Just a half an hour north of Miami is the city of Fort Lauderdale. This stylish beach resort on the South Eastern coast of Florida is not only popular with beach lovers who love the wide sandy beaches (which are much quieter than Miami) but those who love the arts, culture and of course, the great food and drink.
With 165 miles of canals running through Fort Lauderdale itself the area has the well deserved nickname “Venice of America” and is a mecca for boating so don’t forget your sailor hat.
Talking of boats, Fort Lauderdale is the second busiest cruise port in Florida just behind Miami. Also, British Airways now offer a direct flight to Fort Lauderdale from Gatwick, London.
So whether you are visiting for a couple of days before embarking on a cruise or staying ashore to enjoy the golden beaches, like most US cities driving in the only way to get around so it is highly advisable to rent a car.
The Beaches Of Fort Lauderdale
There is no shortage of beaches around Fort Lauderdale. There are many idyllic spots where you can easily escape the crowds and relax. Deerfield Beach is ideal for families with its crystal clear water and more importantly, golden sands which are perfect for building sandcastles. It also has a ‘Blue Wave’ certification which means it has a high standard of cleanliness and safety.
Those who want hand-crafted cocktails, boutique shopping and cool water sports should head for Lauderdale-By-The-Sea, a small seaside town with a friendly atmosphere The water here is great for scuba divers and snorkelers as it is warm, clear and you can see the coral reefs. Visit on a Friday to see the live concerts on the main street.
Dania Beach is a great beach and one of the least crowded. There is also a fishing pier, so it is not surprising that its restaurants serve the best fresh seafood. Come here later in the day to watch the beautiful sunset. While this beach is not as easily accessible, as some, hiring a car in Fort Lauderdale is a great idea to reach such destinations with ease.
Visit Sawgrass Recreation Park
Sawgrass Recreation Park in the Everglades National Park is an interesting place to explore. An airboat tour is highly recommended to discover the wildlife and learn about the endangered species. The tours run every day and the guides are knowledgable and informative. Learn about the impressive ecosystem, and watch out for the manatees, alligators and the variety of birds that live in the Everglades.
Sawgrass also has wildlife exhibits where you find out more about turtles and iguanas and see their 1000 pound alligator called Cannibal! I bet he likes a fine C
Tour The Flamingo Gardens
Flamingo Gardens is a botanical garden and wildlife reserve of the Everglades. Opened in 1927, in its 24 hectares of tropical paradise, you will find 3,000 exotic plant species, including the largest tree in Florida. Flamingo Gardens is a classic day out for visitors of all ages and hosts more than 83 native species, including alligators, lynxes, panthers and, of course, flamingos.
Visit The Museum Of Discovery And Science
The Museum of Discovery and Science in Fort Lauderdale is great to visit with all the family as there is always something exciting to see. Full of interactive exhibitions, the first floor has a section for little kids to make learning fun, as well as a 20 person airboat simulator and an exhibition on the Everglades ecosystem. Other popular areas include the science theatre and the To-Fly aviator exhibit.
Explore The Canals
One of the most fun ways to see Fort Lauderdale is by means of a water taxi tour. On board these vehicles you can explore the canals of the ‘Venice of America’. There are three different routes that connect and can take you to picture postcards beaches, great seafood restaurants and luxury shops.
No matter what you do in Fort Lauderdale, make sure to enjoy it to the fullest and let us know about your experience.