12 Places Where You Can Still Experience Old Florida
While most outsiders know Florida for its theme parks and popular beaches, there’s a whole other side of our state that most visitors never see. If you ask most native Floridians, they’ll tell you this — “Old Florida” — is the best part. The parts of our state that predate all of the big-name attractions that draw the tourists, are often referred to as Old Florida. And there are still many places in the state where this spirit still lives; this is the Florida to which Hemingway referred. Here are 12 of the best places to visit in Old Florida:
Have you visited any of these places? Where do you think are the best places to visit in Old Florida? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!
And for more Florida fun, be sure to check out our Ultimate Florida Bucket List!
Best Places to Visit in Old Florida
Where are some historic places in Florida?
Florida may be well known for modern-day attractions like theme parks, but some of the best attractions are actually much, much older. Bok Tower Gardens in Central Florida is one of our prettiest historic landmarks. The 205-foot tower also holds some of the world’s finest carillon bells. To top it off, the surrounding gardens are also enchanting. Stiltsville is another gem; construction began in the 1930s as several offshore clubs located about a mile south of Cape Florida in Miami-Dade County. These clubs were popular hot spots for wealthy and influential visitors seeking to indulge in vices such as gambling. A hurricane damaged the structures beyond repair in 1965. The remaining seven houses are maintained and protected by the National Park Service. And Ponce de Leon Inlet Light is positively resplendent; this lighthouse stands 175 feet tall, making it the tallest lighthouse in Florida and one of the tallest in the country. Climb to the top of its 203 steps and get ready for a breathtaking view.
What’s the history of Old Florida?
If the above list of best places to visit in Old Florida made you curious, we put together a photo gallery of some timeless old photographs of The Sunshine State. There’s a reason so many people speak fondly of Old Florida and the way things used to be. Florida has a unique and fascinating history, and unless you’re sitting down with a bunch of locals who are sharing their tall tales, these old photos of Florida may just have to do the trick in taking you back a century. While some dates for these photos that are provided are approximations, the photos themselves should all be at least a century old. See for yourself what Old Florida was truly like.
What are some must-visit tourist attractions in Florida?
The Sunshine State is such a fun place to explore, and we put together a list of ultimate bucket list so you can experience some of the best must-visit tourist attractions in Florida! Our top picks? Key West: while it might sound like a cliche, Key West really does have something for everyone. It’s scenic, historic, funky, fun, and charming all rolled into one. Gulf Islands National Seashore: one of the best beaches in the state, Gulf Islands boasts bright green waters and snow-white sands as far as the eye can see. And no visit to Florida would be complete without checking out Everglades National Park. An oldie but a goodie, the Everglades consists of more than a million acres of the biological diversity and natural beauty that Florida was famous for long before its theme parks and vacation spots. Last but not least — Disney World. Of course, if you’re writing about the ultimate Florida bucket list, you can’t leave off the Magic Kingdom. Even if you’re 99 years old, this place can make you feel young again.