EXPLORE FORT LAUDERDALE
FORT LAUDERDALE’S 23 miles of Atlantic coast beaches and 300-plus miles of Intracoastal Waterway and navigable inland canals that connect the Everglades with the Atlantic Ocean make this great destination known as the “Venice of America”. Stretching from Deerfield Beach to the north and extending to Hallandale Beach to the south, Greater Fort Lauderdale is made up of more than two dozen cities, 8 of which have a unique stretch of beach (and personality) of their own.
Over the years, Fort Lauderdale Beach has transformed its reputation from a wild and crazy party town to a beach chic destination with an endless array of outdoor activities to keep us both active and entertained. Whether you’re passionate about splashing around in the waves, exploring the area’s natural wonders, scuba, or watersports you’ll find enough here to satisfy the appetite of outdoor enthusiasts of all ages and skill levels.
Love to shop? Fort Lauderdale takes its shopping very seriously offering a wide range of options from the mega-outlet mall Sawgrass Mills to eclectic Las Olas known as “Style Mile” lined with fantastic boutiques and restaurants to just about everything in between.
Feeling lucky? Gaming excitement surrounds Fort Lauderdale; there’s the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Isle of Capri in Pompano Beach, Mardi Gras Casino in Hallandale Beach, and the re-opening of Jai-Alai (pronounced Hi – Li) in late 2015 in Dania Beach featuring gaming excitement around the “world’s fastest sport”.
When your day at the beach, sightseeing, or shopping, comes to an end, be sure to check out the great local bars and restaurants, live entertainment, a thriving LGBT community, art galleries and museums, a long list of events (including many free options) and much, much more!
And at the end of the day whether you’re looking for a spa/resort, hotel/motel, superior small lodging, cruise hotels, campgrounds, pet friendly, beach, or an LGBT property to call home during your stay, you’ll discover why visitors from around the corner and around the world recognize Fort Lauderdale Beach as an inviting and friendly destination for all. If you’re interested in reading more about the recent happenings, here’s a link to our Fort Lauderdale Journal (blog) page.
Following are few links you made find helpful (we certainly have). If you use the links, you’ll be leaving this website and will be redirected to another. Although we’ve found the links quite useful, we’re not making endorsements or claims about the accuracy or content of the information you’ll find there. Must See Attractions (Video); Fabulous Las Olas Boulevard (Video); and the LGBT Community Scene (Video).
Did You Know…
Fort Lauderdale’s public beach is one of the most famous in the world, one of the most visited in Florida, and one whose name became synonymous with spring-break vacations as a direct result of a motion picture release. In December 1960, MGM distributed the hit movie, “Where the Boys Are” a story about a group of Midwest girls who head to seek sun and fun in Fort Lauderdale. As a result of the film, the Spring of 1961 would bring the start of a decades-long run that brought hundreds of thousands of college-aged revelers each year to Fort Lauderdale beaches spilling over and blocking SR A1A for a month of steady drinking and other assorted amusements all inspired by the ’60s movie classic. If you decide to explore this iconic destination, here’s an address you can use to bring you near the heart of the action 241 S Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd, 33316.
From FortLauderdale.gov we learned that the City of Fort Lauderdale has a rich history of continuous ocean lifesaving services dating back to 1926 and its Ocean Rescue is USLA (US Lifesaving Association) certified, nationally recognized for excellence, and supervises roughly three miles of continuous public beach from the South Beach Picnic Area up to and including the beach in front of Hugh Taylor Birch State Park. In the guarded areas of the beach, there are 20 year-round, permanently staffed lifeguard towers spaced between 200 and 400 yards apart. Drowning is very rare in lifeguard-supervised areas of Ft. Lauderdale Beach and through the site’s “Ocean Smart” Guide and “Ocean Smart” Kids Guide we found practical information about beach safety you may find useful too including floatation devices, leashing surf boards, and other useful suggestions to help keep us safe. We snapped this pic of one of Ocean Rescue’s badass 4×4 rescue vehicles and if you decide to come here and explore this beach, head toward E. Las Olas Blvd. & A1A, 33316.
Here’s a haunt from Brian Roesch’s book titled “Another Sixth Sense”. Under the New River near downtown Ft. Lauderdale where US 1 and E Las Olas Blvd. intersect, you’ll find the north entrance of the Henry E. Kinney Tunnel and it’s said to be haunted. There have been reports of a man estimated to be between 60 and 70 years old, wearing a brown suit dodging traffic, standing, or walking along the walkway in the tunnel heading southbound. Some say it’s the ghost of Henry E. Kinney (the tunnel was named after him about a year after he died) while other sources we found identify the shadowy apparitions as those of Native Americans. As the Stranahan House is near the north end of the tunnel and Smoker Park is near the south end (both are also alleged to be haunted) it’s of little wonder why a significant amount of paranormal activity has been recorded in this area. If you follow the New River northeast for about 5 miles or so (and we definitely recommend taking A1A/ N. Ocean Blvd. to do it) you’ll run right into the spectacular beachside community of Lauderdale by the Sea where this pic was shot and if you decide to make your way here too, head toward 2 Commercial Blvd., 33308.
From time.com we learned the origins of spring break can be traced back to Fort Lauderdale and a 1938 collegiate swim competition that became a growing annual event. Over the next two decades, both the number of event participants and number of supporters continued to swell. TIME magazine first highlighted Fort Lauderdale’s spring break scene in an April 1959 article titled “Beer & the Beach”. Roughly two years later came the release of an epic spring break-themed hit movie called Where the Boys Are. The film, set in Fort Lauderdale, spread the tale of collegiate men and women voyaging to the peaceful shores of Florida to find fun, sun and maybe true love. By the free-loving ’70s, Fort Lauderdale’s fun and sun had become arguably raunchier. By 1985, some 370,000 students were annually descending on Fort Lauderdale and by the end of the ’80s, the town seemingly had had enough. Stricter laws against public drinking were put in place and the Mayor went so far as to go on ABC’s Good Morning America to tell students they were no longer welcome. As a result of this “encouragement’ to find an alternative playground and with the influence of MTV, spring break revelers descended on other Florida cities as well as destinations outside the U.S. where drinking ages were/are lower. Cheers to Florida’s original spring break town and if you decide to come and snap a pic near this roadside postcard, head toward 355 Florida A1A, 33316.