It was a long time ago when I first time travel to the USA. I was still studying at university and went to the USA to work during summer break. The state we went to was Florida. I still remember the time we were traveling by bus from the airport and we saw the beautiful beaches. The sand was so white, that for a second I thought it is snow. I have never ever seen anything like this and couldn’t wait to put my feet on it. The place in Florida we stayed was called Fort Walton Beach and we were working in Destin. I visited Florida a few years later and that time it was in Orlando. Therefore, I would like to provide you with personal advice on where to go in Florida.
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Florida is a state in the Southeastern region of the USA. It is bordering with Gulf of Mexico, Alabama, Georgia, the Bahamas, and Cuba.
Capital City – Tallahassee
Official language – English, but a lot of people speak Spanish too
Time zone in Tallahassee – GMT 5
Currency – USD $
Visa – to the USA are required and the process varies depending on the country you are from. The best thing is to check with the US embassy in your country.
Climate – humid tropical and subtropical. Temperatures during summer are around 30-40 degrees Celsius, in the winter around 20, but the lowest in some regions can go to 5 degrees Celsius. You can visit Florida any time, but for beaches the best time is summer. Florida also has the most precipitation in all states and hurricanes are expected from August till October.
Tourism is the largest sector of Florida’s economy. Not only because of the beautiful beaches but also for the amusement parks, mostly in Orlando – Walt Disney World Resort, Universal Orlando Resort, and SeaWorld.
Beaches in Florida
Florida has one of the best beaches in the world. To go to Key West, you can enjoy beautiful beaches, water sports, nightlife, shops, bars, cafes, historic sites like Ernest Hemingway Home and Museum.
Everyone knows that Miami Beach is very popular for holidays, celebrities, and movies. You can enjoy beautiful long beaches here with great nightlife and spas.
Destin and Fort Walton Beach are places where I stayed one whole summer. Destin grew from a small fishing village to a popular vacation destination. There is Big Kahuna’s Water and Adventure Park where I worked the whole summer. It was so much fun to work there and in our free days, we could enjoy the slides. Destin and Fort Walton Beach are close to each other and both have wonderful beaches with the softest sand and crystal clear water. I can’t forget about the wonderful restaurants here where you get great food, including seafood. One of the best restaurants is the one with all you can eat. We really enjoyed our stay here.
Orlando Walt Disney World
Orlando is a great place to visit not only for beaches but mostly for amusement parks. Not only when you have kids, but at any age, you can have fun here and enjoy yourself. The biggest one is Walt Disney World with theme parks and water parks. There are four theme parks there. You can purchase your tickets here.
Magic Kingdom with Cinderella Castle, Minnie, Mickey, and other characters can be seen around in a big parade. There is always different program and show. I experience the parade and it was an unforgettable experience. All the characters are going around, smiling, waving or they even coming close to you. I felt like a child in a fairy tale where all dreams come true.
Epcot is a futuristic park with an emphasis on technology and science. It is divided into two parts. One is an attraction with themes of imagination and space travel. The second one is pavilions representing different countries with attractions and dining.
Hollywood Studio, there are attractions representing movies, where you can be part of it. There are rides and roller coasters, like Hollywood Tower Hotel where we went by lift and explore the hotel of fear.
Animal Kingdom – attractions and rides with wild animals in an exotic jungle. You can watch Disney characters on flotillas, or go on a guided tour of the African savanna, or speed train through the Himalayas.
This year Walt Disney World is celebrating its 50th anniversary, there is special food, sweets, and desserts, 50 Disney characters in gold can be found all over the parks and you can buy 50th-anniversary souvenirs.
There are two water parks, Disney’s Typhoon Lagoon and Disney’s Blizzard Beach
They also have several hotels to stay there.
Universal Orlando will take you to Hollywood movies. You will experience the movies like you are part of them. For example, we were sitting in a metro where the earthquake started. Or we went on a boat trip to experience Jaws movie where sharks were attacking us, there was fire and explosions.
There are adventures rides and attractions that bring awesome experiences to your life. We did so many rides and roller coasters in the whole day, for example, Hulk Coaster and one tower, where we walked up and we sit on chairs around a column, they closed the chairs and we were waiting for long what will happen. Suddenly they shoot us up to the sky. The feeling that your body is up, but your stomach stayed down. We were sitting in the sky, legs hanging down, looking at people down that looked like ants. Again they left us there for some time until they took us down again. My legs were shaking for a few minutes on the ground until I was able to walk normally. You must be brave to do it, but it is so amazing.
You can experience movies like Harry Potter, Fast and Furious, Jurassic Park, Minions, Mummy, and many, many more. Tickets can be purchased here.
SeaWorld is mostly about sea mammals, but you can also find rides and attractions there. There are presentations and activities, like Dolphin Adventures, Sea Lion & otter show, We saw the Sea Lion show there and it was a very funny and great show. Orca encounter and show. We saw Shamu show which was an incredible experience, as Orca is a magnificent mammal. Admission tickets can be purchased here.
Animal experience- you can see how the trainers care for the animals and you can get close to some of them and book a tour.
Dining and Gift shops can’t be missed here. They also organize seasonal events, for instance, this year, Christmas celebration where they turn SeaWorld into a winter wonderland, Sesame Street Christmas parade, ice-skating show, you can visit Santa and watch fireworks with fountains and lights.
Best Places in Florida
When you don’t know where to go in Florida while planning your vacation or weekend, these are the best places to visit. You can relax on soft, white sandy beaches, have fun in water parks in Destin, Fort Walton Beach, Key West, or Miami. Or you can visit Disney World where all dreams come true, together with Universal Orlando Resort and SeaWorld, and experience adventure rides and attractions for all ages. Seeing, interacting, and learning about animals, is all to be done in Orlando. My time spent there was awesome and I hope will return one day. Please let me know how did you enjoy it when you visit.