As a Floridian, I may be a bit biased, however the Sunshine State cannot be beat. A typical Florida itinerary contains the seaside, theme park, or each — each nice choices — however the state can also be stuffed with picture-perfect islands, from small non-public oases to well-known sizzling spots. Some have must-visit seashores, whereas others have can’t-miss sights. Scan the listing under to seek out a number of the finest islands in Florida.
Whereas most individuals know Key West as a favourite cruise ship cease or the longest drive inside the Florida Keys archipelago (it’s the southernmost level of the continental United States, in any case), it’s truly an island metropolis linked to the mainland through the Abroad Freeway. On this funky, eclectic, anything-goes island, you will get out on the water, snap images of six-toed cats and free-roaming roosters, comply with within the footsteps of well-known artists and writers, and do no matter it takes to let your hair down.
If world-class arts, tradition, and buying you may take pleasure in with toes nonetheless sandy from the seaside sounds proper up your alley, Palm Seashore is for you. This laid-back seaside city additionally occurs to be one of many wealthiest zip codes in America, and whereas it typically will get lumped in discussions of the broader umbrella of Palm Seashore County, Palm Seashore correct is an eight-square-mile barrier island with loads to find beneath its polished floor.
13 miles of seashores plus luxurious resorts and golf programs sprinkled throughout untouched acreage make Amelia Island a must-visit Florida island vacation spot. With a location in northeast Florida — and because the southernmost island within the Sea Islands chain — Amelia Island feels extra Southern than tropical, and it has the allure to show it.
Little Palm Island
You may’t make a listing of the perfect islands in Florida with out together with Little Palm Island, the one non-public island resort within the U.S. It’s the epitome of island luxurious, with a spa, restaurant, and 15 thatched-roof bungalows — all with over-the-top facilities like a copper soaking tub that includes ocean views — unfold throughout its 4 tranquil acres. For the reason that solely methods to succeed in the island are through non-public boat, seaplane, or automotive (with a 10-minute motor yacht switch from Little Torch Key), the journey is a part of the enjoyable. A keep right here will set you again a fairly penny, however you may’t put a price ticket on this stage of pampering, are you able to?
Anna Maria Island
In search of a family-friendly getaway that is certain to contain Previous Florida allure, the good outdoor, stunning seashores, and dolphins? Look no additional than Anna Maria Island, the place you may eat, paddle, or spend the day displaying your self round by bike (the island is just seven miles lengthy and 1.5 miles extensive). It’s not solely a treasured island, but additionally among the finest seaside cities in Florida.
Sanibel and Captiva Islands
Whereas the sibling islands of Sanibel and Captiva stay in restoration from the destruction of Hurricane Ian, these once-popular trip locations want the assist of holiday makers greater than ever as they rebuild. The seashores will bounce again, wildlife will return, and eating places, bars, and motels will reopen — and the hospitality trade will keep in mind who confirmed up after they had been struck down.
Every week, the Sanibel & Captiva Islands Chamber of Commerce updates their listing of institutions which are again open for enterprise (there are a lot of eating places, shops, and locations to remain already), so these with a ardour for shelling and a coronary heart stuffed with grace are welcome to go to.
Tiny Peanut Island is an area’s hideaway within the Palm Seashore County. Positioned the place the Lake Price Lagoon meets the Palm Seashore Inlet, the waters listed here are crystal-clear and stuffed with tropical fish and marine life. Whereas the one method to keep in a single day is to camp (there are not any motels, eating places, or different institutions on the island), guests can spend the day snorkeling and picnicking. In case you don’t have a non-public boat, you may entry Peanut Island through the often operating shuttle.
Not plenty of islands have a complicated Ritz-Carlton resort, two massive parks (one among them a state park), a Nineteenth-century lighthouse, and a causeway connecting them to the guts of a vibrant and various international metropolis, however Key Biscayne — which clocks in slightly below two sq. miles — suits the invoice. Positioned simply off the coast of Miami’s taking place downtown, this peaceable island will make you are feeling such as you’ve teleported straight to the tropics, with plenty of wide-open house, swaying palm bushes, and blue waters, but the Magic Metropolis’s skyline isn’t removed from view.
St. George Island
For one thing a bit completely different from the same old Florida routine, head to St. George Island, an uncrowded, 28-mile retreat within the Gulf of Mexico simply off the northern Florida Panhandle. Don’t count on a buzzy sizzling spot — the quiet vibe is protected by low-density zoning legal guidelines and strict constructing top restrictions. There are not any high-rises or gimmicky chains right here, and the residents wish to preserve it that means. Plan to remain in one of many island’s two inns or guide a seaside cottage for a tranquil journey on Florida’s Forgotten Coast.
This southwest Florida barrier island is a favourite amongst guests because of the blue-green Gulf waters lapping the sands of its stunning seashores. One phase, Little Gasparilla Island, has no bridges; you may solely get there by non-public boat or water taxi, and when you arrive, the principle mode of transportation is golf cart. Or, keep on with Gasparilla Island’s largest city, Boca Grande, and guide a keep on the Gasparilla Inn & Membership for Previous Florida at its most interesting.