Of course, the easiest way is just to be born here, but not everyone can be so lucky. Whether you’re new to our state and you need a quick immersion in all things Florida, or you’re a lifelong resident looking for a refresher course, we’ve got you covered. Grab your map, sunscreen, and lots of bug repellant and get ready for the adventure of a lifetime.
1. See an alligator in person.
If you're too chicken to check one out (from a safe distance), at least try some fried gator tail.
2. The same goes for our beloved manatees.
Not the eating them part, though. Please don't do that.
3. Visit the nation's oldest city.
St. Augustine has something for everyone. This city offers fascinating history, architecture, natural beauty, great dining and plenty of ghost hunting opportunities.
4. Watch a sunrise and sunset on a beautiful beach.
Set aside a day to catch a beach sunrise on our east coast and drive across our state to a beach on the west coast for an equally stunning sunset.
5. Begin a lifelong quest for the perfect piece of Key lime pie.
Every journey begins with a single slice.
6. Repeat the same process for the best Cuban sandwich.
We're not sure exactly where this delectable deli delight came from, but Tampa and Key West definitely played a big part in the history of this classic sandwich.
7. Check out the Emerald Coast.
Don't forget the First Coast, Space Coast, Nature Coast, Sun Coast, Treasure Coast, and the Forgotten Coast!
8. Spend a day (or a whole summer) at one of our many crystal clear springs.
Whether you're swimming, snorkeling, tubing, kayaking, or just snapping some surreal photos, our springs are a big part of what makes Florida so unique and beautiful.
9. Sample as much local seafood as possible.
Stone crab, rock shrimp, Apalachicola oysters, Cedar Key clams, the list goes on and on.
10. Marvel at the mermaids of Weeki Wachee.
Floridians love this place and all of its vintage charm so much we made it a state park.
11. See (and hear) the enchanting Bok Tower in Lake Wales.
Spend the day strolling through the lush gardens surrounding this historic landmark.
12. Check out the weird side of Florida.
From Coral Castle in Homestead to the psychic town of Cassadaga, Florida is chock-full of awesomely weird adventures.
13. Visit the Everglades.
Every Floridian should explore as many of our national and state parks as possible. Of course, this includes our wild and wonderful Everglades National Park.
14. Take a vacation in the Keys.
We live where everyone else vacations, right? So we owe it to ourselves to take advantage of all our state has to offer.
How many of these have you done? What other rites of passage would you add to every Floridian’s list? Please share them with us!