Florida. The word brings to mind swimsuits, powder-soft sand, palm-studded avenues, Mickey Mouse and amusement parks. It has all that and more. This sandy peninsula is fringed with 1260 miles of sparkling shoreline. It boasts an average of 128 sunny days a year. It has numerous premiere theme parks and water parks - Sea World, Magic Kingdom, Universal Studios, Epcot, and Blizzard Beach are but just a few. It’s home to the Everglades, one of the last unexplored wilderness areas in the United States. It counts 11 National Parks, 18 National Natural Landmarks, and 42 National Historic Landmarks. It has marshes, swamps, pine flatwoods, hammocks, prairies and rocklands. Visit Miami, a multicultural megalopolis, or remote small towns, such as Apalachicola. Tour 17th-century St. Augustine. Learn about space travel at Cape Canaveral. Delve into a history of pirates and shipwrecks. Eat fresh seafood. Bike, golf, kayak, snorkel, dive and swim. Stay at a deluxe resort or mom and pop motel.
There are a number of factors to take into account when considering what time of year to visit Florida. The main tourist season in subtropical South Florida is mid-December to mid-April. Tourists flock to temperate North Florida from May to September. Walt Disney World and the other Orlando-area attractions are best avoided during school holidays – President’s Day Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s - and throughout the peak summer season - early May to early September. Not only does the high season mean crowded places, room rates can more than double. It is hot and humid throughout the state from May to September. The hurricane season runs from June to November. The rainy season is June through September. March is one of the wettest months in the Florida Panhandle. Although snow is rare, winters in northern Florida can be cold and cold snaps lasting several days can extend as far south a the Keys. For many, it’s too cold to swim on both coasts from December through February no matter how far south you head. April and May might be a shoulder season but the weather is pleasant, there are fewer tourists, and room rates are lower.