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South Florida: Be a Tourist in Your Own City

Written & Photographed by Alyse Mier

Day after day of living in a place that is absolute paradise you may forget just how beautiful the place is or even everything it has to offer. You begin to take for granted that a car ride to the beach is only 20 minutes away, or that you never get to experience a true winter. Well it’s time to stop and truly notice your surroundings. Rather than traveling out of town this summer take advantage of some of the best summer destinations being closer to home than you might think.

Fort Lauderdale
A city known for its miles of beaches, boating channels and for once being the overly popular spring break destination. However, now Fort Lauderdale is becoming quite the up and coming staycation destination for many locals. Some are even beginning to refer to this city as the “Venice of America.” You can experience the city by foot or consider taking a cycle tour of the city that will stop off at some of the best local breweries and bars. If you’re looking to witness some of Fort Lauderdale’s nightlife then definitely visit downtown and head over to Las Olas Boulevard. Las Olas has become home to some of South Florida’s best dining, shopping and entertaining experiences. Last, but most certainly not least, since you will be on vacation make sure to spend a few days relaxing and soaking up the sun on the beautiful beaches this city has to offer.

Hollywood Beach
A quiet little area nestled between Miami and Fort Lauderdale, which makes it perfect for a quiet and relaxing weekend getaway. Stay at one of the oceanfront hotels, and enjoy some of the beachfront restaurants, bars and shops that are located along the Hollywood Boardwalk. Downtown Hollywood offers a growing arts and cultural scene, which houses murals, galleries, art installations and Arts Park at Young Circle. Convenient trolley services are offered to make it easier for you to experience everything the city has to offer. For those of you interested in taking part in unique adventures you can play a game of life-sized chess or march to the beat of your own drum at the full moon festival, Drum Circle. The wide array of relaxing activities makes this little city the perfect match for a staycation.

Photography by Alyse Mier 2

Miami Beach
This insanely popular city has become best known for its weather, beaches and most importantly its party like atmosphere. Act like a tourist by visiting some of the widely popular beaches the city has to offer. Later, visit museums and soak in some of the city’s rich history by visiting the Art Deco Historic district or taking a stroll down Española Way. Take a food tour and indulge your taste buds in some of the best and most exotic flavors. And of course experience some of the best nightlife by dancing the night away at some of the best nightclubs or visiting some of the city’s award winning bars like the Broken Shaker. Miami Beach is a true picturesque vacation location.

Key Largo
The northernmost island of the Florida Keys offers an array of outdoor activities that are perfect for the whole family. Take in all the natural beauty Florida has to offer and learn about our coral reefs while snorkeling, kayaking or diving at the John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park. You can even paddle board through the key or swim with the dolphins. For those of you looking to stay on land enjoy a beautiful garden tour at the Botanic Gardens at Kona Kai Resort. Enjoy the vast green land, which is perfect for golfing and go carting. Key Largo also offers an array of activities for the little ones too such as: fishing for fossils, jet pack adventures, aquariums and much more. This little island has proven to be the perfect place to disconnect while staying local.

Photography by Alyse Mier

Key West
This southernmost point of the United States is perfect for taking in a vast amount of history and having your bit of fun. Charter a boat or rent a jet ski and travel the key in style. Enjoy some snorkeling, diving and whale watching from the same boat you chartered. Be sure to take a drive down the historic 7 Mile bridge and visit the Southernmost Point. As soon as the sun begins to set make sure to visit Mallory Square to witness the absolute most stunning sunset. Then make your way over to Duval Street for a night filled with drinks, dancing, live performances and even a bit of shopping. Key West is perfect way to unwind in the presence of natural beauty and create some lasting memories.

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