Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA cruises

Fort Lauderdale is world famous for its magnificent beaches, watersports, retail, and its canals and marina. Relaxing on the golden sands is a popular pastime, but there’s no shortage of alternatives.

 

Your Guide to Fort Lauderdale.

Situated in Broward County, on southern Florida’s Atlantic coast, Fort Lauderdale is famous for its beautiful beaches, excellent shopping and superb dining. Known as the ‘Venice of the USA’ the city is a dynamic destination offering many scenic waterways to explore and a bustling riverfront lined with cafes, shops and eateries. Take a stroll around Fort Lauderdale’s historical districts, savour a barefoot walk on the beach or take in the city’s mansions on a chartered river cruise. When you’re back on dry land, take a moment to explore downtown or make a beeline straight to Miami, where Ocean Drive and South Beach are among the famous sights to explore.

Exploring.

Fort Lauderdale’s waterways, its downtown, and coast offer plenty for visitors to see and explore. Hugh Taylor Birch State Park has direct beach access and two short nature trails for the keen walker. Bonnet House, a 1920-built property with sub-tropical gardens offers lush vegetation and resident monkeys, close to the International Swimming Hall of Fame. An outstanding Museum of Art can be found in the heart of the city while a river cruise, from Riverwalk, reveals the city’s private palatial mansions. Downtown is Old Fort Lauderdale Village and Museum, offering three historic buildings dating from the early 20th century.

Eating and drinking.

Fort Lauderdale has innumerable cafés and restaurants, from intimate waterside bistros and steakhouses to numerous seafood options. Cuisines such as Cuban and Mexican often represent excellent value while European restaurants are usually more expensive, however many offer a fixed-price menu. A walk along Las Olas Boulevard, Fort Lauderdale Beach, the Riverwalk and downtown will reveal all manner of eateries, while food courts can be found within the city’s malls. American food is overwhelmingly represented and portion sizes can be mountainous. The city also boasts excellent seafood and fish restaurants - offering shellfish, oysters and locally caught Florida lobster.

Shopping.

Florida is famed for its shopping and Fort Lauderdale is no exception. Beach Place, just north of the International Swimming Hall of Fame, has a good mix of shops and eateries. Galleria Mall, to the south, has over 120 shops, including Saks Fifth Avenue. In downtown Fort Lauderdale, Las Olas Boulevard and the Riverfront are both worthy of a visit. Swap Shop, on W Sunrise Boulevard, is an interesting flea market with a food court complex. Florida’s second-biggest tourist attraction after Disney World, Sawgrass Mills Mall boasts more than 300 retailers, and is situated on the western outskirts of Greater Fort Lauderdale.

Beyond Fort Lauderdale.

Florida’s second largest city, Miami, can be reached from Fort Lauderdale by Tri-Rail. Must-sees include the Art Deco Historic District, with over 800 restored buildings, and a stroll along the city’s famous Ocean Drive. Elsewhere in the city Miami Seaquarium offers shows featuring dolphins, killer whales and sea lions. The 70-room Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is filled with antique treasures including furniture, and just a stone’s throw from the Museum of Science and Space Transit Planetarium. Closer to the cruise terminal, Fort Lauderdale Beach, part of Florida’s first designated Blue Wave Beach, is a three mile stretch of golden sands, a short taxi ride from Port Everglades.

 

Please be aware that the state of Florida has a 6% sales tax, which is added to the cost of many purchases and restaurant bills.