Engaging Experiences Abound in Florida for Families Seeking Sun, Fun and Adventure
TALLAHASSEE, Fla (May 1, 2018) – As school winds down and the weather heats up heading into summer 2018, Florida invites families to soak up the sun by land, sea and air to create lasting memories through new Sunshine State experiences. From diving in coral reefs in Key Largo, to soaring through ziplining courses in St. Cloud, to escaping to untouched beaches in Navarre and spotting nesting sea turtles by moonlight, Florida has the perfect summer adventure for every family.
Walking with Wildlife
Adventurous families can dive into John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park in Key Largo, the diving capital of the world, to enter a colorful community of coral reefs teeming with tropical fish. Visitors can also explore the park’s massive mangrove swamps and see wildlife by kayak or catamaran. For more information, visit pennekamppark.com
At Disney’s Vero Beach Resort, the Turtle Tracks Program (which educates kids on the threats facing sea turtles), offers a memorable evening in The Sea Turtle Night Walk Experience. During the two to four-hour excursion, guests discover turtle nests by moonlight. The experience is offered only on select dates through the months of June and July. Sea Turtle Night Walk ($35/person + tax).
The Central Florida Zoo and Botanical Gardens give guests a bird’s eye view of pristine natural animal habitats with its zipline ZOOm Air Adventures. Children can also get in on the action with interactive experiences including giraffe feedings. For more information visit www.centralfloridazoo.org.
Discover the Unexpected
Families can step back in time and into the home of a literary icon at the Ernest Hemingway Home & Museum on Key West. Surrounded by stunning turquoise waters, the home features the writer’s unusual collection of six-toed cats and rooms restored to how they were when he lived there over the course of a decade. For more information visit hemingwayhome.com.
Key West also kicks up its heels for the nightly Sunset Celebration at Mallory Square, a festive, family- friendly event with artists, performers and animals of all varieties. The event is free for locals and visitors to enjoy while watching Key West’s famous crimson sunsets. Visit mallorysquare.com for more information.
Soaring in the Sunshine
Everyone can fly through the trees at Forever Florida’s Zipline Safari. Central Florida’s largest zipline course in St. Cloud offers excitement and thrills, with seven ziplines and three sky bridges reaching heights of 68 ft. high that take flyers up to 30 mph. For more information, visit foreverflorida.com
Kids and adults can take to the heights and channel their inner ninja warrior at Planet Obstacle in Lake Mary, FL. With its kid-friendly ninja course, ball pits and trampolines in addition to aerial ropes courses, adult sized ninja course, zip lining and rock climbing, guests of every age can reach new heights this summer. For more information visit planetobstacle.com
Sand Between the Toes
Navarre Beach, “Florida’s Best Kept Secret,” is found on Santa Rosa Island, is a quiet untouched beach midway between the Panhandle’s two most popular stretches of beach. Visitors can find themselves with ample space to unwind, undisturbed by other beach goers to enjoy the dazzling aquamarine waters from the beach, by kayak, or diving in for a swim. Sun seekers at Navarre Beach can also enjoy wildlife encounters at Navarre Beach Marine Park and the Gulf Breeze Zoo.
An ideal location for both relaxing and playing by the sea is Wabasso Causeway Beach. Ideal for family picnics as well as for launching kayaks, jet skis and fishing boats, parents and kids can even spot the local purple crabs or slumber under the beach’s beautiful Australian pine trees.
About VISIT FLORIDA
As the Sunshine State’s No. 1 industry, tourism was responsible for welcoming 112.4 million visitors in 2016. Based on the latest economic impact study, Florida visitors spent $108.8 billion and supported 1.4 million Florida jobs. According to the Office of Economic and Demographic Research, for every $1 the state invests in VISIT FLORIDA – the official tourism marketing corporation for the State of Florida – $3.20 in tax revenue is generated. VISIT FLORIDA promotes tourism to Florida through sales, advertising, promotions, public relations and visitor services programs. As a public/private partnership, VISIT FLORIDA serves more than 12,000 tourism industry businesses, including major strategic alliance partnerships with Busch Gardens Tampa, Disney Destinations, The Hertz Corporation, LEGOLAND Florida Resort, SeaWorld Parks & Resorts Orlando, Simon Shopping Destinations and Universal Orlando Resort. To learn more about VISIT FLORIDA, please go to VISITFLORIDA.org or follow us on our industry social media channels:SunshineMatters.org, Facebook and Twitter @FloridaTourism.
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