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Gulf Coast Classic II

13 days / 12 nights

Walt Disney World
Walt Disney World
Walt Disney World
Eola Park And Downtown Orlando Skyline
Everglades National Park
Homosassa Springs State Park
key west lighthouse and keepers quarters museum
Kennedy Space Center
Miami Beach
Wekiwa Springs State Park
Gulf Coast Classic II map
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Day 1: Miami Beach - Howard Johnson Dezerland
Day 2: Miami Beach - Howard Johnson Dezerland
Day 3: Key West - Days Inn Key West
Day 4: Naples - Gulf Coast Inn
Day 5: St Petersburg Beach - Beachcomber Beach Resort & Hotel
Day 6: Homosassa - Bella Oasis Inn & Spa
Day 7: St Augustine - Quality Inn Historic
Day 8: Orlando - Masters Inn Maingate
Day 9: Orlando - Masters Inn Maingate
Day 10: Orlando - Masters Inn Maingate
Day 11: Cocoa Beach - Holiday Inn Cocoa Beach Resort
Day 12: Miami Beach - Howard Johnson Dezerland
Day 13: Departure - No Overnight

Day 1: Miami Beach - Holiday Inn Miami Beach
Day 2: Miami Beach - Holiday Inn Miami Beach
Day 3: Key West - Doubletree Grand Key Resort
Day 4: Naples - Inn On Fifth
Day 5: Sarasota - Holiday Inn Lido Beach
Day 6: Homosassa - Bella Oasis Inn & Spa
Day 7: St Augustine - Holiday Inn
Day 8: Orlando - Wyndham Orlando Resort OR Hilton Garden Inn at Seaworld
Day 9: Orlando - Wyndham Orlando Resort OR Hilton Garden Inn at Seaworld
Day 10: Orlando - Wyndham Orlando Resort OR Hilton Garden Inn at Seaworld
Day 11: Cocoa Beach - Hilton Cocoa Beach
Day 12: Miami Beach - Holiday Inn Miami Beach
Day 13: Departure - No Overnight
Start your day by exploring the Art Deco Historic District, the largest display of Art Deco architecture in the world. It consists of hotels and apartment buildings from the late 1920s to the early 1940s. Take a stroll along the Ocean Drive – north-south boulevard that borders the Atlantic Ocean. Visit the Lummus Park, which runs along the Ocean Beach. The park offers a great view of Ocean Drive and its line-up of Art Deco Hotels. Other places of interest, worth seeing are: Washington Avenue, Lincoln Road Mall, Collins Avenue and Collins Park, Bass Museum of Art.
Back on the mainland, Miami offers a vast array of sights and attractions. Downtown Miami emanates the lively atmosphere of a Latin city. Visit the Historical Museum of Southern Florida, which recounts the region’s colorful past. Grab a bite at Bayside Marketplace, which overlooks the Biscayne Bay. Walk the streets of Little Havana, one the city’s most vibrant and exotic neighborhoods. Check out the Latin Quarter, with its charming street lamps and brick sidewalks. South of Little Havana is the area called Coral Gables, which boasts the University of Miami campus, Venetian Pool and Lowe Art Museum. For Italian Renaissance style architecture visit the Vizcaya villa in Coconut Grove. As an alternative to Miami city visit the Everglades National Park or the Biscayne National Park.
MIAMI BEACH » KEY WEST (170 mi / 272 km)
Depart Miami Beach towards Key West. Take the US 1 Overseas Highway. It links the 120 mile long Florida Keys island chain to mainland Florida. Arrive in Key West, the Southernmost City in the continental United States. Key West cultivates an atmosphere of inspiring tolerance that encourages a diverse mix of residents, from old-time “conch’ families (descended from the island’s original settlers) to a more recently arrived gay community. Take a biking or a walking tour of Old Town Key West. Old Town boasts more than 3000 significant historic structures including museums and other attractions. Visit Harry S Truman Little White House Museum, it gives a rare glimpse of the personality and private life of America’s 33rd president. Mel Fisher Maritime Heritage Society showcases gold, silver, and treasure recovered from shipwrecks around the world. The Duval Street bar and restaurant district includes many different entertainment options, all within walking distance.
KEY WEST » NAPLES (270 mi / 432 km)
Start the morning by visiting Nobel Prize-winning author Ernest Hemingway's former home which is now open to the public as a museum, populated by as many as sixty descendants of his famous polydactyl cats. The Key West Botanical Forest and Garden is an excellent, frost-free arboretum and botanical garden containing a number of "champion tree" specimens. Nancy Forrester's Secret Garden is a one acre (4,000 m²) garden resembling a lush, predominantly green, rainforest. It is an exhibit of wild nature’s artistry in a woodland garden. The Key West Lighthouse and Keeper's Quarters Museum preserves the history of the Key West Lighthouse built in 1847. The Key West Butterfly & Nature Conservatory features a 5,000 square foot (460 m²) glass-domed tropical butterfly habitat. Some tourists mix with the locals, shop, and dine at the Key West Historic Seaport at the Key West Bight.
