5 Best Weekend getaways for Florida residents

 

Whether you’re a new resident to Florida or have lived there your whole life, there are bound to be sites and locations you have yet to see. While a busy work week may keep you tied down for five days, weekends are the perfect time to get away and visit the great state of Florida. 

Let’s take a look at five of the best weekend getaways that Florida has to offer:

 

  • Columbia County

Florida, known for its humidity and ‘the sunshine state,’ it only makes sense that the number one weekend getaway destination would involve a trip to the Florida Springs. Columbia County is known for its natural freshwater springs as well as their spring-fed pools. 

Here are the multiple water places that are worth visiting in Columbia County:

  • Charles Springs: five acres of heavily wooded land along the Suwannee River.
  • Deep Spring Farm: 22 acres of organic farm gardens, meadows, spring-fed ponds, woodlands, and many different events and tours. 
  • Falling Creek Falls: provides a boardwalk that leads to the observation points that offer views of the creek as well as a path that leads directly to the waterfalls. 
  • Falmouth Springs: one of the shortest rivers in the country, it consists of 450 feet of the river before it disappears underground to a lime rock aquifer. 
  • Gilchrist Blue Springs State Park: features a diving dock and large swimming area, which is great for kids. 

These are just some of the many water places worth visiting in Columbia County. With so many destinations to visit, Columbia County makes a great weekend getaway for those who want to enjoy nature and cool down from the Florida heat. 

 

  • Florida Keys

 

 

For those who are more interested in a road trip, the Overseas Highway, which links to the Florida Keys, is an adventure that you don’t want to miss. This road trip is best when begun in Miami. This way, you have the option to travel the whole 113 miles, which usually takes three hours and includes different stops where you can look at the ocean views. 

The trip ends in Key West, but many people stop at Key Largo to stay in a beachfront resort or in Marathon, which marks the half waypoint. 

Other than a road trip, The Keys also offers the following: 

  • Diving
  • Boating
  • Fishing charters
  • Duval Street
  • Dolphin Research Center
  • Other Florida attractions

Key West has always been known for its Caribbean vibe and laid-back manner, making it the perfect destination for a relaxing, weekend getaway.

 

  • Bahia Honda State Park

Within the Florida Keys, there are many different camping sites worth visiting, including Bahia Honda State Park, which is located near Big Pine Key. Bahia consists of eight different campsites that allow both trailers and tents. There are also boat slips available, although the space is limited. 

Each different campsite offers waterfront views and comes with a private picnic table. Plus, there’s a nature trail that leads to the Old Bahia Honda Bridge–a former overseas highway that offers views of the entire island. 

Some other amenities offered at Bahia include:

  • Fishing
  • Running and biking spaces
  • Wide variety of shorebirds, wading birds, and hawks
  • Scuba diving
  • Snorkeling

When the getaway you’re looking for includes spending the entirety of your weekend in nature, Bahia Honda State Park is a great destination.

 

  • Orlando

 

A weekend trip to Orlando is best spent on a three-day weekend because of the large number of sites to see. If you have three days to spare, here’s a suggested itinerary:

 

  • Day one: would include the Coca-Cola Orlando eye, which offers great views from 400 feet above the ground. From here, you can visit the I-Drive 360 that has multiple stops to offer, including a wax museum, Sea Life Aquarium, Skeletons Museum, and many great restaurants. 

 

 

 

  • Day two: could take you to the theme park capital of the world where you can visit the Wizarding World of Harry Potter as well as Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventures. Plus, there’s Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge and Epcot World Showcase’s lake. 

 

 

 

  • Day three: revolves around Gatorland, which offers the Screamin’ Gator Zip Line and the Kennedy Space Center where there are Astronaut Encounter’s offered several times a day.

 

 

 

  • Sarasota

 

Sarasota, formerly known as the circus town, makes for a weekend full of fun and great beaches. The nickname circus town comes from the fact that Sarasota is the home-town of the Ringling Brothers Circus, whose legacy lives on to this day. 

While in Sarasota, visiting the Ca d’Zan mansion, the former home of John Ringling, as well as the museums dedicated to the history of the circus are a must. 

Beyond its circus history, Sarasota offers shopping centers, hiking, kayaking, prestigious golf courses, high-end restaurants, and so much more. 

Conclusion

There are many options for Florida residents to get away for the weekend–ranging from shopping to amusement parks, from nature to circus towns. Overall, there’s enough entertainment to keep you busy for many weekends to come.

 

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Michael Davis

Michael Davis