Cortez: A Traditional Fishing Village on the Gulf Coast

For those of us who like to explore off-the-beaten-track treasures and small authentic outposts of “old Florida,” a visit to Cortez, on Sarasota Bay in Manatee County, is a step back in time. It’s only an hour from Sarasota and a quick jaunt from Bradenton, and it’s definitely worth the trip! Founded in 1880, Cortez…

Manatee Viewing Spots from The Gulf Coast to Merritt Island

One of the best things about life in Florida is our unparalleled opportunity to view rare species in the wild. If you haven’t yet seen the docile manatee, it’s time to go—while they still inhabit the warm waters off our ample coastline. Now that the weather has gotten cooler, our native populations of Florida manatees…

Gourmet Ice Cream Tour from Siesta Key to DeLand

We Floridians are lucky we don’t have to contend with the snow, icy temperatures, and freezing conditions that befall much of the country in wintertime. Here, it’s always warm enough to sit outdoors, and it’s (almost) always beach weather. That means one thing: It’s never too cold to eat ice cream! Whether you are on…

4 Central Florida Attractions that Locals Love

One of the greatest advantages of living in Florida is that our state is a treasure trove of quirky oddities and unique attractions in out-of-the-way places. As residents, we can explore the back roads and take our time discovering the more uncommon places that tourists rarely frequent. Sarasota plays home to Circus Museum at the…

Raymond James Stadium

Tampa Bay Hosts 2017 National Collegiate Playoff This is a killer sports year for Tampa Bay! We are playing host, for the first time in history, to the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship game, which will be played on January 9 in our very own Raymond James Stadium. As zealous college football fans know…

Bringing Back Main Street

It’s happening all over Florida: residents are rediscovering Main Street, preserving historic architecture, returning to walkable neighborhoods, and engaging with their neighbors. Some of our historic cities, like Mount Dora and Bradenton, have managed to preserve this small town feeling on their own, but many others are taking advantage of the concerted efforts of the…

Amazing Museums in Central and Southwest Florida

It can’t be warm and sunny all the time. So when we experience the inevitable rainy day here in Florida, or when we’re just in the mood to take in some fine art or high culture, we know there’s plenty to choose from! From contemporary art exhibitions to a roaring ‘20s mansion, here are some…

Warm Mineral Springs in North Port

Europeans, Russians, Ukrainians, Scandinavians, and Israelis are all well acquainted with the mental and physical health benefits of soaking in mineral springs. But the habit is not as common for us Americans. And it turns out that we Central Floridians live next door to the largest mineral spring in the world. Welcome to Warm Mineral…

Where to get your Laugh on: Improv Troupes from St. Pete to Orlando

They say laughter is the best medicine. In fact science bears out that laughing actually does relieve stress and boost your mood. And what’s a better way to tickle your funny bone than spending a night at a comedy club? Here in Florida we have some of the most talented improv troupes around. Can you…

Our Two Favorite Beaches for Snorkeling in Central and Southwest Florida

There are many reasons to go to the beach—to bask in the sun, watch shore birds skitter along the surf, get sporty with jet skis, surf boards, or parasails, make sand castles with your kids, or mosey along the local boardwalk. We Floridians are lucky to have fabulous options all over the state for engaging…

St. Petersburg Classic Regatta and St. Pete to Habana

There are moments when you just want to relax on the water, with the wind in your sails. Or listen to the gentle lapping of waves against your boat. Or even simply get from here to there. And then there are the times when you feel the need for speed. When winning is the only…