Here’s an interesting stop far off the beaten path: The Jacaranda Hotel opened in 1926 and has been providing comfy rooms and good food ever since. It’s located in the historic district of Avon Park, a little town in the middle of the state’s cattle and orange-grove country.
The Gamble Mansion has white columns to rival Tara and was the site of a dramatic Civil War event. It’s the only antebellum mansion left in South Florida.
This historic restaurant near Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Historic State Park at Cross Creek is a great place to eat like a cracker. It offers an old Florida ambiance and menu.
When I visited St. Augustine recently, I discovered Princess Place Preserve, a delightful out-of-the-way historic estate that is a good place to hike, kayak, camp and see wildlife. The 1888 hunting lodge is magnificent — and has a great story of a real princess behind it.
Washington Oaks Gardens State Park near St. Augustine has two sides — historic gardens amid ancient live oak trees on one side and a beach with fantastically shaped coquina rocks on the other.
No Name Pub has been around since the 1930s, and it looks like it. It offers tasty food in a historic building, but what makes this the king of Funky Florida is the decor: $90,000 (some say) stapled to the walls and ceiling.
A scenic road through Everglades National Park also brings you past a cute little roadside stop: the smallest post office in the US. In an era where post offices are being closed to save money, this little outpost dating to 1953 is a survivor.
Howley’s Diner has been there for 60 years. It’s not just retro, this West Palm Beach diner is the real deal — from its terrazzo floors to its tin ceiling.