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2 weeks trip in South Florida

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Mar 21st, 2014, 06:56 AM
  #1
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Join Date: Mar 2014
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2 weeks trip in South Florida

Hi There,

I am planning a 2 weeks trip in south Florida mid October for my husband and I , we are 40 years old quite sporty people and we will be travelling from France.
We will be renting a car in order to cover as much ground as possible but still in a leisurely manner.
We would like to mix relaxing time at the beaches, sightseeing and activities at national parks, and spend a bit of time in Miami.
We are not interested by attractions parks etc ..
I don't know if a trip to the Bahamas is a must do ?
We will be flying in/out of Miami unless it makes sense to do maybe Miami / Tampa ?
Any ideas on itineraries would be much appreciated
Rowingf35 is offline  
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Mar 21st, 2014, 10:08 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
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We love visiting Florida in October. The weather is usually wonderful. Just so you know though, Sept. And Oct. are peak hurricane months. You may want to get some trip insurance since you are coming so far.

Hurricane season is June- Nov.
LindainOhio is offline  
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Mar 21st, 2014, 02:17 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
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5 days in Miami/Miami Beach
5 days in Keys
3 days in Naples/Bonita Springs

Between the Keys and Naples, take US 41, and you will drive through the Everglades and Big Cypress Swamp. Birds, alligators, armadillos, etc.
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Mar 21st, 2014, 06:55 PM
  #4
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
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Deerfield Beach is a great place to visit. It's just outside Ft. lauderdale.
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Mar 22nd, 2014, 04:19 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
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If you like beaches then I would spend some time on Sanibel/Captiva rather than IN Naples itself. Definitely do the Everglades as suggested.

Be aware that there aren't that many beaches people go to just lie out on in the Keys (as opposed to the east and west coast locations).
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Mar 22nd, 2014, 05:33 AM
  #6
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
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October 17 - 26 is Fantasy Fest in Key West, so unless you're prepared for some serious partying, hiked prices for food and accommodations, you probably shouldn't try to visit during that time.
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Mar 24th, 2014, 06:22 AM
  #7
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In terms of schedule, I was thinking at something like below :

Day 1 Flight Paris Miami - landing 5.30 PM - night in Miami
Day 2 Full day Miami
Day 3 Full day Miami

Day 4 Drive to Everglades
-> Night Everglades ? - Where to stay in the Everglades ?

Day 5 Everglades - Drive in the evening to Key Largo - Night in Key Largo

Day 6 Drive from Key Largo to Key Colony beach .
Night in key colony beach.

Day 7 Drive to Key West with few stops along the way night in Key West.
Day 8 Full day Key West & surroundings - night Key West
Day 9 Full day Key West & surroundings - night Key West

Day 10 Leisurely drive from Key West to Naples throughout the day
Is there a kind of scenic route ?

I was thinking using Naples as a base for accommodation and take day trips from there, in order to avoid checking in&out constantly.

Day 11 Full Day visiting the coast - night Naples
Day 12 Full Day visiting the coast - night Naples

Day 13 Drive from Naples to ??? straight to Miami ? or is there a scenic route from Fort Lauderdale to Miami ?

Day 14 Day in Miami
Day 15 Day in Miami until Flight Miami - Paris 8.40pm

Also I like horse riding, any ideas on where I could take a horse tour ?
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Mar 24th, 2014, 10:17 AM
  #8
 
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I would flip your schedule a bit and head for Key West first to avoid the later Fantasy Fest problems... and finish with a few days in South Beach Miami...

Night 1 arrive and drive to Key Largo..spend next day driving down to Key West while exploring along the way...

Three nights in Key West...

Drive back up to Everglades for overnight and tours...

Head to Naples across Alligator Alley 3 nights in Naples...

Head to Sanibel/Captiva three nights

Drive back across State to Miami South Beach for remaining nights (you can still explore down the keys and everglades from Miami)

Fly back from Miami

All of the drives are under 6 hours with some only 2 hours

have fun!
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Mar 25th, 2014, 03:02 AM
  #9
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Thank you Gary.

Am I right to understand that there is no much point of staying overnight(s) at mid point in the keys ( Key colony Beach for example) ? Is it best to head straight down to Key west and stay there a couple of days ?

As for the everglades, I am still unsure of what to do there ?
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Mar 25th, 2014, 05:29 AM
  #10
 
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I would agree with Gary about flipping your schedule on the Key West thing. Although to answer your most recent question, I'd be hesitant to arrive from an international flight and then drive all the way to Key West! Key Largo would probably be a better stop, or even just spend the first night in downtown Coral Gables or Coconut Grove and then get a fresh start the first full day to drive all the way to Key West.

But one thing. By all means do NOT take Alligator Alley from Miami (or Key West) to Naples. Take US 41 (Tamiami Trail) across the Everglades and Big Cypress Swamp. You can stop and walk Kirby Storter Cypress Swamp Boardwalk; see the amazing photos of Clyde Butcher at his Big Cypress Gallery half way across (http://www.clydebutcher.com/galleries); visit the Big Cypress Oasis Visitor's Center to see more alligators than imagineable; and even do an airboat ride if you want (somewhat controversial, I know). And you can also bypass off US 41 to the Shark Valley area of The Everglades for a tram ride. There is NO reason to take Alligator Alley across unless you want to avoid scenery. But if later you are returning, then yes, you could take it as the "short cut" between Naples/Ft. Myers and Ft. Lauderdale.
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Mar 25th, 2014, 05:31 AM
  #11
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
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Oh yes, I left out another stop on the Tamiami Trail -- a photo op at the smallest post office in the US.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ochopee_Post_Office
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May 21st, 2014, 12:50 PM
  #12
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
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Include these in your itinerary.

It's near Naples. Cypress Swamp instead of everglades swamp, very nice.
http://corkscrew.audubon.org/

One day on Sanibel Island, here's some natural attractions

http://www.pinterest.com/Beachvilla2...a-attractions/
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May 21st, 2014, 12:59 PM
  #13
 
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In the Everglades/Keys, take a tram ride (or bicycle) through Shark Valley and visit John Pennekamp State Park for a boat ride to see the coral reefs.
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