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Places I've Been... Locations grouped by State

Florida is the only state on this page.

Florida

Theme Parks Gulf Beaches Southern Florida

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Me and a Hooker on Hollywood Boulevard...
Florida. The land of Theme Parks, beaches, swamps, spring breaks and weather like no other of the lower 48 states, mainly because it's surrounded by water on three sides.

Arguably, the biggest draw to Florida is the weather. Hot, almost intolerable in the summer, but temperate in the winter, it's the reason it draws the tourists. In second place are the theme parks, the half-dozen main brands and the dozens of smaller attractions in the middle of Florida that stretches in a line from Tampa to Cape Canaveral.

Misc Florida Pics:
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Florida - Theme Parks

Walt Disney World
Walt Disney World Link Walt Disney World is a destination unto itself. Four Theme Parks, two nightclub areas, five golf courses, two miniature golf courses, two water parks and more resort hotel rooms than you can shake a stick at. It's the undisputed king of vacation resorts, and with good reason. They can provide an experience unmatched anywhere else in the world.

This link will take you to the Theme Park pages.

Kissimmee, Florida / ~7,000 Images. Visited Various.

Walt Disney World Resorts
WDW Resorts Link Walt Disney World runs 26 full service hotels, with around 27,500 rooms, from "value" (somewhat low-end) hotels to very opulent high-end rooms and suites, and even to Disney's own version of a timeshare, they can accommodate almost any level of service desired.

The Walt Disney World Resorts have their own page, with images for around 17 of those hotels.

Walt Disney World, Florida / More than 2000 Images. Visited Various.

Universal Orlando
Universal Orlando Link Universal Orlando is Disneyworld's biggest competition in Central Florida. Islands of Adventure, one of the two Theme Parks here, is an equal to any Disney park in America in terms of themeing, attractions, food and ambiance. Anyway, with two Theme Parks, three on-site hotels (run by Loews Hotels) and a nightclub venue, it's more like Disneyworld than anything else East of the San Andreas Fault.

This link will take you to the Theme Park pages.

Orlando, Florida / Over 500 Images. Visited Various.

Universal Orlando Resorts
Universal Orlando Hotels Link The hotels at Universal Orlando are all run by Loews, who owns hotels on the high-end of the luxury spectrum in any city they have a presence in. Universal Orlando, like Disneyland, only has three hotels on property. The lower-end, "partner" hotels are offsite.

This link will take you to the Universal Orlando Resorts page in Theme Parks.

Near Orlando, Florida / 51 Images. Visited Various.

Kennedy Space Center
Kennedy Space Center Link Kennedy Space Center is the real deal. It's history, it's facts, and it's deals more with reality than any other theme park in Florida. But in the end, reality never could compete with Fantasy and Thrill Rides.

This link will take you to the Theme Park pages.

Cape Canaveral, Florida / 43 Images. Visited June 2001, Oct 2007.

SeaWorld Orlando
SeaWorld Orlando Link SeaWorld Orlando (to me) is a day trip, and if you've never there, I'd recommend the visit. They too, like Universal, has to compete with Disneyworld, so there's a lot of Disneyesque type venues, but underneath it all, it's a bunch of creatures that have a lot of learned behaviors. Just like us.

This link will take you to the Theme Park pages.

Orlando, Florida / 46 Images. Visited Dec 2006.

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Florida - Gulf Coast

Realistically, however, the biggest draws to Florida are the beaches and water-front accessibility, since it has hundreds of miles of coastline from the mainland to the islands of the Florida Keys. Maybe even more to the point, it also has the weather to make beaches and warm weather activities a year-long proposition.

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Pensacola and the Gulf Islands National Seashore
Panhandle Link This is labeled as Pensacola and the Gulf Islands NS, but in reality it's neither. It is of the Western Florida Panhandle, though.

I went there to visit the Gulf Islands NS, but it was closed. I also wanted to drive a road that followed the barrier islands, but it was closed. I also visited the US Armament museum, but it was closed. This is what you get for getting up early enough for the sunrise...

Western Florida / 22 Images. Visited Mar 2000.

Siesta Key, Florida
Siesta Key Link I was only in Siesta Key for a few hours, when we took a trip up from Venice to see the beach.

It's a long barrier island. There is a main road up the center of it, with hotels and condos on both sides of that main road for every square foot of the island. I'll bet it's insane during the tourist season.

Siesta Key, Florida / 26 Images. Visited Dec 2009.

Venice, Florida
Venice Link Venice is a nice, quiet little tourist town that's probably a madhouse during the Summer season, but I was there in December. Stayed in a room that overlooked the Gulf. Can't beat that...

Images include Casey's Pass, Venice Pier and Caspersen Beach.

Venice, Florida / 90 Images. Visited Dec 2009.

Inn at the Beach. Venice, Florida
Inn At The Beach Link Inn at the Beach is a motel right across the street from Venice beach.

I stayed in a unique, small room (which I suppose could be a second bedroom to the suite next door if you use the connecting door), which faced the Gulf of Mexico. Too bad the weather was crap, but I can hardly blame the management for that. :)

Venice, Florida / 35 Images. Visited Dec 2009.

Marco Island, Florida
Marco Island Link We stayed on Marco Island for the night, when we went to Everglades National Park. It was just another gorgeous Gulf Beach, white sands, warm temperatures (it was mid-October), beautiful sunset...

The next day, we'd visit the East end of Everglades National Park and Key West.

Marco Island, Florida / 25 Images. Visited Oct 2003.
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Florida - Southern Florida

And then, there's the swamps. Everglades National Park is mostly swamp, as is most of the southern, central part of the state.

Everglades National Park
Everglades Link Here's a quote about Everglades National Park in The Complete Guide to America's National Parks:

"Mosquitoes and other biting insects make camping and backcountry use during the summer rainy season virtually unbearable by all but the most dedicated outdoors person."

'Nuff said.

Southern Florida / 32 Images. Visited Oct 2003.

Key West, Florida
Key West Link I was only in Key West for a night. Entertaining performance artists and great Cuban food told me I should have spent more time there.

One of these days I should go back...

Key West, Florida / 20 Images. Visited Oct 2003.

Marina Bay Resort
Marina Bay Resort Link Marina Bay Resort no longer exists as it does in the photos from *30* years ago. I was there for a small conference once, which was more of a reward for working on a long project than an actual conference. I mean, Fort Lauderdale in January? Yeah, real tough...

I wouldn't even have these pictures here if it wasn't for a tree. (cough)

Fort Lauderdale, Florida / 13 Images. Visited Jan 1986.

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