Orlando is all about mice, magic and massive rides. The self-proclaimed theme park capital of the world is home to huge attractions including Walt Disney World, Universal Studios and Sea World. Whether it's goofying around with Mickey and friends or hurtling around the Hulk, these theme parks will have kids of all ages screaming in fear and squealing in delight. Did you know it would take about 67 eight-hour days to visit all of the attractions in Orlando? That's one very long and fun-packed holiday.
From the tips of its sun-kissed soaring skyline right down to the pastel Art Deco at South Beach, Miami is a Latino-infused city beach break. Whether you're strutting your stuff on South Beach, exploring Little Havana or shopping till you drop there's plenty to do in this palm-fringed metropolis. And when the sun goes down in Miami, the day is just beginning. As our mate Will Smith once said, you can, "party in the city where the heat is on, all night on the beach 'til the break of dawn," and he's not wrong.
If you're looking to make the most of the Sunshine State's magnificent weather, Fort Lauderdale is the place to go. With its pristine stretch of sand and good swimming, you'll find beach bums crowded here all year round. Its network of canals and waterways is reminiscent of Venice, and it's not uncommon to get around by water taxi. Home to attractions such as the Everglades Holiday Park and the Museum of Discovery and Science, there's plenty to do – if you can peel yourself from your beach towel that is.
The Florida Keys are a series of over 400 islands at the southern tip of the state, dividing the Gulf of Mexico from the Atlantic Ocean. With its Caribbean climate and paradise beaches Florida Keys is the place to go for a good dose of relaxation. Hire a car and drive the open road along the famous Overseas Highway that disappears into the horizon, before stretching out on a white sand beach or curling up in a hammock. If you're an active type, take the plunge and explore the colourful corals, shipwrecks and their tropical inhabitants make Florida Keys a hotspot for scuba diving, as well as sport fishing. And it's no surprise that scrumptious fresh seafood features heavily on the evening menu.
Sun-kissed Tampa may be less blingy than Miami, but it's also much quieter than Orlando. There are hundreds of things to see and do here, from aquariums to museums and beautiful parks. For an 'all-American' experience, have a go at rollerblading along Bayshore Boulevard, or go watch an NFL football match at the Raymond James Stadium – don't forget your foot-long hotdog. Tampa is home to Busch Gardens, which has the biggest collection of hair-raising rollercoasters in Florida. Tear along the track of merciless SheiKra or rip through looks on the almighty Kumbra, or if you prefer to keep your feet firmly on the ground rather than 200 feet in the air, Busch Gardens is also home to 12,000 animals.
Everglades National Park
Did you know the Everglades are not actually swampland but a very slowly moving river that's home to all sorts of wildlife? With over 1.5 million acres to explore, it will definitely take you more than one day to discover all that this subtropical ecosystem has to offer. It's the ultimate outdoor adventure park, with all sorts of activities on offer such as canoeing, hiking, biking and fishing. We'd recommend a hot-air balloon flight, and air-boat rides are pretty fun too – just watch out for those crocodiles! If you want the ultimate National Park experience, camping in the wilderness is not to be missed.
Kennedy Space Centre
Three…two…one…blast off! In the east of Orlando, the Kennedy Space Centre is NASA's launch headquarters. A truly unique experience, there's nowhere else in the world you can stand nose-to-nose with space shuttles, meet a real live astronaut or tour a rocket launch pad. If you're lucky you may even see a shuttle launch into space right in front of your eyes. And if all of this makes you want to become an astronaut, you can even embark on a half day astronaut training course – have you got what it takes?
A tropical paradise amidst the hustle and bustle of Florida's attractions, Discovery Cove is the perfect place to escape the crowds and relax. This place really is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Not only can you sway the day away on a hammock, wander along sandy shores and meet exotic animals, but there's the opportunity to swim with dolphins, snorkel with stingrays and come face-to-face with real, live sharks. Not to mention exploring colourful coral reefs and floating along the Windaway River. Also, for a nice change, everything is included in the price of your ticket: food, drinks, equipment, right down to the 'animal friendly' sun cream. Plus, it's ranked as Orlando's top attraction on Trip Advisor, with not a single negative review, which we think is pretty special.
Location of Florida
Average monthly temperature (°C) for Florida