Last year broke tourism records for Florida, with over 126 million people visiting the state in 2018. Of those visitors, 72 million stopped in the Orlando area to enjoy the theme parks, sports and arts venues and other activities the area offers. The state offers extensive activities to visitors of all ages, but it's especially attractive to families interested in keeping children entertained, active and busy while the adults enjoy their own amenities.
Related Blog: 6 Reasons Why Family Vacations are Important
Florida attracts visitors interested in the well-known theme parks, but keeps them returning year after year for more than just life-size action figures, cartoon characters come to life and mouse-theme souvenirs.
Eight reasons families love Florida over and over again
1. It's the weather
Seasonal temperatures can vary, from the low forties in the Panhandle to the mid-nineties in south Florida, but the thermometer rarely breaks the 100-degree mark. Humidity can make temperatures feel warmer, but most public buildings and tourist-oriented indoor spaces are air-conditioned. Heavy rain is rarely an issue, occurring mostly in the summer months and is rarely a prolonged event. Mostly comfortable temperatures means safely exploring and enjoying the outdoors with children.
2. It's the topography
Florida is basically flat, with the exception of drawbridges and Britton Hill, located in the Panhandle's Walton County. No mountains to climb or overly challenging trails to hike. Walking anywhere in the state is easy on everyone's feet.
3. It's the food
The ocean offers more than just a great view; there's seafood year round. From the finest imports arriving fresh at local ports, to locally caught Florida grouper, oysters, stone crab, shrimp, blue crab and spiny lobster, families find fish and shellfish served plain and fancy any time of day, or buy it at local markets and cook it themselves. Locally grown fresh produce, from tomatoes and corn to avocado, zucchini, bananas, citrus, watermelon, strawberries and peppers mean visitors are never far from a healthy meal.
4. It's the educational attractions
Aside from the rides, games and fireworks at the theme parks, families get an education while they vacation at such places as Kennedy Space Center and Visitors Complex, Zoo Miami, the Orlando Science Center, historic downtown St. Augustine, The Florida Aquarium, Bok Tower Gardens and Everglades Airboat Tours. Many of these attractions offer advance online ticketing at a discount for family groups and timed touring, so you have a chance to learn in the morning and still get back in time to catch the fireworks.
5. It's the water sports and beaches
Florida boasts almost 8,500 miles of coastline; that's a lot of surf, sunbathing and sandcastle building for the family. Many beaches offer parasailing, wakeboarding, paddleboarding, tubing, snorkeling, waterskiing, sailing, scuba, swimming, fishing and kayaking. From open ocean to miles of calm inland canals and rivers, families interested in an aquatic adventure pick from a range of suitable activities, stay active, meet the locals and enjoy the scenery.
6. OK...it's about the theme parks, too
Visiting Orlando's 10 main theme parks isn't price-prohibitive with a little planning. Don't attempt to visit all the parks in the time you have; pick the ones best suited to your family's needs according to their interests, ages and attention spans. Book your trip early and buy tickets online. Arrange for transportation to and from the park, such as parking passes purchased with entry tickets. Avoid vacationing during peak holiday times and set a spending limit on park purchases for food and souvenirs.
7. It's about the adult attractions
The grown ups find plenty to do in Florida: tennis, sports courts, theater, concerts, golf on the state's 1,200 courses, romantic outdoor bars, nightclubs and restaurants, spa pampering and just plain relaxing with the smart phones off, the emails ignored and the daily interruptions drowned out by the rustling of palm trees.
8. It's about Jeeves Florida Rentals
A Jeeves Florida Rental offers family vacationers customized privacy, peace and security unmatched by any hotel. Our homes feature pools, game rooms and themed bedrooms for children and full kitchens and dining areas; exactly what a family wants to begin and end their Florida stay every day. Our concierge service responds to your every need, whether it's balloons and a birthday cake for your youngest child, to a private chef for your wedding anniversary dinner to extra bedding and grocery shopping for additional guests. Enjoy Florida like a visitor, but stay like a resident; contact us for reservations and information.