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Top 5 Budget Florida Getaways for Labor Day Weekend

The Florida Keys at sunset

Labor Day is fast approaching, but don’t put your vacation and travel plans on the back burner thinking, “it’s too late” just yet. There are weekend getaways and day trips – you just need to know where to look. If you’re not too into crowds, it’s best to avoid popular areas like Orlando and Disneyworld if you can help it.

Here are some ideas to fit every budget and travel style:

Canoe “The Everglades” during the weekend: The 1.4 million acre Everglades National Park  is the largest subtropical wilderness park in the United States. Even if you don’t plan on going canoeing, it could be fun and relaxing to schedule a tour of parts of the park with your family. Other affordable hotel options nearby include the Fairway Inn Gateway to the Keys and Floridian Hotel of Homestead.

Enjoy a Romantic Weekend at Sanibel Island: Fun for the entire family but also a particularly romantic spot, Sanibel Island is popular for its plethora of seashells in all shapes and sizes (the beaches of Fort Myers & Sanibel have some 400 species of shells). Bring a bucket and let your kids go wild. The region is likely to be crowded during Labor Day Weekend. Check out some budget friendly lodging options like the Doubletree Suites by Hilton Naples and receive a $15 credit when you book.

Visit the Kennedy Space Center: Although the U.S. Shuttle program has been discontinued, a visit to the Kennedy Center is fun for the entire family. Tour the launch areas, meet a veteran astronaut and simply enjoy  (don’t question!) the delicious Dots Space Ice Cream.

Drive to the Florida Keys: If you have some extra driving time on your hands, why not pack the entire family and drive down to the Keys? A beautiful necklace of islands, the Keys could take several weeks to discover, but you could pick one for the weekend and thoroughly explore what it has to offer. Key West is the most popular of the keys and likely to be crowded; if you want to try an “off the beaten” path Florida Keys vacation, try Big Pine Key and the Lower Keys. One of the must-do foodie experiences in the Keys is paying a visit to Conch Houses (these offer conch cooking so visitors can enjoy traditional conch fritters and ceviche, among other local treats). If you’re feeling adventurous, check out the recently debuted Underwater Exhibit off Key West.

Enjoy Festivals and Activities near Lake Placid: August 26-28th is a busy time in the Lake Placid area, and families can enjoy water sports or take in the beautiful blooms at the 21st Annual Caladium Festival in downtown Lake Placid. During that weekend, visitors can also enjoy the wine festival and the 14th Annual Antique & Classic Car Show. Budget lodging options include the Ramada Lake Placid and Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Suite.


CC Flickr photo credit: Krug6
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