NAPLES » SARASOTA (105 mi / 168 km)
Naples, an upscale town reminiscent of Palm Beach, is the last urban settlement before the Everglades and the Big Cypress Swamp. Due to its great concentration of golf courses - about 40 of them - Naples is the self-proclaimed "Golf Capital of the World". The downtown Naples district is perfect for lingering around, with its shaded courtyards offering tea- and coffee sipping possibilities, and art galleries lining 3rd St South. The area is especially a shopper’s haven with numerous individually owned shops instead of chain-stores, offering merchandise of a refreshingly individual and outspoken character. For specimens of the upscale regular retail outlet variety, head for 3rd St South. After sunset, get a bite and enjoy the festive atmosphere courtesy of the keyboard soloists, tape-backed crooners, Elvis impersonators and other archaic street side delights.
Lying on the Gulf Coast just south of Bradenton, Sarasota offers one of Florida’s best balanced menus of attractions. Here one will find the official art museum of Florida, a host of cultural and sports activities, two shopping districts that rival the swankest in Palm Beach, restaurants catering to all palates and budgets, and a 35 mile ( 56 km) stretch of superb beach.
Visit the Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park. The park is one of the best places in Florida to view manatees. Visitors can get close to the animals on a floating observatory. Black bears, bobcats, white-tailed deer, American alligators, and river otter can also been seen in the park. Injured manatees are treated at the park before being released in to the wild. Arrive in Saint Augustine, the oldest continuously occupied European settlement in the US (from 1565). Start your visit at the city’s Visitor Information Center. It offers discount tickets for many area attractions. In close proximity to the Visitor Center are the Old City Gate and Castillo De San Marcos National Monument. The latter is the oldest masonry fort in the US. The fort’s gun deck offers great panoramic views. St George Street provides the best introduction to St. Augustine’s past and present. Along the street is Cathedral Basillica, the oldest Catholic parish in the US. St George Street is also home to numerous gift shops and restaurants.
Depart St Augustine early in the morning and head towards Orlando. On your way to Orlando, you might want to stop in Daytona Beach. It is famous as the “World Center of Racing” and home of NASCAR. Daytona’s biggest attraction is the 23 – mile / 37 km stretch of white sandy beach. Check out the Boardwalk and Main Street Pier. Put yourself in racer’s shoes at Daytona USA. Arrive in Orlando and proceed to your hotel. Spend the day at leisure or explore Orlando Downtown Historic District with its diverse mix of architecture, combining past and present. Stop by the Church Street Station, the area’s entertainment and shopping complex. Take a stroll in Lake Eola Park. Numerous spots around the park provide nice views of the city’s skyline and the lake’s fountain, which is illuminated at night.
If art is your thing, make sure to visit the Orlando Museum of Art. More than 600 works include 19th and 20th century American art. Orlando Science Center is a good place of interest for both children and adults. Visit Walt Disney World Resort, a city within a city, which is twice the size of Manhattan Island. Four extensive theme parks – Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Disney MGM Studio – will keep you occupied for the rest of your day. As an alternative to theme parks, visit Wekiwa Springs State Park (20 min north of Orlando). It has a vast network of 13.5 miles of trails allowing for hiking, bicycling and horseback riding.
If Walt Disney World Resort was not enough, check out Universal Orlando Resort, the second largest resort in Orlando after Disney. Get in touch with nature at Seaworld Orlando, the 200 acre marine adventure park. It combines entertainment and education in its numerous animal shows, touch pools and aquariums. Continue your bond with Mother Nature at Discovery Cove. Its main attraction is the 45 minute lecture and guided interaction with a bottlenose dolphin at Dolphin Lagoon.
Depart Orlando early in the morning and head towards the “Space Coast”. It is home to Kennedy Space Center, NASA’s launch headquarters. Here you can tour the launch areas, see giant rockets, train in spaceflight simulators or even experience a launch. After the Space Center drive to Cocoa Beach an internationally famous stretch of Atlantic beach. Cocoa Beach Pier is THE place for bars, restaurants, gift shops, fishing and live music.
COCOA BEACH » MIAMI BEACH (210 mi / 336 km)
Once back on the road, going towards Miami Beach, do not forget to make a pit stop in Palm Beach, famous for its lavish multimillion – dollar mansions.