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3 Perfect Florida Weekend Getaways to Take Now

Need a quick trip to bask in the sun? Here are 3 great options across Florida.

3 Perfect Florida Weekend Getaways to Take Now

Peter W Cross

Let’s face it: When you’re in a daily routine, suddenly the weeks start blending together. Well, it’s time to give “normal” a few days off. Fortunately, Florida makes for easy weekend escapes—whether for just a couple days or a long weekend. So pack lightly (it is the Sunshine State, after all), hop a flight, and discover why quick trips to Florida can mean big fun.

Choose from one of these options or find even more weekend getaway ideas at VISIT FLORIDA.


Weekend #1: Pensacola
You’ll find some of America’s most pristine beaches in Pensacola, along with plenty of opportunity for adventure. This laid-back city has more than 450 years of history to discover and explore. Check in to one of the spectacular places to stay on Pensacola Beach or Perdido Key. These barrier islands offer all manner of options, from beachfront hotels and condos to quaint vacation rental homes. Whichever you choose, you’ll never be far from pressing your toes into the soft, sugar-white sand and wading into the clear, warm Gulf water.

Pensacola is also a great place to discover adventure—whether you’re following a passion or learning a new skill. Take a fishing trip, paddle a kayak, go for a trek along coastal trails, or enjoy birding or diving—it’s all available here.

When you work up an appetite, Pensacola offers an array of dining options that serve up specialties like fresh Gulf seafood and innovative Southern cuisine. Oysters shucked to order? Check. Fresh grouper? Check. Dining with a water view? Absolutely.


Weekend #2: Vero Beach in Indian River County
Gorgeous beaches, endless ocean views, and charming locally-owned restaurants: Indian River County has a vibe all its own. Whether a family vacation, couples’ getaway, or solo trip, you’ll find great options for all. Vero Beach is different from other Florida coastal towns. On the barrier island you won’t see towering high-rise hotels, T-shirt shops, neon signs, or chain restaurants. What you can expect when your beach chair hits the sand is plenty of Florida sunshine without the crowds. Beyond the beaches, the area is rich in eco-excursions and top-tier cultural attractions, while offering a relaxed, small-town vibe that is quintessentially Vero Beach. Discover a luxurious oceanfront sanctuary at Kimpton’s Vero Beach Resort. Lounge around the pool of this boutique hotel, try out a new watersport, indulge in a massage at the spa, or simply relax in your spacious room with an endless ocean view. Or experience the Latin-inspired Costa d’Este Beach Resort and Spa owned by Gloria and Emilio Estafan. While you’re there, grab your snorkel gear; just 200 yards from shore, the SS Brechonshire shipwreck is teeming with fish, stingrays, and sea turtles.


Just down the coast is the equally gorgeous Martin County and the barrier island of Hutchinson Island. In your luxurious room at the Hutchinson Shores Resort & Spa, you’ll awaken to the sound of the waves and enjoy morning coffee from your private oceanfront balcony. Ramp up the energy on the Ohana Bus, which offers paddleboard lessons and eco tours. Or, if you’re here with friends, rent out the bus for a day or night on the town. Try The Gafford in charming downtown Stuart for fresh, local fish and meats, and delicious Southern dishes in this casually upscale restaurant.


Weekend #3: The West Coast
Florida’s West Coast is tailor made for a weekend full of adventure, with the warm Gulf waters right at your doorstep. Plan for a long weekend away, because when you book a four-night stay at the waterfront Westin Cape Coral Resort at Marina Village, near Fort Myers, you can receive your fourth night free and a $100 resort credit. Enjoy views of the Gulf of Mexico and the Caloosahatchee River from your spacious room and private screened-in balcony. Unwind at the nearby beaches, just a water taxi ride away, and make the most of all the resort activities, which include a spa, tennis courts, kayak rentals, a nature trail, three outdoor pools, bicycle rentals, and shopping.


This Westin is also home to the Offshore Sailing and Powerboating School—making for the perfect opportunity to get out on the water! If you’ve ever been interested in learning how to pilot a boat, now’s your chance with a catamaran cruising course from Offshore Sailing School. Relax aboard a gorgeous yacht as you explore the area. Plus, AFAR subscribers can get 10% off their Power Catamaran Cruising course, when booked with a stay at the Westin Cape Coral Resort at Marina Village and taken between April and October 2019. During this week-long course, you’ll live aboard the boat and travel from port to port. Just call 888-852-1865 to enroll, and mention “10% AFAR Savings” to get the discount!

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