7 Top-Rated Tourist Destinations in Fort Lauderdale (2023)
Famous for its beaches and boating canals, Fort Lauderdale is the largest city of Broward County, the Miami metropolitan area’s principal city, Yachting Capital of the World, and a popular tourist destination of Florida City. Out of uncountable places to visit in Fort Lauderdale, one can add beaches, museums, art galleries, recreational parks, river walks, and a surprising amount of history and nature to their list.
With miles of vibrant nature, Fort Lauderdale has hosted over 13 million of visitors in the year 2018. It is a predominantly residential resort city with beautiful architecture like a sophisticated urban destination and chain of canals and waterways like Venice. However, for a refined and well-utilized vacation, consider our well-researched list of the must-visit tourist destinations in Fort Lauderdale.
7 Top-Rated Tourist Destinations in Fort Lauderdale
1. Fort Lauderdale Beach
Fort Lauderdale Beach is a charming site with crystal clear water, sugary sand, and palm tree-lined promenade bustles that give a real retro Hollywood feel. The tall palm trees shading the sand way provide for a relaxing and chilling day, hiding from the Sun. It is counted amongst the most loved tourist destinations in Fort Lauderdale, backed by numerous hotels, bars, restaurants, and shops, making it ideal for parties and celebrations.
Fort Lauderdale Beach holds a natural coral reef system, making it ideal for numerous water activities like snorkeling, diving, swimming, jet-skiing, saltwater fishing, and many more. The site also offers a range of beach sports opportunities including, harness horseracing, golf, roller-skating, volleyball or even a simple and relaxing coastline walk. It is well guarded with lifeguard towers and is a safe beach for fun and adventure.
2. Las Olas Boulevard
A stretch from downtown Fort Lauderdale to Las Olas Beach, the Las Olas Boulevard is a famous thoroughfare that influences Mediterranean architecture. Tourists and locals often visit Las Olas for experiencing the fun of authentic Nightlife in Fort Lauderdale. The Boulevard is packed with busy nightclubs, eclectic boutiques, international art galleries, world-class museums, buzzing restaurants serving local/global food, and bars, headed with twinkling lights setting each evening with fun, celebration and excitement.
Las Olas Boulevard experiences a number of public events like Las Olas Art Fair, which draws art, food, and fun lovers from across the country and around the World. It is the ideal place for those visitors who want to experience the vibrant and celebrative energy of Fort Lauderdale.
3. Hugh Taylor Birch State Park
An oasis of tropical hammocks, the Hugh Taylor Birch State Park, is a marvelous gift from Hugh Taylor Birch to Florida. It is an ideal place for a peaceful walk-in lap of nature or an afternoon picnic. It has access to a beautiful beach where visitors can rent Canoes or even bring along their paddleboats and then further move towards freshwater lagoon for saltwater fishing and viewing the majestic wildlife. Amongst the wilderness, one can encounter an eastern indigo snake, butterflies, squirrels, marsh rabbits, gopher tortoise, Gray squirrels, opossums, and more than 200 species of birds and ducks.
The State Park’s outskirts are also an ideal place for swimming, Segway tours, group camping, hiking, inline skating, and other engaging activities throughout the day.
However, it closes once the Sun is down and is not accessible during the night time.
4. Bonnet House Museum and Gardens
A historic home in Fort Lauderdale, the Bonnet House Museum and Gardens is a 35-acre estate that blends the art, history, and nature of Florida exceptionally well. The entire site is beautifully brought together via vernacular architecture divided into the main house, an art studio, a music studio, a guest house, a 30 m beach and 210 m of beachfront. The art studio is bright, colorful and full of whimsical displays that are worth a visit.
The Bonnet House Museum and Gardens holds 5 ecosystems, including mangrove wetlands, a maritime forest, a freshwater slough, primary and secondary dunes. The gardens here include a desert garden, Orchid Display House, and a Hibiscus garden beautifully filled will lush green trees and plantations all around. It also serves as a filming location, which primarily contributes to its revenue fund. A walk through the gardens sometimes makes visitors encounter some friendly monkeys; however, it is advisable to stay at a safer distance from them.
5. Sawgrass Recreation Park
The Sawgrass Recreation Park in Fort Lauderdale is named as Florida’s greatest airboat attraction that exhibits educational presentation and panoramic views of the Glades. The recreation park offers two adventure tours, including the night time Red Eye and the Private daytime tour. The nighttime Red Eye tour is organized only on Gator Nights (Wednesdays and Saturdays) for 1 hour, where visitors can spot alligators closely. In contrast, the Private daytime tour takes through the marshy, humid swamp waters of Water glades where one can spot black leopards, Florida panther and pythons from a very close but safer distance.
Sawgrass Recreation Park is also open for picnics, primitive camping, where visitors can also hire fishing boats and get along into the thrilling experience. The site is open 363 days a year and is only an hour far from Miami and 25 minutes away from Fort Lauderdale city center.
6. Flamingo Gardens
The hidden beauty of Florida and one of the Best Places to visit in Fort Lauderdale, Flamingo Gardens is an everglade wildlife sanctuary and a tropical botanic garden. Located to the west of the city, it is spread over 60 acres of a tropical oasis and holds more than 3,000 species of tropical and subtropical plants—250 species of birds and over 90 species of Florida native wildlife. The astonishing plantation here includes 200-year-old Southern live oaks, hundreds of palm species, exotic flora, crotons, aroids, succulents, orchids and other uncountable beauties within nature’s lap.
Flamingo Gardens is an ideal spot for nature lovers open throughout the year with some exquisite festivals at times, including Swamp Fest Bluegrass Festival and local art installations that attract a huge crowd. A visit here during spring or winter is enjoyable, and when in Fort Lauderdale, one must not miss it.
7. Antique Car Museum
For car lovers, who love pre-war Packard automobiles, the Antique Car Museum is an ideal place to visit in Fort Lauderdale. The museum boasts a one of a kind setting with the biggest collection of Packard’s and Packard memorabilia in the World that would leave no chance to impress the car enthusiasts. Each car displayed here is in full working order with its books of facts and history displayed alongside. Even some of them hold an extensive history of fame from 1900s to the 19200s.
Earlier in the days before World War II, Packard used to be America’s most prestigious car, and every big personality wants to own one. Every masterpiece here is in excellent condition boasting unique details along with numerous pieces of automobile memorabilia. The museum is open 6 days a week, i.e., Monday to Saturday and is ideal for visitors of all age groups.
These were the top 7 sight-seeing tourist destinations in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The Fort Lauderdale–Hollywood International Airport is the nearest airport in Fort Lauderdale and receives various international and domestic flights frequently on a daily basis. The airport is well connected with the city through buses, shuttles, taxis, town cars and shares a rough distance of nearly 8 to 10 km. However, from Miami, the Fort Lauderdale city is just 45 km and connects well with various transportation modes through the day and night.
Fort Lauderdale stays hot and humid for most of the year; however, December to April holds the ideal temperature to plan a vacation. The falls and spring here in the city are excellent seasons for exploring the destinations and becoming a part of various yearly festivals.