Fort Lauderdale is a destination where visitors, from near and far, come for a beach vacation. But it’s not only about the beach. There is so much to do, see and experience that it’s almost impossible to fit it all in one vacation – which is why you’ll want to come back for more. Whether you are looking for a relaxing day, an exciting adventure or a bargain, here are some great ways to spend the day while visiting the beautiful city of Fort Lauderdale.
Looking for a relaxing day? The water taxi is a hop-on, hop-off boating experience that takes you all around the city via the Intracoastal Waterway. They have open air, double-decker, and enclosed boats. Some even have bar service! Take in the views of the beautiful mansions and mega yachts that line the waterway. My first favorite stop is at Shooters Waterfront. Try their brunch buffet that is available on the weekends. There are so many choices on the menu. If the full buffet sounds too filling, try the Crab Cake Benedict – it is delish! Don’t forget the Frosé.
My next favorite stop is Las Olas Boulevard – enjoy the dining, galleries, shopping and nightlife in this fun area. Grab dinner at Louie Bossi’s. They have a great vibe, and their garden seating makes you feel like you are in a small Italian Village. An all-day ticket on the Water Taxi allows you to sight see for the day and stroll the city streets in the evening. Definitely worth the price!
Feeling lucky? Gulfstream Park hosts thoroughbred racing year round and is the host to the annual Florida Derby. Watching the horses zoom by the guardrail is exhilarating. At the Village in Gulfstream Park, there are restaurants, bars, nightclubs, shops, and activities for the whole family.
Challenge your friends or family to a bowling match at Strike 10, then browse the shops throughout the village, including Z Gallerie and West Elm. Worked up an appetite? Head to one of the many restaurants located in the Village. My favorite place to hang out is definitely Yard House. Between their beer selection and happy hour specials, this is the place to be. Bonus – from the Yard House patio, you can watch the jockeys and their horses as they trot around the paddock prior to their race.
Everglades Holiday Park
Nature lover? For a fun day outdoors full of adventure, Everglades Holiday Park is located west of Fort Lauderdale. With airboat rides and alligator shows, this place does not disappoint. The airboat ride is an hour-long tour through the Everglades, with multiple alligator sightings (ranging in size from 3ft to 12ft) and tons of birds native to the area. After the ride, head over to the animal encounter area where you will have the opportunity to hold a gator! Not to worry, the handler is never out of reach.
Sawgrass Mills Mall
Bargain hunter? With over 300 stores and restaurants and over 2 million square feet of retail space, Sawgrass Mills is my favorite shopping destination. They have every outlet you can imagine. Prada, Versace and Gucci – “Oh my!” You can find anything in this mall. And if you’re worried about everything fitting in your luggage, there are multiple luggage stores throughout the mall to accommodate your purchases for safe travels home.
This is just the beginning of ideas for how to spend your days in Fort Lauderdale. Whether you are here on vacation or for business, this is a great area to explore. Come down, and play in our sandbox without getting sand in your shorts!