Make Florida your weekend vacation destination if you enjoy parasailing above the ocean in Key West, touring the culinary scene in Tampa, or joining the thrill seekers at Disney World in Orlando. Florida has so much to offer both adults and kids such as pristine beaches, hiking trails, and eateries showcasing the freshest seafood. When you stay at one of many incredible Florida vacation rentals, you can be situated near the heart of all the action, as well as enjoy rest and relaxation at the end of the day. Plan your next weekend getaway in one of these cities in Florida for a memorable experience.

1. Tampa

Tampa

Find big city action when making Tampa your weekend vacation destination. Foodies flock to the Tampa area for its thriving culinary scene. Time your getaway right to take part in the Cuban Sandwich Festival held each year or sign up for a cooking class at Epicurean in the SoHo district. Art enthusiasts can find themselves in cultural heaven with a tour of the Tampa Museum of Art, while the kids can marvel at the amazing sea life in the Florida Aquarium. Satisfy your cravings for outdoor fun with a hike through Fort De Soto Park or take a dip in the ocean while soaking up the sun at Davis Islands Beach.

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2. Key West

Key West

Cater to your laid-back style with the easy-going vibe of Key West, a popular tourist attraction located at the end of the Florida Keys. Spend your weekend relaxing along the main drag with cocktails and American cuisine at Jimmy Buffett’s Margaritaville or live music at Sloppy Joe’s Bar. Thrill-seekers can take advantage of the seaside attractions and water sports. Book a parasailing adventure with Key West Parasailing Adventure or go snorkeling with Sunset Watersports. Motor through the city to the Southern Most Point of the United States with a scooter from Pirate Scooter Rentals before soaking up the sun on the beach.

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3. Lake Okeechobee

Okee
Source: Flickr/Dale

As the largest lake in the state of Florida, Lake Okeechobee draws locals and tourists year round. With 700 square miles of water, you can spend your weekend getaway boating, swimming, kayaking, and fishing. Reel in some fresh fish for dinner when opting for a fishing excursion with Okeechobee Bass Guide Service. The lake is known for its largemouth bass, bluegill, and redear sunfish. When visiting in April, don’t miss out on the Sugar Festival hosted by local farms. Alternatively, plan your trip for February to take part in the Swamp Cabbage Festival hosted by the surrounding cities of Clewiston, Belle Glade, Pahokee, and Okeechobee.

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4. Miami

Miami
Source: Flickr/Mohmed Althani

A Florida vacation just isn’t complete without a visit to Miami. Beyond the pristine beaches, this lively city caters to artistic types with the Miami Design District that hosts the Perez Art Museum. When traveling in an adult-only group, head to the South Beach club scene to dance the night away at Nikki Beach Miami or enjoy the evening light show and beats at Cameo. Family-friendly attractions are also abundant. Spend the day at Jungle Island viewing exotic animals or take the kids to Miami Seaquarium for the sealife shows. When you need some retail therapy, hit the specialty shops along Lincoln Road.

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5. St. Petersburg

St. P
Source: Flickr/Reinhard Link

When searching for a vacation destination with something for everyone, St. Petersburg delivers with family-friendly attractions, beaches, history museums, and art festivals. As the home of the Salvador Dali Museum, this Florida city caters to the arts and cultural enthusiasts. Antiquers also get a treat with the 600 Block of the Grand Central District, featuring specialty shops and eccentric restaurants such as Jimmy Hula’s, Urban Comfort, and Brick and Mortar. A vacation rental in St. Petersburg also puts you right in the heart of Fort De Soto Park where you can walk or hike on trails that edge the coast and white sandy beaches.

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6. Amelia Island

Amelia
Source: Flickr/Jimmy_Joe

A vacation rental in Amelia Island puts you right on the coast of Georgia with more than a dozen miles of beaches to explore while searching for shark teeth in the sand. Hike the Amelia Island State Park trails that lead you right along the Atlantic coast offering stunning views. Make a splash in the water when renting a kayak from Amelia Island Kayak Excursions. History buffs can also get their fill of fun in this vacation destination that features a historic district lined with Victorian-style homes. Tour the Amelia Island Museum of History or treat the kids to a visit to the nearby Fernandina Beach Pinball Museum before feasting on New Orleans eats at Lulu’s At the Thompson’s House.

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7. Homosassa

Homosassa
Source: Flickr/Paul Clark

A weekend getaway in Homosassa puts you up close and personal with manatees. Take a dip in the warm and refreshing waters of the Crystal River or Homosassa Springs while swimming with the manatees alongside the guides from River Ventures. Continue your underwater adventures when signing up for a snorkeling tour and lesson with the Homosassa Manatee Snorkeling Center. Return to your vacation rental for some rest and relaxation, lounge on the deck of the Freezer Tiki Bar while feasting on shrimp and stone crab.

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8. Orlando

Orlando
Source: Flickr/Aanjhan Ranganathan

One of the most kid-friendly attractions in Florida is DisneyWorld, and a vacation rental in Orlando puts you within minutes of this wonderland. Beyond Mickey and Minnie Mouse, you and your family can also find adventure at Universal Studios, SeaWorld, Epcot, and Discovery Cove. See what Orlando has to offer when touring the Orlando Science Center or even Madame Tussauds specialty museum. Animal lovers can spend the day admiring the lions, tigers, and bears at the Exotic Animal Experience Zoo, while fans of horticulture can spend a tranquil time enjoying the plants and flowers at the colorful Harry P. Leu Gardens.

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