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Florida, much more than Disney!



Florida takes its name from the Spanish explorers who arrived on our shores in 1500s. It literally means “flowery land,” and it lives up to its name. There are many different images that can be associated with Florida; whether your picture is palm trees and white sand, verdant forests, happy families at Disney, or alligators in swamps, you’re correct. Florida has a lot of wildly different, equally delightful landscapes to choose from. Much like its landscapes, its communities and attractions are quite diverse.
With over 1,300 miles of coastline, Florida boasts the most ocean frontage of any state in the contiguous US. From the warm, calm gulf waters to the West, to the vibrant beach and surf communities that thrive on the East, if you’re looking for a seaside getaway, Florida is the place for you. Each beach community is unique, like a world unto itself. With so many different cultural influences, it makes sense that there is so much diversity to be found in the southernmost State in the US. South Florida – and Miami in particular – is rich with a Latin culture and home to some of the best Cuban food, the hottest nightclubs, and the most populated beaches in the US.  On the Northeast coast, historic Saint Augustine offers unbeatable shopping, unique (often macabre) attractions, and miles of beaches. The gulf coast is home to Destin, a top vacation destination with world-class fishing, premier golfing, and a very family friendly atmosphere.
If you’re not much of a beach bum, there are still plenty of options for you in Florida. There are plenty theme parks, from Busch Gardens in Tampa to the ever-popular Disney World in Orlando. Florida is also home to some of the most scenic and unspoiled natural habitats in the US. Visitors can enjoy the beauty of nature from one of the 150+ State Parks in the state, seeking out wildlife, natural springs, historic monuments, and more. Florida is a state made for visitors. Our economy is largely built around tourism and hospitality, so it is uniquely positioned to enchant out-of-towners. Even the Florida locals will tell you that there are plenty of items still on their “to-do” list – you could spend a lifetime here and still not see it all! There are so many hidden gems in the state that your biggest challenge as a visitor will be trying to decide what to do first.

International Vacation Home Exchange, IVHE.com has many fabulous homes for you to plan your vacation to Florida.  Click on the city links above for some of the choices and to fine tune your search, use the more options area - like golfing in Florida, fishing in Florida or beaches in Florida.  We also have a selection of additional blogs on home exchange in Florida featuring: St Augustine, Pensacola, and Marco Island, enjoy.    

Thank you to travel writer Emma Sledge.  

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