect place for your inner Speed Racer. Daytona Beach is home to NASCAR, which began with stock-car racing on the beach from the 1930’s the late 1950’s. Daytona International Speedway — “The World Center of Racing” — opened in 1959 and hosted the first Daytona 500 that February.
Following a $400 million reconstruction project, the infrastructure surrounding the iconic 2.5-mile racetrack has been transformed into the world’s first Motorsports stadium. Daily tours offer behind-the-scenes looks at infield garages, pit road and the renowned 31-degree-banked racing surface. Tour-goers also see the car that won that year’s Daytona 500 and the Motorsports Hall of Fame of America.
Cruise the Central Florida Coast
It’s easy at Port Canaveral, a hub for cruise ships. From giant ocean liners to sailboats, you can locate the cruise to fit your budget, time frame and desired experience. But, there’s more here than the cool opportunity to get on the water. Check calendars for upcoming rocket launches at nearby Kennedy Space Center on Cape Canaveral. The Port Canaveral area is great vantage point to watch a launch, then refuel at handy restaurants and bars. Also make time for the seven-level Exploration Tower, which thrills with two observation decks and multiple coastal-themed exhibits.
Swim with Dolphins at Discovery Cove
Another opportunity to be a kid again, or to treat one. You’ll find this experience at Seaworld’s Discovery Cove. Schedule time to swim with dolphins, snorkel with other finned friends and play with otters. Pssst: you also can hand-feed exotic birds. Perhaps that signature pink flamingo?
Out-of-the-box thinking means creative ways to experience all that the Sunshine State offers. Start with these five items for your Florida bucket list, then brainstorm your additions.
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