Recently while I was at Florida Huddle 2015 in lovely Fort Lauderdale Florida, I got the chance to visit some of most fabulous and fun attractions. The ‘Sunshine State’ not only has great weather, (especially in comparison to polar vortex conditions), it also has historical attractions, an abundance of nature and fantastic coastal waterways.
Bartlett & Birch Families’ Winter Retreat
Designed and built by Frederic Clay Bartlett, Bonnet House is one of the few complete homes and studios of artists open to the public. Throughout the house you will see murals on the ceilings, faux marble on the walls, and floors and balustrades that are really paintings. Fish sculptures rise into the air, while shells have their own museum. The Bartletts’ eclectic collections are also on display, including everything from antique china to turn of the century carousel animals. This tour will truly delight all the senses. The gardens are nestled among miles of beachfront and 35 acres of barrier island ecosystem that make up the Bonnet House estate. You can walk where the ancient Tequesta Indians, early European settlers and shipwrecked sailors once roamed. See one of the finest orchid collections in the continental US and catch a glimpse of the playful tree monkeys, majestic swans and an occasional manatee.
Discover the Everglades!
Feel the excitement and learn the history of Florida’s most remarkable treasure: the Everglades. Renew your spirit as you slide across miles of river at speeds up to 50 miles per hour. Get up close and personal with native wildlife, many of which are endangered in this fragile environment. Start your adventure with a half-hour Airboat tour in the Florida Everglades. Then take a walk back in time with an original dinosaur, the Florida Alligator. The Reptile Exhibit at the Sawgrass Recreation Park features many species both native and exotic to Florida including the famous Cannibal, the 1000-pound alligator! You can also visit the exotic wildlife exhibit showcasing several amazing mammals such as the Florida panther. Interact and feed many of the animals at the Swamp Yard Exhibit that features pot-bellied pigs, bunnies, peacocks and more. The Everglades are a must-visit while in Florida.
Catch a water taxi in style
The Water Taxi service allows you unlimited boarding all day from any of their 18 locations along the Intercoastal Waterway, otherwise known as the Venice of America. The Water Taxi is more than just a boat rides. Along the way you can see some celebrity mansions and yachts, and experience the friendly crew who are sure to make your trip memorable. Water Taxis are also available for private charters, parties and group trips, as well as transportation around town to the many restaurants, bars, shopping and entertainment options.
Here are some short video clips from the trip:
Florida Huddle – Big Alligator
Florida Huddle – Luxury Boat