Happy National Florida Day!

Did you know that today is National Florida Day? If you’ve visited Florida before–or live there–you’ve seen firsthand at least a bit of what makes it a special place. Thanks to the presence of notable entertainment and tourism options, the tropical climate, and diverse ethnic groups who call the state home, it has a unique and fascinating culture.

I‘ve been to Florida twice, but I only had a chance to see the Orlando metro area both times. I went for the first time back in the late 90s when my husband went there for a conference and I accompanied him. We went to the Magic Kingdom, Epcot and MGM Studios (which visitors now know as Hollywood Studios). However, since we were only there for a few days–and he was slated to attend meetings and presentations at his event–our ability to venture out beyond our hotel and the Disney parks was limited.

Last summer, our entire family went to Orlando. And, although we weren’t in town any longer, the four of us managed to see more of the popular city than we expected. We rode all of the Disney rides we’d put on our collective “wish lists;” visited Disney Springs to shop and eat (by the way, the food at The Polite Pig BBQ place was delicious!); and even had a chance to visit a mall and a Whole Foods store.

However, our drives to and from different places around Orlando showed us that there’s so much more we could have seen or done during our brief time there. That realization, in turn, led to me thinking about how much fun we could have if we ever had the chance to explore even more of the tropical state. I’m not sure when we’ll be able to go back again, but I’ll make sure I get my hands on some Florida visitors guides as soon as our flight is booked.

One book I plan on buying is the DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Florida pictured below. I’ve bought DK books in the past (like when we went abroad last summer) and I find that they are packed with lots of interesting details, helpful tips, and fascinating photos. For example, this one includes hotel and restaurant listings, highlights and street maps of various popular places, details about state parks, as well as historical facts about the state.

Another travel book brand I like is Lonely Planet. So, I plan on checking out this publisher’s Lonely Planet Florida (Travel Guide) (also pictured below). Filled with information on the Florida Keys, the Florida Coast, the city of Miami, sample trip itineraries, tips on traveling with kids, sections about theme parks, and other features, it is bound to be an invaluable resource.

Either way, I know we’ll be armed with two resources that will help me develop itineraries for our family and help us know what to bring on our trip to Florida, as well as what to expect upon arriving in different towns.

P.S. Have you ever been to Florida? If so, please indicate places and activities in the comment section below that you think we should check out during our next trip.

 (The above links are affiliate links that will allow you to purchase the books I mentioned. If you click on the links and make a purchase, I will receive a commission.)

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