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EPIC SUMMER: FLORIDA EDITION

Baiser Beauty

The warm weather is finally here, the sun is shinning, the wind is blowing and the clear water of the beach is calling our name. Lets be honest, when we think about summer we think about pools, piñas coladas, a good vintage spot for some pictures and lots of tanning and palm trees, so what better place than Florida to have an affordable and very cool vacation. the sunshine state is full of heavenly beach towns that offer white sand, surfing, sailing, castle building, tiki bars and lots of cute vintage motels if you are on a budget. So get ready with your summer essentials and enjoy our top Florida getaways.

Florida Keys

If you are looking for escape, Florida Keys is for you. This archipelago of islands spans 200 kilometers between the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico. Start your journey with Key Largo. It offers the most spectacular underwater diving in the United States. You can observe more than 600 species of fish and some 40 specimens of corals. Then, continue your trip with Islamorada; it has a multitude of art galleries and typical shops that you can visit at your leisure. If you want to escape the tourists, recommend the western part, much more isolated, because not connected by the road. Here you will find, uninhabited and wild, the Dry Torturas Nature Reserve, a small group of seven islands of extremely low elevation and irregular relief. Some islands are covered with mangrove and green plants, while others are totally devoid of vegetation. They are in perpetual motion, so that their shape and size are constantly evolving.

TIP: If you are in Key West visit BIEN restaurant a Caribbean veggie fusion you must try Kermits has the best key lime pie, a Florida Key’s classic.

 Sanibel Island

With a paradisiacal beauty, Sanibel is renowned throughout the world for its aesthetics and its 400 kinds of shells that run aground on its beaches. One beautiful thing is the sunsets. A splendid spectacle, a patchwork of colors. Surely even more beautiful as the lights of hotels and dwellings are at their minimum. For a simple reason: do not mislead the sea turtles that come to lay on the beach. Hundreds of small islands surround Sanibel. Most are unpopulated islands, but they create a fantastic natural environment for sailing. If you want to be alone and discover the nature, I advise you to take the open see.

TIP: Visit de Darling National Wildlife Refuge and the Bailey Matthews National Shell Museum

 St. Augustine

St Augustine is a beautiful little town with charming houses, pretty alleys and wide avenues lined with trees. It would be the oldest of the United States founded in 1565 by the Spanish. There is The Oldest School House, which is the oldest wooden school in the United States. You can also see musicians and people disguised in period costumes in all the town, which gives the impression of being in another space time or almost believing in Europe. To be more peaceful, take the Bridge of Lyons to enter to Anastasia Island. On it, you can discover the St Augustine Lighthouse & Museum black and white dome from 1874. Of course, you can visit it if you have a big energy because there are 219 steps. Then, there is The Anastasia State Park, it provides access to two hiking trails; the first takes to quarries of coquina. The second is to the west and the forest has grown on the old dunes: the path is splendid.

TIP: Visit the Lightner Museum and Old City

Amelia Island

Amelia Island is one of the top 10 islands in North America and seems to be in the 25 most beautiful islands in the world. On the island, there is The Fort Clinch Park; it is a natural park of 1400 hectares which offers many activities in the wilderness. In addition, you will be able to see many animals such as turtles, raccoons, deer, alligators... You will also discover marshes, wild beaches with sand dunes and many trails. The island offers many activities: cycling, golf, boating, surfing, canoeing, jet skiing, kayaking, diving and for those who love horses, it is possible to go horseback riding on the beach with them. Many festivals exist in Amelia Island including the Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival or the Amelia Chamber Music Festival. Then, you can visit the historic center of Fernandina Beach. All around, you will see beautiful colonial-style houses and the center has a very picturesque side. The Historic District is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Carriage rides are offered to immerse yourself even more in the historic atmosphere of the city. In the center there are small shops, antique shops, cafes and restaurants. And, you can ended the day with a sumptuous sunset from the pontoon of the beautiful port of Fernandina Beach.

TIP: Visit Brew Pub and Grub – Karibo Cafe & Karibrew for a wonderful local brew.

St Petersburg

Do you know the sunniest city in the United States? The one where the sun shines more than 360 days a year? Its name alone evokes the cold and icy steppes of Russia ... St Petersburg is yet a city of festivities and arts, known for being bathed by a constant sun. There are a lot of things to do in this town such as the city is very animated and gives an important place to the Art. There are many museums, such as the Museum of Fine Arts, the Holocaust Museum, the Museum of History and the Salvador Dali Museum.

To explore the history of the region, visit Heritage Village. Located in the Pinewood Cultural Park, the village offers 28 houses to sample the Floridian charms of the 19th century. In a pine and palmgarden, there is a small school, a church, a warehouse, a store of the railway station, as well asvarious private residences. The walks you have to do is the Pier. If the architecture of this jetty will repel you from the start, the atmosphere will seduce you. A romantic and family walk ideal for sunset, the Pier will allow you toembrace the city by contemplating the ballet of dolphins and seagulls. Then, there is the BuschGardens, it is divided into nine regions with African resonances, the park will allow you to realize a true safari such as feeding giraffes and see wild animals.TIP: visit FREEBEACHRIDE.COM for complementary free transformation around town.