Are you looking for a romantic destination in the Sunshine State, but you aren’t really a beach person? While it may seem like beach trips are the only way to do Florida, there are plenty of spots and themed hotels that have nothing to do with the beach and are calling your name. How about an amusement park, or a western-themed hotel? Read more about these trip ideas below.
1. Disney World | Universal Studios | Everglades
Playing host to more than 4,000 weddings, and the site of hundreds of engagements annually, Disney World in Orlando must be a pretty romantic spot. Universal Studios, Orlando also comes in a close second in terms of destinations for thrill seekers in the area. You can choose from a themed hotel near these Florida hot spots, or save a bit of money by staying in any number of Okeechobee hotels located about two hours south of the park. If you plan on spending only a day or two in the park and want to explore the Everglades too during your trip, you can reach this gigantic swamp about two hours south of Okeechobee, this area is the perfect waypoint in between.
2. OK Corral
Looking for a romantic stay a little rough around the edges, away from the amusement park crowds and nowhere near the beach? Consider a stay at western hotel, OK Corral Gun Club right in Okeechobee. This property draws inspiration from the Wild West, features an outdoor shooting range, shooting lessons, sport shooting opportunities, an old fashioned general store, and your choice between a private cabin all to yourselves, or a room in the property’s boarding house.
During your stay, be sure to dine in the High Noon cafe for a hearty meal. Check out availability and book a room here for your next Wild West adventure.
3. Mount Dora
Another Florida destination that has nothing to do with the beach, is Mount Dora, a historic small town an hour north of Orlando in the central part of the state and with about 14,000 residents. It’s nicknamed “Festival City” for its litany of events held year round. You’ll find plenty of hotels, restaurants, shops and antique spots in the area. Visit the Modernism Museum, or the Mount Dora Museum of Speed while you’re in town.
For a bigger city vibe, head to Tampa for a non-beach Florida destination. This city of 4 million residents offers plenty of fun activities and romantic rendezvous to satisfy any traveler’s interests. While in town, head over to Busch Gardens for an amusing afternoon. Take a brewery tour of the many local beer producers in the region. Vist the Tampa Aquarium or take a romantic stroll down the city’s riverwalk.
5. Key West
Although you may think Key West is the place to head to hit the beach, you might be disappointed when you get there. There is actually more coral reef around the island than sandy beach, and the sandy beaches that are on the island, are man made. Don’t fear, because Key West is a great Florida destination even for people who don’t really like the beach. Duval Street is the main artery of this island community and is bustling with shops, restaurants, entertainment, performers and people. Tour Ernest Hemingway’s house while in Key West, or visit the official marker of the southernmost spot in the U.S.