Florida Guide > Miscellaneous
Florida, the Sunshine State
In 1565 the first permanent settlement was founded in St. Augustine. Pensacola was given the nickname of 'City of Five Flags' because at one time or another it was under the rule of Spain, France, England, the Confederacy, and the United States. Eventually Florida became a US territory and State. By the late 19th century, aggressive developers began to see Florida’s potential as a tourist destination. Railroads and hotels were built to attract well to do visitors such as the Vanderbilts, Rockefellers and DuPonts.
Florida, with its 1200 miles of coastline, which attracts beachgoers, water sports enthusiasts and nature lovers, has been nicknamed the ‘Sunshine State’ due its subtropical climate and long hours of sun.
Due to its warm and pleasant climate, it attracts hordes of vacationers, retirees, immigrants and snowbirds (winter residents). It’s a great place for golf with its dozens of immaculate golf courses and is popular for tennis as well. It’s a brilliant place to visit, relax and enjoy the many theme parks and attractions it has to offer.
Florida has many beaches along its coastlines. The Atlantic Ocean on the east coast with its wave lapping and sugar sand beaches of the Gulf of Mexico on the west coast and panhandle. The beaches are popular with everyone, including families. The Florida Keys to the south has many coral reefs popular for snorkelling and diving.
Miami, Florida’s largest and most cosmopolitan city, hugs the state on the south-eastern coast. It is well known for its international trade and flavour as well as glitz and celebrity. Just a stone’s throw from Miami is the Everglades, a national park home to unusual wildlife, including alligators. Florida is well known for its oranges, grapefruits, grows sugarcane and raises cattle.
Orlando has sprouted eight major theme parks, five water parks and countless attractions including restaurants, hotels and shops. Florida’s major attraction is its climate with long summers and mild, short winters, and Florida averages 220 days of sunshine per year.
In Florida, you can explore the reefs or water ski, sail, paddle, cruise, race, swim,run, trek or just relax. If you enjoy sports, why not watch the pro teams in Miami, Orlando, St. Pete, Tampa or Jacksonville. Football, ice hockey, roller hockey, baseball and basketball are all favourites.
If you enjoy water parks, Florida has some of the best including Wet n’ Wild, Typhoon Lagoon and Disney’s Blizzard Beach. If you’ve not visited Florida already, you’ll want to make sure you do. Kids and adults will simply love it for its great variety of things to do and see. It’s simply fantastic!
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