Post Tagged with: "funky florida"

This is Old Florida: Oak trees in Micanopy.

Nine ways ways to find the real Florida — 15 minutes off I-75

You don’t have to drive hours off the interstate to find Florida’s natural beauty and funky history. You can find treasures within 10 minutes of these I-75 exits.

The most scenic section of the Big Bend Coastal Byway is the 40-mile stretch between Bald Point State Park and Apalachicola where the road hugs the coastline. (Photo: Bonnie Gross)

Big Bend Scenic Byway: A less-visited part of Florida

The Big Bend Scenic Byway links a big national wildlife refuge, three state parks, three historic lighthouses, one of the best beach islands in Florida and picturesque fishing towns. It winds through an area that sees fewer tourists, and offers rustic Old Florida delights at every turn–from black bears to white squirrels.

Drinks at the Maikai. Photo courtesy Slammie Productions.

Celebrate tiki culture in Fort Lauderdale at Hukilau, June 7-11, 2017

Hukilau is a festival of tiki culture that attracts more than a thousand people to Fort Lauderdale every year to celebrate rum drinks, tiki trinkets and nostalgia for the 1950s. If you don’t attend, you still might want to visit the unique bars and restaurants that attract the tikiphiles.

Ivey House Bed and Breakfast in Everglades City is designed for outdoors-oriented visitors. (Photo: Bonnie Gross)

Ivey House in Everglades City: B&B for outdoors folks

If you’re visiting the western entrance to Everglades National Park and the Ten Thousand Islands, there is a bed and breakfast that caters specifically to kayakers, hikers and outdoor enthusiasts – the Ivey House Bed and Breakfast in Everglades City.

The view from the water (Photo by Constance Mier)

Smallwood Store in Chokoloskee: Everglades icon still owned by original family

Smallwood Store is an exceptional slice of Florida history at an end-of-the-road site overlooking Chokoloskee Bay near Everglades City.

JB's Fish Camp in New Smyrna Beach

JB’s Fish Camp: Running with the crabs in New Smyrna Beach

JB’s is your original crab shack, a funky Florida kind of place where blue crabs are served steaming from the kitchen and dumped onto sheets of brown kraft paper that serve as your tablecloth. There’s an outdoor dining deck with a tiki bar overlooking Mosquito Lagoon.

The African Queen is the original vessel from director John Huston's classic 1951 film by the same name. Photos by Andy Newman/Florida Keys News Bureau

Key Largo: African Queen boat is for Bogart fans

They don’t make movies like “African Queen” any more — and they don’t make boats like the African Queen either. If your dream was to sit where Humphrey Bogart or Katherine Hepburn sat in the classic 1951 movie, then head to Key Largo. Here are the details you need to plan a visit.

Leoma Lovegrove’s Gallery and Garden in Matlacha.

Matlacha: Artsy, Gulf Coast spot for kayaking & nature

This out-of-the-way destination reminds us of artsy waterfront towns like Key West and Cedar Key. West of Fort Myers, Matlacha is a colorful collection of little wooden houses surrounded by good saltwater-kayak trails. Artists love this funky little village.

The honky-tonk sign out front proclaims the location as Downtown Card Sound

Alabama Jack’s: The best start to a Florida Keys roadtrip

Alabama Jack’s has been an outpost in the middle of water and mangroves for 50 years. It’s a well-weathered, open-air, waterfront spot known for conch fritters, fresh fish and pure Keys ambiance.

I do not think it is a coincidence that the Stephen Foster Museum at Stephen Foster Folk Culture Center State Park looks like a class Southern plantation.

Stephen Foster State Park: Glorious river; great cabins, odd old museum

This state park has superior cabins and is a great base for kayaking the Suwanee and hiking. It’s also home to an oddly dated museum on Stephen Foster. (We considered it a funky Florida find.)

Almost in the Keys!

Road food along the Overseas Highway

You won’t go hungry on your road trip through the Florida Keys. There are hundreds or roadside eateries serving fresh local fish and other home-made Cuban-influenced Keys favorites.

De Leon Springs: State park known for pancakes has much more

De Leon Springs: State park known for pancakes has much more

DeLeon Springs, about an hour north of Orlando, is a state parks with swimming, kayaking and fantastic history. But it’s best known for — of all things — its pancakes.

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