South-East Florida

Hi all,

My wife and I will be in South-East Florida this year. We are based in the UK and it will be our first visit to Florida.

We’d love tips on where to visit and recommendations on places to eat/theatre/cinemas etc.

We will definitely be visiting Miami, Fort Lauderdale, The Keys but I’d love to know about any other towns that may not be on our radar. Any tips for things to do specifically around the holidays or how to spend Christmas Day would be great!

Thanks in advance, I’ve had excellent recommendations from the forum before :slight_smile:

Edited to comply with posting guidelines.

I’ve done many sits in Florida over the past year, including the Miami-Fort Lauderdale area. So much to see and do but so many people and the traffic and congestion that go along with it! I have discovered so many other great Florida locations by letting sit availability drive my travels. I’ve been to places I’ve never heard of or visited before and found them lovely and certain destinations where I’d be happy to return. Transportation is a consideration though. Inside the major cities there is public transportation but it’s hard to travel around the state without a car. Some spots, like where I am now in Cedar Key, there are no other options. Including a map of where I’ve done my Florida sits.


UK sitter -
We moved to the greater St. Petersburg/Tampa area 9/2022 and love discovering new places in our new home state.
The beaches along the Gulf Coast have such white, soft sand. Great for walking and shelling. I would recommend Naples/Marco Island. It is considered among the ritzy areas, so stay in Naples for better prices than Marco Island.
Could recommend more, just LMK if you want more.
A couple things to consider with FL: Sept - March is the Hurricane/Tropical Storm season. These months are also wetter, sometimes it rains nearly every day. I suppose you are used to rain coming from the UK. However, it is very warm, humid rain.
This goes along with the second thing to consider - the heat/humidity. The state has a LARGE population of “snowbirds”. These folks maintain a home elsewhere and escape the often unbearable hot and humid summers. They then avoid the winters in their other home and spend winters in FL. So, it is pretty sticky some months of the year.

Thanks both for your replies. Sorry for the delay in replying, I didn’t seem to receive notifications that I got responses.

We managed to secure a sit in Miami and Sarasota area whilst we are in Florida in December. So so excited! Our trip looks like the following so far:

Week in Miami (Housesit)
5 days in The Keys
Week near Sarasota (Housesit)


@UKSitter, I’ve spent a lot of time in Florida over the years. I heavily wing things and don’t keep many details, but below are a few recommendations, in no particular order. They’re all a jumble in my memory, because I can’t recall where I went on which trip.

• I especially recommend the Flagler museum in Palm Beach:
Museums. Palm Beach is bougey and there’s plenty to do, if you’re into that.

• If you’re in Miami, taste some Cuban culture and food. Versailles is old-school good, but there are many other options. Florida attracts many folks from all over Latin America, so there’s terrific food from various countries. Like I remember randomly having great Colombian and Venezuelan breakfasts in Orlando.

• If you’re a fan of Hemingway: Their cats are lovely: Our Cats — The Hemingway Home & Museum

• Casey Key Resorts - Beachfront
221 Casey Key Road Nokomis, FL 34275
(Make sure it’s beachfront if you book, because they have multiple properties and you don’t want to accidentally end up inland if you want beachfront.)

• Siesta Beach has been voted No. 1 beach for years: Siesta Key Beach Florida | Florida's Top Beach | Visit Sarasota

• The Grove Resort & Spa Orlando
14501 Grove Resort Avenue, Winter Garden, FL, 3478

• Stuart, Florida, is a nice, low-key small town and has a little strip of restaurants and shops. My in-laws have rented waterfront homes there so we could all hang out on family get-togethers.

• If you get a chance to rent an RV, Florida is a great state for that, because of so many beautiful locations, though you might have to book ahead, depending on location and timing. If you want to explore that, it’s best to join say an RV group on Facebook, because there are serious RV’ers, many of whom do it full-time, and they can tell you specific great sites and their current statuses. Current status is especially important in Florida, because hurricanes and other bad weather can do damage that takes a long time to fix. The RV Lifestyle Group on Facebook is terrific — many experienced RV’ers will answer all types of Qs. For road trips in general, and specifically for RV’ing, there are tons of great apps and websites. If you ask on that group, people will generously share.