family vacation spots in florida

Best 15 Vacation Spots In Florida For Families (updated)

A family vacation to Florida is a fantastic idea for many families. The state is home to world-famous theme parks, miles of beaches, and an array of other attractions. The sun shines year-round, there are plenty of attractions to keep kids entertained, and it’s possible to find affordable accommodations in most areas.

The following are 15 of the best vacation spots in Florida for families. Keep in mind that this list is just a starting point, and many other great locations throughout the state would make perfect family getaways.

1. Walt Disney World Resort – Orlando

Walt Disney World Resort

No list of family-friendly destinations in Florida would be complete without mentioning Walt Disney World Resort. This massive theme park complex offers something for everyone, from toddlers to adults.

There are four major theme parks (Disney’s Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom), two water parks, over 20 themed resorts, and an endless array of dining and shopping options.

Admission tickets start at $109 per day for adults and $103 per day for children ages 3-9.

2. Universal Orlando Resort – Orlando

Universal Orlando Resort

Universal Orlando Resort is another popular destination for families in Florida. The resort consists of two theme parks (Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure), a water park (Volcano Bay), and four on-site resorts.

Universal Orlando Resort is well known for its unique effects-laden rides and attractions. In addition, the two theme parks are based on popular movie and television franchises, such as Harry Potter, Jurassic Park, and Despicable Me.

Both parks are top-rated and tend to be crowded, so it’s best to purchase tickets in advance. Admission tickets start at $115 per day for adults and $110 per day for children ages 3-9.

3. Legoland Florida – Winter Haven

Legoland Florida is a theme park tailored towards kids aged 2-12. The resort features more than 60 rides, shows, and attractions spread across 250 acres of Lego-themed wonderland.

Arrive early in the day to snag a free 2×2 Lego brick at check-in or visit during evening hours when admission rates fall by 50%.

Adult tickets start at $81, and children’s tickets can be purchased for as little as $74 (kids under three years old get in free). Annual passes are also available for frequent visitors.

4. Busch Gardens Tampa Bay – Tampa

Busch Gardens Tampa Bay is a theme park with something for everyone, from roller coasters and thrill rides to shows and safari tours.

The park is home to some of the world’s most popular roller coasters, such as the Sheikra and Falcon’s Fury.

Tickets start at $99 for adults and $94 for children aged 3-9.

5. Aquatica Orlando – Orlando

Aquatica Orlando is a water park owned by SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment. The park is home to over 30 water slides, rides, and attractions, including the tallest free-fall speed slide in North America (Taumata Racer).

Tickets to the park cost $72 for adults and $64 for children ages 3-9.

6. Legoland Florida – Winter Haven

Legoland Florida is a theme park tailored towards kids aged 2-12. The resort features more than 60 rides, shows, and attractions spread across 250 acres of Lego-themed wonderland.

Arrive early in the day to snag a free 2×2 Lego brick at check-in or visit during evening hours when admission rates fall by 50%.

Adult tickets start at $81, and children’s tickets can be purchased for as little as $74 (kids under three years old get in free). Annual passes are also available for frequent visitors.

7. Disney’s Vero Beach Resort – Vero Beach

Disney’s Vero Beach Resort provides a family-friendly setting near the Atlantic Ocean and is one of three Disney Vacation Club resorts in Florida.

The resort features several on-site amenities, such as restaurants and lounges, pools and spas, and activities for children.

Adult rates start at $120 per night, with kids sharing their parent’s room for just $20 each. Annual passes are also available. In addition, groundbreaking ceremonies for an upcoming fourth resort on Walt Disney World property will occur on January 18th.

8. Silver Springs State Park – Ocala

Silver Springs State Park is a Florida state park located on the Silver River. The park is home to glass-bottom boat tours, kayaking, hiking, and nature trails.

Admission is $6 per vehicle for up to 8 people.

9. Gatorland – Orlando

Gatorland is a 110-acre theme park and wildlife preserve located in Orlando. The park is home to thousands of alligators and crocodiles, and a variety of other animals, such as snakes, tigers, and lions.

Tickets start at $27 for adults and $21 for children ages 3-12. Annual passes are also available.

10. Big Cat Rescue – Tampa

Big Cat Rescue is a non-profit animal sanctuary dedicated to rescuing and housing exotic felines from throughout the United States and educating visitors about wildcat conservation and welfare issues.

Adults can pay a visit for $29 per person while children under 12 years old get in for free.

11. John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park – Key Largo

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park is a Florida state park located on the Florida Keys. The park offers boating, scuba diving tours, snorkeling, swimming with dolphins, and more.

Admission to the park costs $8 per vehicle or $4 for pedestrians or bicyclists. Annual passes are also available.  

12. Bok Tower Gardens – Lake Wales

Bok Tower Gardens is a historic botanical garden and bird sanctuary that consists of a 250-acre arboretum and a 205-foot tall observation tower overlooking it all.

Bok Tower Gardens is home to various plant life, including azaleas, camellias, oaks, and magnolias. The gardens are also home to different bird species, including warblers, vireos, and thrushes.

A self-guided tour through the botanical gardens costs just $15 for adults, while children under six years old are free. Admission to the tower costs $3 more.

13. Daytona International Speedway – Daytona Beach

Daytona International Speedway is a world-famous race track located in Daytona Beach. The track hosts events throughout the year, such as the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series and the Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Tickets for general admission start at $45 per person. Race tickets vary in price depending on the event.

14. Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex – Titusville

Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex is an interactive museum and space center located in Titusville. The visitor complex offers exhibits and attractions on the history of space travel and tours of the Kennedy Space Center.

Tickets start at $50 per adult and $40 per child ages 3-11. Annual passes are also available.

15. Silver River State Park – Ocala

Silver River State Park is a Florida state park located within the headwaters of the Silver River in Marion County. The park offers camping trails through native Florida swamps and hardwood hammocks, picnicking, canoeing and kayaking, and more.

Admission to the park costs $6 per vehicle for up to 8 people, while pedestrians or bicyclists get in for just $2 each. Annual passes are also available for $27 per person with a lower rate of $15 offered to seniors age 62 or above and disabled guests and their caretakers.

Conclusion

Florida has no shortage of fun and affordable places for a family vacation.

The above list includes just some of the hundreds of great attractions in the Sunshine State. Your kids will love you for bringing them here, and your wallet will be grateful when it’s time to go home!

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