Take A Mini Daycation

Quick trips from several Florida locations


From Pensacola Blackwater River State Forest

Escape the city and head to one of Florida’s National forests. With its neighboring areas Blackwater River State Forest has the largest population of longleaf pine trees in the world. Explore the natural landscape by foot on a hike by canoe or on horseback. Float down one of the waterways and stop for a picnic on the shimmering white sands of a sandbar.

From Tallahassee Wakulla Springs

Wakulla Springs is more a park than a city but one well worth making a special day trip from Tallahassee. Located fewer than 20 miles from Tallahassee’s city center Edward Ball Wakulla Springs State Park features one of the largest and deepest natural springs in Florida. That may be why “The Creature from the Black Lagoon” was filmed here! Take a boat tour to see local critters such as alligators turtles and birds. Of course, you won’t be able to resist dipping into the refreshingly cool springs too.


From Jacksonville Amelia Island and Fernandina Beach

Amelia Island is a golf and spa haven while Fernandina Beach to the north is a quaint historic town known for its artwork antiques and boutiques. Both are great day trips from Jacksonville. Some must-see attractions on Amelia Island are Fort Clinch State Park which served as a military post during the Civil War the Spanish-American War and World War II; Amelia Island Lighthouse which began operating in 1839 and still operates today; and American Beach which was founded in 1935 by A.L. Lewis Florida’s first African-American millionaire.


From Gainesville St. Augustine

Tour the nation’s oldest city via a guided tour bus or tram and stop at all the major points of interest including an authentic Spanish fort and the Fountain of Youth. You can also take in the sights on a scenic boat ride or helicopter tour. Just off Interstate 95 in St. Augustine is the St. Augustine Premium Outlets. Nearby golfers can get their fill at World Golf Village and the World Golf Hall of Fame.


From Daytona Beach Ormond Beach

Located just north of Daytona Beach, Ormond Beach offers a few quirky local attractions for a Florida day trip. Tour The Casements the former winter home of John D. Rockefeller that now serves as the city’s cultural center. Spend some quality time outdoors at North Peninsula State Park with more than 2 miles of sandy beaches. Visit Ormond Memorial Art Museum & Gardens for nature trails fish ponds and fountains set amid lush tropical gardens. The best part? All of the attractions are free.


From Tampa/St. Petersburg/Clearwater Charlotte Harbor

A day trip to Charlotte Harbor & the Gulf Islands can include a morning swamp buggy tour through the 90 000-acre Crescent B Ranch a working cattle ranch with Babcock Wilderness Adventures. Enjoy a waterfront seafood lunch at Laishley Crab House. Spend the rest of the day strolling the shops at Fishermen’s Village.


From Sarasota/Bradenton Anna Maria Island

Start with breakfast at Ginny and Jane E’s a local favorite featuring delicious pastries and island-themed gifts. Go on a paddle tour with Captain Scott to Robinson Preserve where you’ll take in native landscapes and miles of trails (and perhaps catch a glimpse of a bald eagle). Finish the day with a spectacular sunset followed by casual dining at Island Time Bar & Grill or semi-fine dining at Bridge Street Bistro. Use the free Island Trolley to make your way around the island. Stay at the BridgeWalk Resort across from the beach if you decide to linger another day.


From Naples Big Cypress Reservation

Explore Florida’s biggest attraction the Everglades at Billie Swamp Safari. Learn the history of the Seminole Tribe and try a swamp buggy tour an airboat ride alligator show and more. Sample frog legs or alligator tail at the Swamp Water Café. If you’re so inclined you can even stay the night in an authentic native-style chickee hut.